How employers are benefitting from sector-based work academies

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Sector-based work academies help prepare those receiving unemployment benefits to apply for jobs in a different area of work. Placements are designed to help meet your immediate and future recruitment needs as well as to recruit a workforce with the right skills to sustain and grow your business.

Fareham College

Fareham College has teamed up with Job Centre Plus (JCP) to establish a bespoke sector-based work academy to offer people the opportunity to gain the skills and knowledge required for pursuing a career in the construction industries.

The college’s Civil Engineering Training Centre (CETC) works with JCP to offer individuals seeking employment opportunities relevant skills and experience to enter the construction industry. Potential applicants, including those made redundant and receiving unemployment benefit or out of work for some time, enrol on a four-week training programme at CETC to give them real-world experience in civil engineering.

Every learner is guaranteed a job interview at the end of the programme, they obtain their CSCS Green Card as well as a Level 1 Award in Health and Safety in a Construction Environment and a Level 1 Award in Bricklaying. If required they can gain a functional skills qualification in Maths and English, enabling them to graduate the programme site-ready. Each cohort of learners can then progress straight into work or onto an apprenticeship.

Jordan Pakiry, a learner on the programme, said:

I was made redundant at the end of July. I came to CETC with no experience in bricklaying or the construction industry, but I have had a very positive experience and have learnt the basics in building straight block walls, corner returns and bonding bricks together.

These skills combined with my Level 1 Award in Health and Safety in a Construction Environment plus functional skills in Maths have put me in a great position to look for a job at the end of the programme.

Fellow learner Andrew Stubbs also commented:

I was unemployed for six months, having had a long and successful career in transport services. I want to pursue a work placement with Highways England and return to CETC next year to complete a Level 2 Highway Maintenance Apprenticeship.

The tutors at CETC are amazing. They have up-to-date industry experience and knowledge and the right connections. I have already recommended the programme to family and friends who are looking to change or start a career in civil engineering and groundworks.

Lesley Roberts of Fareham College said:

The programme has already enjoyed success with learners from the first two cohorts progressing into employment and Apprenticeships. We are planning a third cohort to start in January 2021. We hope to see many of our learners go on to have successful careers in the construction industry.

The college now has a full cohort of 20 learners who are looking forward to starting on programme in January 2021.

New careers

Thanks to Jobcentre staff in Manchester and the SWAP programme, Ashley Garrod is on the road to a new career.

After four years in the music industry, performing up and down the country as well as making his own music, Ashley found himself out of work in March 2020. But, through the SWAP programme, designed to connect employers with individuals who want a chance to learn more about a particular sector, Ashley now has qualifications in social care and a new career as a carer.

The hands on experience gained through SWAP helped Ashley decide if the care sector was right for him, and helped him make an informed choice about his future career path.

Ashley video

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