The last in the Activate Learning Education Trust (ALET) Industry Insights Talk series for this academic year was given on Wednesday 15 July by a panel from the IT Giant, Fujitsu.  

Fujitsu is a leading provider of IT products and services for the global marketplace including hardware, software, networking, business solutions and more! They are also a great supporter of a number of UTCs throughout the country, running projects, mock assessment centres, mock interviews and employing students into apprenticeships straight from school or college every year. 

Students heard from Mark Cone, Delivery Executive from Fujitsu, who introduced the company and talked through his 35 years working for them. He had joined as a stopgap after leaving school with mediocre results and then ended up staying as the company had offered him many opportunities. During that time, he has worked in 17 different roles, using the strong culture of continuous development at Fujitsu to adapt and enhance his career depending on his current interests. Mark also spoke about the entry points into a career at Fujitsu, whether as an apprentice, a graduate or mid-career, which let us nicely to Ryan Whittlesay, currently in the first year of an apprenticeship at Fujitsu.  

Ryan explained how the apprenticeship is structured, with one day a week at university and half a day a week kept free from work for studying. His learning at university is directly tied into what he is doing at work, so for example he learnt about configuring networks then went straight on to working to double the capacity of a network in real life.  

The third of the panel was Rob Loseby, who was told at school that he couldn’t touch computers as he wasn’t intelligent enough. Later on, Rob was diagnosed with dyslexia, dyspraxia and dyscalculia, which he learnt to overcome, in part during a successful career in the Army. During his time in the Army he learnt to mend engines, encryption, learnt a lot of maths, worked on digital radios and finally was in charge of tanks! He then left to join General Dynamics, working on tank design. His main message for the students was, if you really want to do it then don’t let anyone tell you can’t! In addition, he advised students to push themselves and not rest on their laurels.  

Many thanks to the three panellists and everyone who joined us for this fascinating insight into careers at Fujitsu.