We Are Randox | Northern Ireland Apprenticeship Week 2022 with Kane McIlroy
Did you know that 7th – 11th February 2022 marks Apprenticeship Week in Northern Ireland?
The initiative from the Department for the Economy offers an opportunity through a dedicated week of events and promotional activity to demonstrate how apprenticeships work for individuals, business, communities and the wider economy.
To mark the week, we spoke to one of our Randox apprentices, Kane McIlroy, to find out more about his role, what he enjoys about the apprenticeship, and his advice for young people considering a career in software engineering.
Name: Kane McIlroy
Job: Software Engineering Apprentice
Department: Randox Engineering
Kane, what are the main duties of your role?
My current role is a Software Developer in the Randox Engineering R&D department. I have a keen interest in software development and in my role, I have had the opportunity to use various programming techniques. I work as part of a software team in which I write code and collaborate with others to create intuitive, responsive applications that allow users to interact with the Randox testing machines.
What and where you studied and why you chose the apprenticeship route?
I am enrolled in a Higher-level Apprenticeship with the Northern Regional College in Ballymena, where I am studying a foundation degree in Computer Science alongside my work at Randox. At Cambridge House Grammar School I studied Technology and Design for A-Level and it was during this time that I became very interested in IT. My interest in technology led me to work in Curry’s Electrical Retail Store where I was very often placed in the computer department due to my interest. I was trained in the shop’s range of hardware, software, equipment, and products. The Apprenticeship with Randox also gives me the opportunity to earn while I am still learning which is great. It means I have no student debt which is such a bonus!
What top three things you love about your job?
- As a Software Developer writing code, you will often be faced with bugs that need fixed. I really enjoy coding and the problem-solving that is involved in trying different ideas to implement the most efficient solution.
- I have had the opportunity to work on very exciting projects for a range of different Randox machines. Many of these have involved robotics, which are fascinating to work with as they allow me to implement code that instructs the machines to perform specific physical actions.
- Working in a diverse and experienced engineering team gives me the opportunity to continuously learn and challenge myself and this drives me to learn new coding skills.
What advice would you give to someone considering an apprenticeship route?
I would recommend the apprenticeship route as it is a fantastic opportunity to work, learn, and earn, all at the same time. You will get hands-on experience in a real job without having to give up your education. Financially an apprenticeship has great benefits as it provides a fully funded education without the burden of student loans. You gain experience that employers want, which will help with your future career. You also learn directly from experienced individuals working in your chosen industry and have access to their support, which helps you gain the skills and knowledge you require to achieve your goals. If the apprenticeship role is something you’re interested in and are passionate about, I would highly recommend it as an excellent career path!
We are delighted to have Kane with us at Randox as part of our Apprenticeship Scheme.
For more We Are Randox stories about our amazing colleagues, make sure to follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter and follow the hashtag #WeAreRandox.
For further information about Apprenticeships at Randox please email RandoxPR@randox.com or phone 028 9442 2413.