Sheffield students and jobseekers learn mechanics of the military

Students and jobseekers from Sheffield had a taste of life in the army after being given a crash course by the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers.

Dozens of youngsters from South Yorkshire signed up for the course, trying their hand at everything from vehicle recovery to an obstacle course.

They were put through their paces by 102 Battalion Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers, an Army Reserve unit.The 17 to 25-year-olds hope to put the skills they have learnt on the Armed Forces Employability Pathways into practice either in the military or on Civvy Street.

The group of 43, who volunteered through their colleges or employment schemes, travelled to windswept Warcop Training Area in Cumbria.

Many of them were from the military skills course with the Learning Curve Group in Sheffield and the Diploma for Entry to the Uniformed Services at Rotherham College’s Dinnington campus.

They completed a 1000m obstacle course, where they were taught to “never leave a man behind”.

Instructors also showed them the basics of camouflage and concealment as well as testing their wits on a series of command tasks.

They then had a go at the one and half mile run which potential recruits have to do as part of their fitness assessment.

Troops from 1 CS REME helped them to build beach buggies, lay bridges and recover vehicles trapped in the mud using a Tirfor winch.They were also taught the basics of metalsmith work and taken to the armoury where they were shown how to strip a SA80 A2 assault weapon.

Some course attendees have gone on to do five weeks of training and work placements while others have returned to college to finish their education.

Warrant Officer Class 2 John Jones said: “We try and teach them our key values of courage, discipline, respect, integrity, loyalty and selfless commitment.

“These are the six pillars which support everything that the British Army does and they can apply them to everything they do in life.”