BUILDING a bright future – Our class of August 2021

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To some of us, the end of August signified the end of summer where the six weeks holidays came to a close, the new school uniforms emerged and the ‘back to work’ realities of Sunday night dreads and having nothing decent in the fridge for your bait box made an exhausting comeback. And whilst the dark nights began to draw in, at Geon we’re happy to say the sun still hasn’t stopped shining, because for us, the end of August marks something truly wonderful – the Graduation of our first BUILD UP construction traineeship programme and the start of some incredibly bright futures for our cohort of learners.

Traineeships with a difference!

Our BUILD UP programmes are dedicated to developing individuals in an urgent bid to combat skills shortages in the North East of England across key industrial sectors. Too often, we see opportunities in these industries dictated by particular skill sets and trades but that’s what makes the beauty of the BUILD UP so much stronger. We knew from day 1 the power needed to remain firmly in the learner’s hands to choose their career path.

Each candidate who took part in our BUILD UP programme went through 6 weeks of training, broken down into 4 weeks of classroom-based study and 2 weeks of real hands-on work experience with a variety of our employer partners around the region such as Shaw Construction, HSS Scaffolding and RE:GEN Group.

By working closely with RE:GEN Group in particular, a series of bespoke modules were created to enable the learners to get a REAL insight into what a career in construction could look like and understand the ‘RE:GEN’ way of doing things as a best in class example. From learning the tricks of the trade on-site to gaining functional skills in Maths and English and qualifying for their very own CSCS cards, our learners have come away with far more than just a CV worthy qualification – they’ve come away with life changing experiences and their foot firmly in the door.

A new way to Graduate!

Rather than a basic hand shaking ceremony followed by a stereotypically poor selection of nibbles, it was time to switch graduation up and do something which would not only inspire our learners but give their employability one final boost before the course was out.

Hosted at RE:GEN House, our BUILD UP graduation day was jam packed with opportunities for our learners to leave a lasting impression on the employers they’d been working with. Each candidate began their day by structuring and rehearsing a 10-minute presentation to summarise their personal highlights of the course and pitch the roles they personally wanted to apply for.

These presentations are what our traineeships are all about. From the first day to the very last, our learners are the ones to choose the right path for them.

In true Dragon’s Den style, the presentation panel comprised of 6 executive team members. Unbeknown to our learners, these members were from a variety of employers from around the region, invited personally by RE:GEN’s CEO Lee Francis, and all with the appetite to bring in fresh talent to their own organisations. From presentations, our candidates moved swiftly into formal interviews in their chosen roles conducted by RE:GEN senior management.

Experience money can’t buy

During the entirety of the traineeship, our learners have gained unrivalled experience and exposure to key influential figures within in the construction world, something which money definitely cannot buy. As a result of being in front of such an impressive panel, we are delighted to confirm that 6 of our 9 traineeship graduates have received successful job offers and placements within RE:GEN Group and Sekura Windows! The roles include 2x Apprentice Site Managers, 1x Apprentice Quantity Surveyor, 2x Apprentice Joiners and a Building Surveyor

Our first BUILD UP construction programme has been a renowned success. We’d like to thank each and every one of our employer partners for helping us deliver such an inspirational course this summer! Our biggest thanks however, goes to our learners. These guys are some of the most infectiously brilliant candidates we’ve met!

You trusted us to put you where you wanted to be, and for 70% of the cohort, we did just that! Here’s to the next gen of the Construction world!!

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