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CITB-ConstructionSkills Inspire Young Blood through Innovative Recruitment Programme

To whet the appetite of tomorrow’s workforce and provide students interested in a career in construction with an opportunity for some practical experience, CITB-ConstructionSkills hosted its Arkwright Week last week, bringing together industry and academia.

Held at Europe’s largest construction training provider, the National Construction College (NCC) in Bircham Newton, Norfolk, the Arkwright Week invited 16 of the most talented young people around the UK to experience an intense and unique programme designed to educate them about a career in construction, in fields such as design and engineering.

Participating students were given the opportunity to gain a good level of practical experience as well as useful skills when entering the workforce such as presentation and interview techniques. The students also participated in a construction site visit, providing them with a unique insight into the industry.

Arkwright Scholars

An Olympic challenge

The week’s activities at NCC, the training division of CITB-ConstructionSkills, involved a range of construction activities including model building, a series of workshops and presentations from experts in the construction industry on topics including sustainability, design and architecture.

The week culminated with students being tasked with designing – as they see it – a section of the 2012 Olympic Park and village accommodation and presenting their model and designs to a panel of industry experts, including key representatives from Sir Robert McAlpine, Mansell, Persimmons and RMJM Architects.

CITB-ConstructionSkills Recruitment Manager, Paul Sykes, said: “There has never been a more exciting time for young people to join the construction industry with many interesting and exciting large scale projects underway or on the horizon, such as the Channel Tunnel rail link, Thames Gateway as well as numerous new municipal projects being built or planned.

“Part of CITB-ConstructionSkills’ role as the Sector Skills Council for construction is to provide the industry with the right people, with the right skills, at the right time, projects like the CITB-ConstructionSkills’ Arkwright Programme help us to identify and potentially secure these people.”

Mansell PLC, Business Development Manager, Andrea Soame said: “The construction sector is like no other. Until you’ve been on site and seen for yourself the scale and scope of jobs and specialisms which exist, it’s impossible to understand the opportunities it offers. Industry needs to get smart about educating young people in this way.”

An inspiring career

Criterion for receiving a scholarship from The Arkwright Scholarships Trust includes undergoing a rigorous selection process involving a comprehensive application, examination and interview. The selection process requires students to have taken certain subjects at A-level, such as Maths and to have shown an interest in engineering or technology subjects.

CITB-ConstructionSkills sponsors five of this year’s 16 scholars all of whom have the opportunity to go on to benefit from the Inspire Scholarship Programme, which matches funding sponsorship from employers of university students for three years of their course. The Inspire Scholarship scheme offers students up to £9,000 of funding to help with their studies and also provides them with useful on-site experience with top employers while studying, with the possibility of a job after graduation. CITB-ConstructionSkills Arkwright Scholars, along with others studying for a construction related degree, are entitled to apply for an Inspire Scholarship.

Visit to find out more about a career in construction.

For further information about Arkwright Week, read the full press release.

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