Building careers: Students meet construction employers for National Apprenticeship Week

STUDENTS celebrated National Apprenticeship Week by meeting with a group of construction employers at the Isle Campus in Wisbech.

The College of West Anglia campus held the event on Wednesday as part of the national week (February 6-10), which aims to highlight the “talents and skills of apprentices”.

The 25 first year construction students met employers and current apprentices to learn about the benefits of their training.

Construction contractors Kier Eastern, who have an office in Wisbech, place apprentices at sites across the region.

Anne Pounds, the company’s apprentice manager, said: “We are looking for exceptional individuals for this apprenticeship programme. Our aim is give young people the opportunity to take the first step to building a career in construction.


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“Apprenticeships are a great option for any age and experience and we encourage applicants from a diverse range of backgrounds.

“This is a brilliant opportunity, but it will require you to get up early, work in all kinds of weather and study in your spare time. If you want to build a great career this is something you will be happy to do.”

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The event was co-hosted by CITB-ConstructionSkills, the Sector Skills Council and Industry Training Board for construction. Contractors had the chance to recruit new apprentices from a pool of applicants.

Mick O’Flynn, from CITB-ConstructionSkills, said: “These open days are hugely important to local construction businesses.

“With 17% of the workforce now within 10 years of retirement, it is essential that contractors seek out and secure the most talented new recruits to take their business into the future.

“We are working hard to bring an injection of new blood to the local construction industry which is fundamental for the region to stay competitive.”

A similar event took place at Thomas Clarkson Community College, in Wisbech.

Dermot Raftery, construction course leader at Thomas Clarkson, said: “Having the opportunity to meet directly with employers and apprentices allowed our Year 10 students to understand the diversity of the industry and discover more about the various careers available.

“This kind of learning - where the students can ask real questions about roles, skills, responsibilities and even pay - brings construction to life and gets them really excited about their professional path ahead.”

For more information about a career in construction and on CITB-ConstructionSkills Apprenticeship Programme please visit www.bconstructive.co.uk or www.cskills.org/apprenticeships

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