Around 50 young construction students at New College Lanarkshire are settling into frontline work as part of New College Lanarkshire’s biggest ever training placement scheme for would-be building trades apprentices.
The 16-24 year-old Construction Pre-Apprentices are taking part in six weeks of on-the-job work experience with nearly 20 companies in Lanarkshire and Glasgow – ranging from some of the biggest names in the construction industry to smaller local firms – in a move aimed at showcasing the youngsters’ skills to potential employers.
Employers taking part in this year’s scheme are The Cruden Group, GRAHAM Construction, Morrison Construction, Timetra, Kier Group, Alarmfast, Seal Eco, Red Deer Village, Grant Weir Joiners, Paver Systems, Allied Interiors, Burnbrae Contracts, Mitie, Avondale Roofing, Alarmfast, North Lanarkshire Care and Repair, Gordon Shanks Joiners & Builders Ltd and Custom Built Joinery.
Among the locations the students will be working at are GRAHAM Construction’s £18.6 million, 416-bed student accommodation project at St. James Road, Glasgow and at the new Greenfaulds High School project in Cumbernauld, working for Morrison and Allied Interiors.
The young learners come from Wishaw, Stepps, Holytown, Motherwell, Hamilton, Uddingston, Carluke, Cumbernauld, Airdrie, Larkhall, Bellshill, Cambuslang, Bothwell, Coatbridge, Blantyre and Shotts.
The Construction Pre Apprentice course provides students with training in topics including carpentry and joinery, painting and decorating, bricklaying, plumbing, construction drawing and health and safety.
All students have had to pass the Construction Skills Certification scheme (CSCS) to proceed with their placements and go onsite.
Martyn Campbell, Curriculum & Quality Leader (Construction), at New College Lanarkshire said:
“We have been running the Pre Apprentice course for 10 years in different formats and it has had significant success in securing apprenticeships for students wanting a career in the manual construction trades.
“The fact that we have been able to send so many students on placement in 2016 highlights the strong relationship we have with employers and their confidence in the quality of basic training we provide.
“We know employers are very keen to offer apprenticeships to bright and motivated young people and so they will be watching the performance of students very closely over the next few weeks.
“We hope this exercise will allow employers to spot the potential of our students at first hand, while giving the students themselves valuable insight to day-to-day working life in the industry.
“All of this is not possible without the goodwill and co-operation of employers and we are indebted to them for their assistance.”
The Course is moving to full-time only from August 2016 and more details about it are available from New College Lanarkshire’s website www.nclanarkshire.ac.uk.
Kim Scanlin, Work Placement Coordinator for the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB), said:
“This New College Lanarkshire initiative is an excellent example of how industry, colleges, local employers and the CITB are working together to ensure we get the right people into the industry and offer young people a rewarding career in construction.”
Among this year’s students on placement is Anton McGraw (17), from Viewpark in Uddingston.
The former pupil at Cardinal Newman High School in Bellshill will be working with Cruden in the East End of Glasgow.
He said: “I love the course – bricklaying and joinery are my favourite subjects.
“I’m really looking forward to the placement. Getting experience on a building site is fantastic and hopefully will lead to a job for me.”