Rail Track EngineeringRail track engineering pre-apprentice Kai Shepherd at CONEL.

A young engineer is hoping to emulate his family’s proud track record of working on the railways.

Kai Shepherd, 18, is set to become the third generation in his family to work in the rail industry by following in the footsteps of two of his uncles and his great uncle.

Between them they work in the sector for London Underground, global engineering giant Thales and construction and engineering consultancy TPS.

Kai is studying for a Pre-apprenticeship in Rail Track Engineering Level 2 at the College of Haringey, Enfield and North East London (CONEL), which is celebrating Rail Week from 9-13 October.

Pre-Apprenticeships are short courses that provide a stepping stone to apprenticeships by training students in essential skills for their chosen career.

Kai said: ““I’ve been around railway engineering all my life. It feels like it’s in my blood.

“My first inspiration is my uncle who works in signalling on London Underground. My other uncle works for Thales and my great uncle works for TPS.

“They told me it was a good trade to be in and gave me some guidance. Without that, I might not be here now.

“I did some research of my own and found the course at CONEL. I got some information and was sold immediately. The next day I came in and enrolled.”

Kai praised his tutors who communicated different aspects of the course clearly with examples from their own experience of working in the industry.

“I’m not the type to sit in an office. I love physical work and using my hands, which is why an apprenticeship appealed to me,” he said.

“This is the first step in helping me to get to where I want to go. It’s given me everything I need, and hopefully I can do my family proud and work my way up.”

Rail Week is a national initiative run by Young Rail Professionals that brings the industry together for a week of rail events, visits and talks.

Call 020 8442 3442 or click here for more information on the Pre-Apprenticeship in Rail Track Engineering Level 2 at the College of Haringey, Enfield and North East London (CONEL).

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