A CAR factory that has become a part of Cowley's identity is seeking talented teenagers to join its team.

The Oxford BMW Mini plant is looking to recruit for its apprenticeship scheme, which is open to students in Year 11-13 looking for a post-GCSE challenge.

Apprenticeships start in August onwards and cover a range of careers in the automotive industry, including engineering, maintenance and business.

Sophie Jackson, a second year engineering apprentice at MINI Plant Oxford, has encouraged more women in particular to consider the career path.

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The 20-year-old, from Didcot, said: "The apprenticeship has given me a brilliant chance to build my skills and to earn at the same time.

"I’m working with an awesome team of people and as a female I’d encourage any young women who are considering a career in our industry to check out what the apprenticeship offers.

"The launch of the first fully electric Mini is something all of us here are excited about and I’m just really proud to be able to say that I’m working where this car is actually being built."

The Oxford plant is the home of Mini production and last year launched BMW's first electric Mini, which is due to hit the streets in March.

Apprenticeships last between two and four years and cover a wide range of areas.

Depending on the programme, training leads to a Level Two or Level Three Competency Qualification, while some offer the opportunity to progress through to degree level.

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Applicants need a minimum of four or five GCSEs (dependent on the position) at Grade 3 or 5 or above, including maths and English.

For engineering and business degree apprenticeships, applicants also need relevant higher qualifications, which will be outlined in each job advert.

Simon Farrall, head of apprentice and associate training for BMW Group UK, said: "A place on our apprenticeship programme is a fantastic way of fast-tracking a career here at the BMW Group.

"The pace of technological change, product innovation and the electrification of new vehicles makes it a really exciting time for new apprentices to be joining us.

"Working in some of the most advanced manufacturing locations in the UK, alongside some of the most experienced people in the industry, we’re looking for applicants with the motivation and ideas to drive our company forward."

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Places are available at the Swindon and Hams Hall (near Birmingham) plants as well as in Oxford.

The Oxford plant is hosting an open evening for prospective applicants and their parents and teachers, on Monday, February 3.

Guests will be able to chat to current and former apprentices and their training managers.

Anyone interested in attending can register via eventbrite.co.uk on the event titled BMW Group Apprenticeship Open Evening.

Entries are open until February 28.