The second cohort on CEMEX’s Logistics Apprenticeship scheme has started their one year course to become highly skilled large goods vehicle drivers. The 15 young people, all under 23 years old, include the first woman logistics apprentice, Christina Wilcox.
Following on from the first successful year it was decided to extend the apprenticeship from the Aggregate Logistics Team and include Cement Logistics, with apprentices based at 2 cement plants and 9 aggregate sites. Christina Wilcox, as well as being the first woman Logistics apprentice is also one of the first 6 cement apprentices.
“After leaving school I soon realised I wanted more from life than being office-based and I love a challenge. The CEMEX Logistics Apprentice scheme attracted me because it is a challenge and a challenge working predominantly in a man’s world. I am the fifth woman in the Logistics Team so there are not many us. Already the scheme has been enjoyable with every day bringing something new,” comments Christina.
The need for the Apprentice Scheme highlights a recognised UK skill gap, that of an aging population of large goods vehicle (LGV) drivers. This is reflected within CEMEX Logistics with 10% of all company drivers over 60 and only 0.2% under 25.
The year-long programme is run in conjunction with training provider, Systems Training, and offers a training framework to achieve a Driving Goods Apprenticeship Level 2 and Category C licence. 70% of the programme is hands-on experience, 20% involves coaching and mentoring and 10% coursework and training so apprentices gain experience driving, develop skills to work with customers, learn about health and safety and are rewarded with a nationally recognized qualification.
Currently, CEMEX has over 400 aggregate and cement vehicles covering over 15 million miles a year.