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  • 16/03/2020
  • Media Releases

LIBERTY Steel Group looks to youth for long-term greener steel future

LIBERTY Steel Group is investing in the young engineers of the future with the announcement that its Speciality Steels business in South Yorkshire is hiring a new group of apprentices for the upcoming academic year.

LIBERTY is offering 20 Level 3 and Degree apprenticeships in a variety of engineering specialisms, covering electrical, mechanical and materials across its South Yorkshire business. A further 10 apprentices will be hired across LIBERTY Steel Group’s other UK businesses.

LIBERTY’s Speciality Steels’ apprenticeship programme, which operates across sites in Stocksbridge and Rotherham, is renowned in the region and was selected as a Centrica Top 100 Apprenticeship Employer in 2018.

Apprentices joining Speciality Steels will have the opportunity to learn and work in a business producing high grades of steel for demanding applications such as the aerospace, oil & gas, automotive and motorsport industries.

They will also have the chance to shape LIBERTY Steel Group’s transition to carbon-neutral status by 2030 as it aims to be the first global largescale steel producer to achieve this ambitious goal.

The Speciality Steels business in Rotherham is already ahead of the curve on reducing emissions as it uses an Electric Arc Furnace (EAF) to melt scrap steel and produce new steel products, bypassing the carbon emissions from blast furnace steel production.

Apprenticeships enable students to study locally while earning a salary and experience from hands-on and practical engineering tasks.

Mick Hood, LIBERTY Steel Group’s UK HR Director: “As someone who joined Speciality Steels as an apprentice over 40 years ago, I can testify to the positive impact the apprenticeship can have on a career in specialist engineering.

“This is a business steeped in rich local heritage but one that also has a global reach. Apprentices at LIBERTY are part of an operation involved in the production of steel for civil aircraft undercarriages that land somewhere in the world on average every three seconds.”

The closing deadline for applications is 30 April and information on applying can be found here:

LIBERTY Steel Group is also a headline sponsor of the ‘Get up to Speed with STEM’ event at the Magna Science Adventure Centre in Rotherham on 25 March where current staff will be on hand to provide insight into working for the company.

What’s it like to be a LIBERTY apprentice?

Dylan Sanderson

Dylan is an 18-year-old doing an Electrical Engineering Degree Apprenticeship and is in his first year of five.

“I’ve always liked engineering. I made stuff for my mates like go-karts when I was younger and then I did resistant materials in school and decided I liked it. I did engineering at college level and once I finished there, thought I’d get an apprenticeship.

“All my family members do office jobs – no-one does any manual work! There’s loads of lads so it’s a good atmosphere to work in. Working wise, I think the instructors are good and teach what you want to know and don’t blabber on.

On his choice of further education – “I was deciding between a straight degree at university and just a normal apprenticeship. When I found out about degree apprenticeships, that made my mind up because I don’t have any debt and I get paid by Liberty. It was just a better option really.”

On a future role at LIBERTY – “One place I wouldn’t mind going is the high voltage department for the Electric Arc Furnace at Rotherham as it looks interesting. You’re dealing with about 40,000 volts so you’ve got to be careful!

Josh White

Josh is a fully qualified mechanical engineer, who is 22 and been with LIBERTY Speciality Steels for six years since starting the apprenticeship. Josh is now also training to be an electrical engineer.

“I don’t know if LIBERTY wants to multi-skill people in the future – a lot of companies nowadays like to see multi-skilling – so I thought I’d put my name down for the electrical training. I won’t be an electrician but I’ll have some knowledge. For example, if one of the electricians in our five man team is off sick and the team needs some help, at least I can offer some knowledge. The company opted to put me and two other guys on this course and pay for it. They look after us in that regard. It makes you a better engineer.

On the benefits of shift work – Even though I might look tired and worn out, working shifts – days, nights, afternoons – is the best way to learn! That’s when I’ve had big jobs and enjoyed getting involved with some projects. My apprenticeship was good but now that I’m into the job properly, shift-work has been the highlight. The money also helps the enjoyment of shifts but you have to work for it!

On life outside of work – I support Sheffield Wednesday and play 9-aside football on a Monday night. If I’d got my finger out, I’d have probably made it as a footballer! When I was younger, I had my chances but I’d prefer to be on my bike outside the front of the house. That was my attitude to it. But you don’t understand when you’re eight years old.

Further information from:

Andrew Clark
Media Relations
GFG Alliance

+ 44 7932 677184

Henry Evans
Media Relations
GFG Alliance

+44 7540 249364