Engineering Success For Former Student

I’m Jack, I’m 18 years old and I’m currently a Race Mechanic at Carlin for their European FIA Formula 3 team.

When we are in U.K preparing cars I have a joint responsibility with my number 1 mechanic to maintain and prepare the car for the next event. I also have the sole responsibility of maintaining, checking and rebuilding the driveshafts on all 4 F3 cars. My job takes me all around Europe and I’ve also been lucky enough to work for the team at the Macau Grand Prix in China! 

I attended The Henley College from September 2015 studying a BTEC in Engineering achieving D*D*D* and distinction in every unit across the two years. 

When I joined The Henley College I was really impressed with how supportive the college was and how keen they were for us to push ourselves and reach our full potential. The atmosphere at the college was also very comfortable and I found it easy to make new friends. 

I chose to come to The Henley College because I knew I wanted to study engineering and the college offered a very structured course and had good results in the years prior to me joining. The college was also a much more relaxed environment where I had a lot more independence than I would have done if I’d stayed on at sixth form. I think this not only helped my studies but I found the environment made it easier to make new friends and to have a life away from my studies!

My best memory of The Henley College was when I achieved my goal of getting triple distinction star. This was because for the final stage of the course whilst I was travelling with work and working long hours it became incredible tough to complete the course with the grades I wanted. Although, with the support of the college and Carlin, I was able not only to achieve D*D*D* but also persevered to gain distinction in every unit. 

I’ve always wanted to work in motorsport as I love the competition of racing and the fast paced work environment that it offers. The opportunity of travelling was also a big factor as I’m now abroad twice a month and seeing more and more of the world, whilst being paid and doing something I love! 

I’ve always been interested in all things mechanical from a very young age and when I chose my G.C.S.E’s I steered my subjects towards engineering. When I was deciding what to do after my G.C.S.E’s I knew that I wanted to dedicate all of my time to engineering which is why I chose to do a level 3 extended BTEC in Engineering at The Henley College. During my time at school and college I also took part in numerous work experience weeks including spending a week at Formula 1 team; Williams on their taster week. Work experience was incredibly valuable to me as not only did it help me confirm the career path I wanted to take, I also learnt about different skills and engineering processes that linked in nicely with my course and current job. 

Before I joined Carlin my goal always was to work in Formula 1 as it is an incredible challenge and seems very exciting. On the other hand, since being at Carlin I’ve really enjoyed working for them and now the team is competing in IndyCar in America, the opportunities and prospects within the company are very exciting!

When the opportunity of a job at Carlin arose I knew that I had to grab the opportunity with both hands. However, I was still at college completing my course which I did not want to give up either. Instead of the college forcing me to choose one or the other, they fully supported my decision to complete the final 6 months of the course whilst working full time at Carlin. As you can imagine this required an incredible amount of work but thanks to the support of my teachers, Carlin and the college, I was able to complete the course with distinction in every unit across the two years, whilst starting a full time career in motorsport. 

My advice for a 15-16 year old thinking about their future would be; if you’re interested in how things work, mechanical things and engineering then consider doing a BTEC in engineering as I found my course at The Henley College very rewarding and it’s helped me to achieve my dream!