SJG International, the Alcester based market leading manufacturer of rubber extrusions, gaskets and foam conversions recently welcomed two year 17-year-old students for a week’s work experience.

The work experience followed a factory tour ran during the spring with a group of local students and precedes a further tour from a group of RSA Academy Arrow Vale students in October.

The students, from St Augustine’s High School in Redditch, had expressed a keen interest to learn more about local engineering and were not left disappointed, as they embarked on a week long tour of the entire company.

“We wanted them to learn and see firsthand all aspects of the business” comments SJG Managing Director Robert James. “From Accounts, to Purchasing, Sales to Design – we felt that it was important for them to understand that a manufacturing company is not only about designing and making things, it is also comprised of vital support functions and professions that they could explore as a career”.

However, it was unsurprising that with the students being engineering and design minded, they enjoyed the design area most of all.

Robert continues: “Whilst learning about the design side of the business, the students were able to design a foam promotional item that showcased the products that we manufacture in the factory. Once designed, they then went onto the shop floor to watch the product that they designed be manufactured.

“It is so crucial that we link the idea of design to manufacture when talking about careers in industry. For young people to progress in manufacturing, particularly if they want to become Design Engineers, they first need to ensure that they have a comprehensive understanding of how the products that they will be designing are made”.

The featured image of this article displays a photograph of the finished product.

Co-Director Lucy Simpson adds: “It was such a pleasure to inspire and open the minds of these two individuals to how our company works and to hopefully have a positive impact when it comes to them making future career decisions.

“We are proud to be engaging the next generation locally via activity organised by Next Gen Makers. Many of our current employees were educated at these schools, so we hope that this kind of profile-raising activity will position us as a local employer of choice in the longer terms and ensure that future generations choose to become part of our workforce too”.