​An apprentice lift engineer - what an opportunity!

Twenty year old Sophie Healy, like her employer Stannah, is all for equal opportunities and from day one she has been fascinated by engineered products.

So, it was no surprise to friends and family that she followed her formal education path right into a fabulous engineering apprenticeship opportunity, away from her home region of St. Albans, where she attended Loreto College, to be based in Brackley, Northamptonshire. As part of the lift engineering team, maintaining, repairing and servicing lifts, Sophie loves the variety day to day - as well as the huge amount she is learning. The lift servicing team travel over the South Midlands and Home Counties region of England and no two days are ever the same.

Sophie is keen to tell others about her career choice and comments:

“Every day is different. We may have scheduled visits in high security city buildings or a scheduled visit to Legoland. Inbetween our planned lift service visits we may get an unscheduled emergency call-out in a place I’ve never been before. My mentor says it doesn’t matter how long you have been on the job, 4 weeks or 40 years, you are always learning. Training is a huge part of the job with new products and technologies coming on board constantly. It’s a great hands-on job one minute and demands all the social skills you can muster another minute - managing our customers, the equipment and the people who use it. I find call-outs exciting, even if it turns out to be a misaligned roller, rather than smoke and oil drama. I have already learnt never to under estimate the problem. What seems like a five minute job may turn out to be so much more! My favourite tale to date is a lift in St. Albans that wouldn’t move. Automatic systems cut in if there is an obstruction but nothing seemed to be there …until we spotted a pistachio nut caught under the safety edge of the lift car! There’s a moral in that story, lifts and food are not an ideal combination. Some of my friends say I must be nuts (excuse the pun) to do this job but I absolutely love it. My family are delighted I have chosen something different and rewarding. There is a clear career pathway if I study hard and soak up all the experience of the engineering team. I really have changed from being a shy and quiet teenager, to being more confident and able to talk to anyone. I’m a bit of a bore when there’s a lift involved in a social situation - but it’s a great party piece!”

Sophie has already achieved an Engineering Level 3 BTEC, Electrical Engineering HNC and is working towards her NVQ 3 in Lift Servicing.

Stannah offers all kinds of apprenticeships in all areas of its business. The company has over 360 lift engineers across the UK keeping the nation’s lift and escalator stock safe and efficient. If you are interested in working for the UK’s largest independent lift company go to www.stannah.com and follow the career pathway.