Manufacturing Engineering Degree Apprentice

  • Level 6-7 (Degree)
  • Portsmouth


AIRBUS Defence and Space Limited

Airbus pioneers sustainable aerospace for a safe and united world. The Company constantly innovates to provide efficient and technologically-advanced solutions in aerospace, defence, and connected services. In commercial aircraft, Airbus offers modern and fuel-efficient airliners and associated services. Airbus is also a European leader in defence and security and one of the world’s leading space businesses. In helicopters, Airbus provides the most efficient civil and military rotorcraft solutions and services worldwide.

Job Description

Manufacturing Engineering Degree Apprentice

Start Date:  September 2022

Duration: 4 years

Location:  Portsmouth

Application Closing Date: 20th February 2022 – however, this role could be closed sooner, subject to high application numbers. Therefore, you are advised to apply as soon as possible, to avoid missing out on this excellent opportunity!

Launch an exciting career by joining our Airbus Apprenticeship Programme! Our Apprentices receive second to none training, gaining the necessary skills, knowledge and experience to enable you to make an immediate contribution when you enter the workforce.  

About us!

Our Degree Apprenticeships offer a full degree with no fees, plus vocational training with a regular salary.

You will study towards a BEng Manufacturing Engineering degree at Chichester University. The course is intended to equip graduates with a relevant range of engineering skills related to manufacturing engineering and will include the following modules:

Level 4

  • Mathematical Principles I
  • Mechanical Principles
  • Electrical Principles
  • Computer Aided Engineering
  • 1st Year Workplace Report
  • 1st Year Engineering Labs

Level 5

  • Control & Instrumentation
  • Mathematical Principles II
  • 2nd Year Engineering Workplace Projects
  • 2nd Year Mechanical Labs
  • Dynamic Systems
  • Statics & Materials

Level 6

  • Thermo-fluids
  • Manufacturing Processes
  • Mechanical Failure Analysis
  • Individual Engineering Workplace Projects
  • Renewable Energy & Sustainability
  • Business for Engineers

The course duration is four years, with 1.5 days per week at University in the first year and 1 day per week at university in the remaining three years. You will spend 3.5 and 4 days a week respectively, applying your knowledge as part of the Airbus Spacecraft Production team.

While ‘in the office’, you will undertake three year-long placements and three four month placements.

What you will be doing:

You will spend the first year as an assembly technician within our world class Spacecraft Production operations team, getting hands-on with the build of Airbus’s satellites. This will give you a solid foundation in understanding how telecommunications satellites are built and will give you the opportunity to develop a strong relationship with our operations team. You will be provided with two weeks of technical training prior to this placement, to give you the specific skills required to be a competent technician. You will be expected to work an alternating early/late shift pattern during this period.

In the second year of the course you will join your ‘home’ department, (Assembly Engineering) as a support process engineer. This is the team into which you will graduate at the end of the 4 year course. Assembly Engineering is a team dedicated to the mechanical support of assembly operations and the hub of spacecraft manufacturing innovation in the UK. As a support process engineer you will learn the engineering competencies necessary to support manufacture and use the experience developed in operations, to improve technical processes. You will also be involved in the resolution of shopfloor non-quality, working as part of a team to develop solutions to complex engineering problems.

Year three will be divided into three 4-month placements, in the departments Assembly Engineering collaborate most closely with. The departments are:

  • Spacecraft Production Quality Assurance
  • Spacecraft Production Test Processes
  • Spacecraft Production Planning

You will learn the methods of these teams and gain an understanding of their important relationships with the Assembly Engineering team.

Finally, year 4 will be a pathway year into becoming a qualified Manufacturing Engineer (ME). Throughout this year you will be a trainee ME, working to influence the production processes and philosophies, to improve spacecraft assembly efficiency. Your role will be to optimise production to improve cost / schedule efficiency and reduce non-quality. You will be at the forefront of R&D and have the opportunity to pioneer spacecraft production methodologies.

Upon successful completion of the apprenticeship and university course, you will continue in Assembly Engineering as a qualified Manufacturing Engineer.

You will be allocated a ‘buddy’ to guide you through the year and answer any questions you may have.


In order to be eligible for this exciting apprenticeship opportunity, you must have any of the following:

  • 3 A Levels – grade C or above (to include mathematics and preferably a technology subject) OR;
  • BTEC vocational qualification at Level 3 OR;
  • Level 3 apprenticeship OR;
  • Equivalent qualifications
  • Relevant work experience

And a minimum of 5 GCSE’s (or equivalent) including Grade 4 (C) in English and Mathematics

In addition, you will be able to demonstrate the following;

  • A keen interest in the space industry and a basic knowledge of spacecraft design.
  • Basic knowledge of manufacturing systems and processes.
  • Basic knowledge of mechanical, electrical and RF principles.
  • Good mathematical and statistical analysis competencies.
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team.
  • Good written and verbal communication skills.

Please ensure that a covering letter detailing motivations and suitability for this position is included in your application.

Please note, we love your interest in working for Airbus but we do ask that you make only one application. We encourage you to take time to decide which of our exciting opportunities is right for you and then submit an application that best represents you, your skills and experience in connection with the role you have selected.

One application: Make It Possible, Make It Happen, Make It …Count!


Beyond the qualifications and training you will complete as an Airbus Apprentice, you will also receive:

  • Competitive Salary
  • 25 Days Holiday and Bank Holidays
  • 37 Hour working week
  • Independent, 24 hour confidential counselling service


Please let us know if you need us to make any adjustments to allow you to access and participate fully in the recruitment process. If you wish to discuss this further please contact via email Any information disclosed will be treated in the strictest confidence.

This job requires an awareness of any potential compliance risks and a commitment to act with integrity, as the foundation for the Company’s success, reputation and sustainable growth.

By submitting your CV or application you are consenting to Airbus using and storing information about you for monitoring purposes relating to your application or future employment. This information will only be used by Airbus.
Airbus is committed to achieving workforce diversity and creating an inclusive working environment. We welcome all applications irrespective of social and cultural background, age, gender, disability, sexual orientation or religious belief.