Apprentice 100: Meet Bill the graduate
Bill Gwiza came to Scotland as a refugee from Burundi. The 31-year-old has since put himself through university and has now secured a job with Cyberhawk as an inspection engineer.
WHAT WERE SOME OF THE BIGGEST CHALLENGES
WHEN YOU CAME TO SCOTLAND?
The language barrier was one of the biggest challenges, as English is not my first or second language. I applied to college and started attending English classes but I found this to be very slow, so I decided to apply for a job while I was studying and learn through working with my colleagues. Even though this was a bigger challenge, learning became quicker and fun.
WHAT DID YOU DO IN BURUNDI?
I was studying in Burundi, completing the equivalent of high school.
WHY DID YOU COME TO SCOTLAND?
Burundi is politically unstable which consequently has a detrimental effect on all areas of society including the economy and opportunities for education. Being away was a safer and better option – it was an opportunity to study further with the chance of securing a career.
WHAT CAREER DID YOU WANT TO GET?
I always wanted to be an engineer and working as a field engineer came with the opportunity to experience a variety of work scopes.
WHAT UNIVERSITY DID YOU GO TO AND WHAT DID YOU STUDY?
I attended Heriot-Watt University. I graduated with a BEng in Mechanical Engineering (2008-12), Masters of Science in Energy (2012-13) and Masters in Architectural Engineering (2013-14).
HOW DID YOU HEAR ABOUT CYBERHAWK?
I heard about Cyberhawk through Heriot-Watt’s careers service, which offers a wide range of workshops and events. The company was advertised via ScotGrad and after some careful research, I applied for a job knowing Cyberhawk would be the perfect career step, helping me build on my skill set and develop in my chosen field.
HOW HAVE YOU ENJOYED YOUR TRAINEESHIP?
I have received training from day one, first in the office, then in the field working alongside experienced pilots and inspection engineers with a periodical progress review. The support I have received as a graduate, the chance to work on various projects, encouragement from all members of the team and the recognition is what makes Cyberhawk an excellent company to work for, and I hope to progress here for many years to come.