One of the most important benefits of work experience is its potential to provide opportunities for students to learn about their own abilities. It helps them to explore their strengths and weaknesses and identify gaps within their skills.
The Heart of Worcestershire College and J. Harper & Sons (Leominster) Ltd have pooled together resources to support 24 students to gain invaluable work experience on a development in Redditch, which is being constructed in partnership with Redditch Borough Council and Bromsgrove District Council.
Following our award through the Procure Partnerships West Midlands Framework, the development comprises of 19 affordable properties. During their placements the students are helping to build the first development of council houses in Redditch in over 20 years.
George, a Level 2 Bricklaying Student at the Heart of Worcestershire College explained the importance of these work experience placements “I have really enjoyed learning new things and having the opportunity to work on a real site. I loved the environment and the team I worked with. The placement has helped me gain confidence and an insight into how the industry works pushing me towards wanting to continue in this industry. This is an excellent opportunity that has been provided through the WEX programme”
George has recently completed his placement on site and has successfully secured a full-time job with a groundwork’s subcontractor upon completion of his studies – an amazing achievement that highlights the importance of these opportunities for the students’ future careers.
Elliott, who is pictured above has gone over and beyond his allocated work experience hours to gain as much onsite experience as possible. He has since been offered a carpentry apprenticeship with the subcontractor who is working on the scheme at Edgeworth. It’s fantastic to see young talent fulfilling the many roles that are available throughout the industry.
The work experience opportunities are allowing the students to gain hands on experience working with skilled trades such as bricklayers, carpenters, plumbers and plasterers. Not only this, our site team, including; Shaun Stenson, Contracts Manager and Garry Whittall, Site Manager are providing the students with an insight into Construction Site Management, highlighting the importance of organisation and onsite progress in accordance with the contract programme.
Ann Isherwood, Work Experience and Job Coach at Heart of Worcestershire College, also added:
“As the work experience (WEX) & job coach at Heart of Worcestershire College I am overwhelmed with the support and opportunities that the students have been shown by Harper Construction and the Contract Manager Shaun Stenson. Not only has Shaun given WEX opportunities but has also supported the harder to reach students with coaching and mentoring.
In years to come our students will look back at the properties on Edgeworth Close Church Hill and take pride in the fact that they helped build homes for the residents of Redditch. The first Council Houses built in over 20 years. Our students are tomorrow’s workforce, Employees, Employers and Leaders – J. Harper & Sons (Leominster) Ltd and Shaun Stenson have given these young people the opportunities and support that they need to progress in their careers.”
It’s been great introducing the students to fresh opportunities that the construction industry sector holds and helping lay the foundations of their future careers along the way.