GETTING HANDS ON AT WARWICKSHIRE COLLEGE
Currently undertaking a multi-million pound refurbishment scheme at Warwickshire College, Speller Metcalfe and course leaders have been taking construction trainees on regular site tours of a live site to gain some real-life experience and help them progress into apprenticeships.
Now in its second year, the returning trainees are able to assess the progression of work on site and learn about key trade skills including plumbing, electrics and carpentry.
Nigel O’Connor, Course Leader for Plumbing at Warwickshire College says that trainees and apprenticeships provide opportunities for students to get out of the classroom and apply their knowledge to site – and that there are benefits for both parties: “We train our students for a year, which then gives us the information we need to pass onto employers about their strengths and career focus.
“The employers we work with then have the opportunity to take on 2-3 apprentices on a trial basis, and if the relationship proves successful they will often take on an apprentice full time.”
As well as site visits, Speller Metcalfe has had five apprentices undertaking placements throughout the refurbishment scheme. Works to the College include a major refurbishment to the main Leamington Centre College building to provide new classrooms, science labs and facilities for courses such as Hair & Beauty, as well as a new airport style entrance to create more fluid movement at peak times and improve links between buildings.