The College and Gamesa have been in discussions for a number of months over possible models to help the company meet its expanding labour needs in the South of Scotland. A stakeholder briefing was held last Friday (Friday 6th May) attended by partner bodies such as East Ayrshire Council, Energy Skills Partnership, Skills Development Scotland, the Department of Work and Pensions and Ayrshire Chamber of Commerce, alongside local political representatives including Alan Brown MP and Provost Jim Todd.

Following these discussions Gamesa will now offer up to 10 full time roles to suitable candidates from the College’s most recent turbine technician graduates. The company has recently employed two graduates of the College’s current turbine technician course and is looking to increase the number going forward.

The emerging partnership will also see Gamesa support the College in delivering a new transitional training course for experienced local engineers to retrain as wind turbine technicians. The College has applied for funding from Skills Development Scotland to facilitate the course, which would be supplemented by Gamesa through both a financial and an ‘in kind’ contribution to support candidates. The company will offer direct candidate support to address any gaps in subsistence funding and will provide access to Gamesa technology, staff and wider resources.

Gamesa Energy UK Limited (Gamesa) is a subsidiary of Gamesa Corporación Technológica, which is a global technological leader in the wind industry, having installed close to 33,500 MW across 54 countries and continues to manage the operation and maintenance services for more than 20,600 MW. The company manufacture and supply turbines worldwide and have a strong track record in the South West, with 322 Gamesa turbines installed/ordered (638.8 MW) in South West Scotland alone to date.

The company also develops their own wind farms and is currently proposing to develop the 12 turbine Glenouther Renewable Energy Park on Glenouther Moor near Fenwick, which will be determined by the East Ayrshire Planning Committee this Friday.

Laura Fleming, UK Director of Development at Gamesa, said “I would like to thank all our partners and stakeholders who attended the meetings at the Kilmarnock Campus last Friday. We have been so impressed with the level of dedication from the College and the other partners to deliver real opportunities for both the current student body and also the wider population of the region.

“Going forward we are keen to develop a partnership that delivers in both the short and long term. Given our immediate need for well trained, specialised wind turbine technicians in the South of Scotland we are keen to provide opportunities for those students currently undertaking the turbine technician course at the College to gain employment with Gamesa. We have been impressed with the quality training provided to the students and have already made a number of full time appointments from those who have completed the course in previous years. We now look forward to increasing this number and will be holding an open day in the coming months to begin the selection process.

“We do not however want to adopt only a short term approach. Gamesa has a growing portfolio in the South West, including plans for a wind farm near Fenwick, which if consented would necessitate an ongoing need for technicians in the area. We believe that through our partnership with the College and in particular the transitional training course, we can achieve a sustainable model to deliver ongoing employment opportunities in the region.”

Stuart Millar, Director of Education Contracts & Business Development – Ayrshire College, said “We are delighted to be partnering with Gamesa to deliver employment for our current students, and to create a new transitional training course that will afford local people impacted by the downturn in the Oil and Gas sector in particular, an opportunity to retrain and restart their careers in the renewable sector. Since we made the call for interested candidates to come forward we have received a significant number of high calibre applicants and look forward to working with Gamesa and our other partners to get the course up and running for the start of the new academic year.”

Alan Brown, MP for Kilmarnock and Loudoun, said “I was pleased to be able to attend such a positive meeting of the College and Gamesa partnership. This is a fantastic opportunity for learning and jobs, and I am hopeful there will be even more jobs created in the years ahead.”



Ayrshire College

Gamesa Energy UK

Skills Development Scotland

East Ayrshire Council

Ayrshire Chamber of Commerce

Department of Work and Pensions