Get Into Construction – the Last Post
Looking at my calendar now, it’s hard to get my head around the fact that this time last month we had not even selected the crew for our Get Into Construction course. At that stage I was so busy running around i-dotting and t-crossing and finalising practicalities that I had not had a moment to really think about the more human side of the project. It took me by surprise how gobsmackingly proud I was of all the lads at the end, and I do mean GOBSMACKINGLY proud. Sixteen lads, thrown together and expected to learn a lot in a short amount of time, in a small classroom during the hottest two weeks of the year, and then tasked with a week’s full-on work experience including 8am starts and physical labour – this is a lot to ask of anyone and it’s a mark of the high calibre and determination of the group that fourteen people completed the course and were interviewed for apprenticeships. I hear a lot of negativity about young people through the mainstream media, so I really want to shout about the fact that actually, none of these lads rang true to the stereotypes we are led to believe in – quite the opposite in fact.
I could write a lot more about what I’ve learnt from my three weeks working with this group of young people, and probably will at some point, but in the meantime the question on everyone’s lips is – how did they do at interview – and did we manage to fill the five apprenticeships we had on offer?
And the answers are: Brilliantly, and YES! And not only did we manage to fill the apprenticeship positions, plus two more apprenticeships-in-waiting, but Jehu were so impressed by what the lads had achieved that they have created further pre-apprenticeship paid work placements under the Jobs Growth Wales scheme. Cadwyn have also been impressed by the calibre of applicants and have created additional work experience positions, while the Prince’s Trust have an eye on a couple of lads as potential JGW candidates for themselves! So the final scores on the doors are:
- Five apprenticeship positions, filled and starting in September.
- Two ‘apprentices-in-waiting’ signed up for college in September, with the aim of converting to carpentry apprenticeships as soon as there is a Jehu site with carpentry available.
- One bricklayer and one labourer to be interviewed for Jobs Growth Wales positions on Jehu/Cadwyn sites
- Two lads will be doing voluntary work placements with Cadwyn with the aim of applying for apprenticeships in our maintenance department and/or JGW positions with The Prince’s Trust
- One lad will be offered further painting work experience on the Beechley Drive hoardings, and will be working with Cadwyn’s Realise Your Potential scheme
- The other four lads, including the two who could not complete the course, are continuing to work with Cadwyn and the Prince’s Trust to identify further opportunities.
So you can see why I am so proud of them! They have achieved an amazing amount in a very short time, and no doubt will continue to make a success of their chosen paths. We”ll be introducing some of the Beechley apprentices here on the blog before too long, so check back soon to see how they are settling in! In the meantime, you can meet a couple of them on this video – (you can skip me wittering on if you start at about 1.40).