This week, construction trades students from our Bexley and Bromley Campuses were given the opportunity to prepare for and impress potential employers at an interview practice event at our Construction Skills Campus at Holly Hill.

Ambitious students took part in the interviews with representatives from Merlin Electrical, Wates, Birkbeck University, Royal Borough of Greenwich, DS Property Maintenance, and Berkley Group. They came along to not only to help our students prepare for interviews, but also to alert them to possible vacancies, work experience programmes and apprenticeship opportunities offered by their companies over the next few months.

Maintenance supervisor David Martin and Manager Daniel Xuereb are from Birkbeck University’s estates and facilities unit. They are currently recruiting for mechanical and electrical engineering and plumbing apprentices and came in search of promising candidates.

Both David and Daniel are former students and have made a success of the training they received just over a decade ago. David said:“We came today on the lookout for talent and flair. I know, through personal experience, that this College is the place to come if you want to find ‘career ready’ students with a good grounding in their chosen trades.”

Daniel added:“We are hoping to offer some students a one or two-week work experience at the university to assess their suitability for the roles we have available. Today, we hope to enlist hopefuls who can demonstrate an aptitude for their chosen trade and show a willingness to learn. Students who are coming to the end of their level 2 courses are more likely to be suitable for the roles. They will then be given more advanced ‘on-the-job’ training and a chance to achieve higher level qualifications.”

Alec Game is a Director at Merlin Electrical Services. He is also a former student and has made a huge success of his career. He too came in search of talent to join his company as electrical installation apprentices. He said:“I’ve come along today to talk to students who are interested in becoming electrical installers. I’m looking for reliable and friendly people who have a good understanding of customer service.

"We work a lot with housing associations as well as commercial companies and it’s important we send them engineers with a sound and friendly attitude.”

Reece is coming to the end of his Plumbing C&G Level 2 Diploma and is seeking an apprenticeship for the next step of his career. He said:“I’ve had interviews with the reps from Birkbeck University and Berkely Group today and I have been greatly encouraged by both. They have given me lots of information about the jobs on offer and how and when I should apply. This event is very useful to all students and I really get the impression that there is lots of work out there for us.”

Josh has just completed his Electrical Installation C&G Level 2 course. He said:“Alec has a wealth of knowledge and is very inspirational. He has worked in the electrical and electronic engineering business for many years and knows pretty much everything there is to know about the industry. He told me lots about his company and the kind of work they do.

“Having completed my course, I’m confident of finding a job soon. I’ve been well trained and I know that all the skills I’ve picked up here at the College are attractive to employers. My tutors are what I would call ‘no nonsense’ and put you through your paces throughout your course.”

Plumbing student Stephanie sat down for an interview with employers from Royal Borough of Greenwich. They are currently recruiting for a whole host of different careers that include town planning and civil engineering, construction multi-trades and building services, gas fitting, customer services and lots more. She said:“I would like to work as a domestic plumber but need to get more experience under my belt before I can start making a good living. There are a lot of regeneration programmes taking place locally with huge developments in the Greenwich peninsular, and lots of new-build housing and commercial property around the Cross Rail stations. There is also a shortage of trained personnel to match the number of jobs required. It’s a very good time to join the trades and I’m very optimistic about my prospects.”

Phil Clark is the Director of STEM at the Holly Hill Campus. He said:“This is the third year in succession that we have put on this event for our level 2 students. It has proved to be an amazing success; last year it resulted in thirteen apprenticeship and fifteen work experience offers being made. Our mission to prepare our students for the industry locally and pan-London is definitely paying off.”

If you think you have what it takes to become a construction or building trade professional and would like to build a successful career in the construction and built environment industries, we’d like to hear from you. We have a great range of courses to get you started. Come along to one of our open events during June and July. Click here to learn more.

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