An Apprenticeship Less Ordinary

The ‘Nissan Generation Next Apprenticeship Academy’ to create 100 jobs to help to future-proof the motor industry


Today, Nissan Ireland Chief Executive James McCarthy, announced the Nissan Ireland Nationwide Apprenticeship Scheme is now open for applications from the ‘technicians of tomorrow’. This innovative new apprenticeship scheme aims to create 100 jobs over the next four years.

Applications will be accepted from Monday 2nd February until March 9th and are open to anyone over the age of 16 focussed on a career in cars with industry leading training.

Successful applicants will be enrolled in the 7 Phase SOLAS Motor Apprenticeship programme, attend 3 off-site training phases and work on placement in a Nissan Network Dealer. In addition, throughout their apprenticeship they will be supported by the Nissan Ireland Training Academy ensuring they reach the highest standards possible.

“We are introducing this scheme to tackle the identified short to medium term, skilled labour shortage in our industry,” says McCarthy, “With the increase of car buyers choosing new cars for their value, economy, safety and environmental merits, the days of the gifted amateur are over; we need to future-proof Nissan Ireland’s technical staff to have technicians as highly trained as our cars technology demands. Over the next four years, we see opportunities for up to 100 full time jobs for trained technicians”

What makes this apprenticeship scheme less ordinary is Nissan Ireland’s constant encouragement of trainees throughout the familiar apprenticeship model to succeed. And to know that on successful completion of their apprenticeship, top scoring graduates will be given the opportunity to further their career to include scholarships into D.I.T Automotive third-level degree courses while employed full-time and advancement into the Nissan Generation Next academy, where they will receive Nissan Master Technician training (including entry into NISTEC Nissan’s world-wide skills competition).

Nissan Ireland Training and Technical Manager, Ken Ward – who having trained as an apprentice himself - sees the value of offering young apprentices a career plan and job security alongside a higher level of technical ability and qualification. “My experience in the motor industry has given me a clear understanding that the future of the industry is reliant on educated capable technicians,” he explains, “Technicians infused with the ability to both understand and master existing and future technology associated with an innovative brand like Nissan and the automotive industry in general.”

With the introduction of ground breaking products like the Nissan Qashqai, Ireland’s top selling crossover since its introduction in 2007, and the 100% Electric Nissan LEAF, this apprenticeship scheme offers the next generation of motor technicians the opportunity to work with Nissan’s new motoring technologies and advance their career with a truly exciting brand that is leading the way in motoring innovation, as well learn the traditional skills of motor mechanics.

Joint Project manager with Ken Ward in the development of the scheme, Michael O’Connor, Technical Trainer and Technical Support at Nissan Ireland, says, “Apprenticeships in our industry play a vital role in providing the master craftspeople and industry leaders of the future. At Nissan Ireland, we fully realise this and we feel strongly that it is time that we redefine the role of Apprentices in industry and provide parity of esteem of the apprenticeship model to traditional career path routes."

SOLAS director Ray Kelly adds, “We are delighted to see today’s announcement from Nissan Ireland.  Innovative programmes such as this, where employers are engaging with the Apprenticeship system to train people for the future, are crucial as the economy recovers.”