Launching our new Schools Partnership strategy with cross industry partners
With many major infrastructure projects and house-building programmes underway across the UK, most partners in the construction industry are well aware of the skills shortage challenge. However, low awareness and out-dated perception of our industry among young people, teachers and parents means encouraging young people into the built environment sector is not happening as effectively as industry might hope. This also means many young people are missing out on the tremendous careers, progression opportunities and rewards the sector can offer.
On Tuesday 3rd October, Construction Youth Trust made a big step towards addressing this challenge by launching our new Schools Partnership strategy with leaders from across industry. Our goal is to bring together industry partners and roll out a coordinated schools campaign to excite and inspire young people about future careers in the Built Environment industries, with a targeted focus on young people from disadvantaged backgrounds and under-represented groups such as women and BAME young people.
Cross-industry leaders gathered for a drinks reception hosted by KPMG in the presence of the Trust’s Patron HRH The Duke of Gloucester. Guests were inspired by speakers including Mark Thurston, CEO of HS2, who spoke about the challenge facing the sector “As industry leaders and representatives it falls to us to work together now, to inspire and nurture talent, to grow the UK’s railway and construction skills base. We need youth, passion, diversity.”
Andy Wates Chairman of Construction Youth Trust, and Carol Lynch, CEO, set out the aims and goals of the Schools Partnership campaign: “At Construction Youth Trust, we see a massive opportunity to promote the fantastic careers the modern industry can offer young people and make our sector an aspirational career of first-choice for young people. We need to reach out to a diverse pipeline of emerging talent and support young people to overcome barriers they face.”
The event was a terrific opportunity for the Trust to share the new strategy with industry leaders. Our immediate aim is to build, on behalf of industry as a whole, long-term partnerships with over 100 schools, prioritising local communities where a pipeline of skills will be required for next 10/20 years.
Industry representatives spoke with enthusiasm about developing greater collaboration to address the skills crisis through a cross-industry Schools campaign and we are excited to announce that, only one month after the event, many partners have already been in touch to explore ways they can be involved.