Rachel Embraces New Challenge
Following successful completion of the Computer Numerical Control (CNC) Milling Academy from ADS Northern Ireland, in partnership with Northern Regional College and the Department for the Economy we are pleased to welcome Rachel Horan to the team at McGreevy Engineering.
Read on to find out more about Rachel and the programme which brought her into engineering.
What inspired you to take part in the CNC Academy programme?
After a few jobs, which included teaching in England, I saw this as an opportunity to go back to my love of making things and solving problems and building upon my Technology and Design degree.
I like to think I’m a very practical person. I enjoy a hands-on learning approach rather than in a classroom and this was a great opportunity to do just that.
What did the Academy entail? What did you enjoy most?
The Academy was all about teaching us basic engineering, particularly conventional milling. We were assigned a partner to aid the learning process and help each other, I really enjoyed that.
Learning new skills was the best part of the course and doing things I hadn’t done before. We were introduced to code, got to solve problems and actually make various parts.
What have you learnt since you started at McGreevy Engineering? And what have you enjoyed most?
After five weeks at NRC, I came to McGreevy Engineering for my placement. The learning here has been exceptional, fast paced and very practical, which is what I enjoy. Since starting with the company full-time, I am still learning every day, but I now get to work on new machinery and make new parts which will be part of aircraft very soon.
What was the biggest challenge of the programme/starting your new career?
Not so much as a major challenge, but something very different, was learning how to code and understand how to use the new machinery.
With regards a new career, the main challenge was making the decision to go back into training after already being out in the working world. A decision I am glad I made.
Have you found any barriers impacting your engineering journey as a female in a male dominated industry?
No. I really enjoy working in engineering, for me gender is not an issue, it’s really about ability and capability.
What's the most common question people ask when they find out what you do?
Everyone wants to know what CNC milling is. It’s Computer Numerical Control i.e. the automated control of machining parts by means of a computer.
What advice would you give someone considering a career in engineering?
Don’t be afraid to try something new and somewhat out of your comfort zone. Just have a go.
What is the best thing about your job?
Being able to make something, programme a machine, and seeing the final result – a machined part in this case.
What do you hope for next?
I’m hoping to stay here for the foreseeable future, there is so much more to learn. I may possibly go back to teaching at some stage.