Like a lot of young people his age, London-based Mahesh Sukumaran found himself joining an apprenticeship scheme at a crossroads in his life.
“I was in a position where I was in a football scholarship and I got an injury so I just needed to move on to another thing. I heard about the apprenticeships when I was searching through about the London Underground and I came across Morson Training. I thought at the time that was the right decision and I got in touch, got through to an interview and it went from there.”
Mahesh found his experience to be of the highest quality:
“I thought the trainers themselves were really good, they made sure we all kept up with our work, and made sure we got it submitted on time. The education side of everything as great. The most enjoyable side for me personally was the practical side of things. Me, I’m more of a practical kind of person so I preferred to be on track. When I was going out on track when we had to come inside afterwards to do the write up, it made it a lot easier for me because I knew what I was talking about because I’d done it. That was the best part for me.”
Mahesh finished his apprenticeship in 2018. That same year, Morson Training took home the award for Best Apprenticeship at the Transport for London Supplier Awards, an award which recognised Morson Training’s record of putting quality before quantity, ensuring all apprentices are embedded with fundamental skills for their development as employees. This includes aspects of their lives outside of basic rail training, such as finance.
The award was also a celebration of Morson Training’s commitment to social inclusion and mobilisation, with representatives within the London boroughs and wider groups working with a network of school and combined authorities to support, challenge and promote the benefits of engineering to a wide range of underrepresented groups.
Mahesh has worked on the London Underground in various capacities ever since he completed his apprenticeship:
“Currently I’m a PWT working on more of the protection side. I go onto the track and I arrange protection for the group of workers that I work with. This can vary in terms of location, it’s all over the London Underground network. I just go to wherever I need to be on each shift.”
When asked his view on apprenticeships, Mahesh echoes the sentiments of many of his peers:
“I’d say to anyone who is thinking about doing a rail apprenticeship, definitely do it. I would advise especially if they’re more practically minded, they should go ahead, there’s a lot of progression in the field too. If you stick your head down and focus, you can basically go as far as you want.”
Morson Training’s Operations & Apprenticeship manager Andrew Robinson said:
“Mahesh joined us at a crossroads in his working life but has gone from strength to strength moving through the ranks and up to PWT. He relished the practical aspect of the apprenticeship and is developing real leadership skills in this new role and has been a great mentor to the new apprentices too, sharing his experiences. We look forward to seeing his continued progress with Morson Group”.