Derby College Group engineering apprentice Luby Sisson has become the first female engineer to join the maintenance team at Moy Park's Ashbourne site.
Luby, who is 19 and from Swanwick, already held level 3 qualifications in electrical and mechanical principles but was having difficulty getting an apprenticeship until recently.
She said: “I’d heard that companies were keen to take on women engineers, but I found that being female appeared to go against me with some employers. They’d say things like “We like you, you’re great, but…”
“It’s not like that at Moy Park. I started my apprenticeship there on my 19th birthday.”
Moy Park training co-ordinator Dave Wilkinson said: “Luby’s job involves looking after all types of machinery used in poultry processing. She’s really enthusiastic about her work and doing well.
“I’ve been working with the business development team at Derby College for the past two and a half years and we’ve been impressed with the young people college has recommended. Recently we needed two apprentices at short notice but it wasn’t a problem. The college put forward two good candidates for interview – Luby and our other newest engineering apprentice, Ryan Pickering.”
Luby, whose choice of career was inspired by her grandad, also an engineer, will train at Moy Park for the next three years, with the opportunity to progress, possibly progressing to HNC qualifications.
She added: “When I was a child, I’d take my toys apart just so that I could put them back together again. There are photos of me when I was little with my grandad’s toolbox and all the tools spread out around me!
“Engineering offers so many different career paths and I would like to see other girls get into engineering too.”
Moy Park has forged strong links with Derby College in the past few years and currently employs four engineering apprentices who attend the college’s Roundhouse on day release.
As one of the UK’s biggest food production companies, Moy Park views apprenticeships as key to its continued success – helping the business stay innovative and develop a talented team for the future.
Dave said: “We are committed to employing more Derby College apprentices and will be taking on at least two more in engineering during 2021.”