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Warrington student Alex Butress gets some on-site experience at the Future Tech Studio project

On-site scheme for future pros

Warrington Collegiate construction students are getting hands-on experience on the site of a new academy

Posted by Dave Higgitt | March 11, 2015 | People, policy, politics, money

Building contractor GB Building Solutions (GBBS) is working with Warrington Collegiate to give students on construction-related courses opportunities to gain site experience.

GBBS is nearing completion of the town’s new Future Tech Studio and has hosted numerous site visits and weekly placements for students of traditional trades during the build. But both GBBS and Warrington Collegiate were keen to see opportunities for site experience continue after the new building is finished and so students will now travel to nearby Woolston, where GBBS is developing a new £10m free school, King’s Leadership Academy.

GBBS regional managing director for the north west Dan Spencer said: “There’s real value in getting students out of the classroom and onto sites, where they can gain practical experience of what will one day become their working environment. GB is committed to supporting education providers who are training the industry’s future talent, and we do as much as we can to provide learning experiences both on and off site in collaboration with the tutors.

“We ran a very successful programme of weekly placements at the Future Tech Studio site, and hope the students will continue to benefit from working with our team at the scheme in Woolston.”

In addition to weekly placements for traditional trades, GB invited Warrington Collegiate students to apply for a professional placement shadowing the site manager until the end of the project.

GBBS community manager Patricia Adams said: “We were very impressed with all the candidates, who were interviewed by the site team. We had originally planned to offer just one placement, but the candidates were so keen that we will have two students joining us for a day a week, learning about the roles and responsibilities of a site manager and project manager.”

Warrington Collegiate work placement co-ordinator Dominica Randolfi said: "Quality work placements are what we aim to provide to our learners here at the Collegiate. Without companies such as GBBS, our learners would not gain the necessary skills and work ethics to prepare them for the world of employment. 

“We have worked together with GBBS for a number of years now placing a range of learners studying electrical installation, plumbing, gas, carpentry and joinery, painting and decorating and construction extended diplomas. The Collegiate is most grateful for the opportunities that GBBS provide for our learners."

Kings’ Leadership Academy is a £10m development, designed by Manchester-based Pozzoni Architects. The building will have a double-height colonnade, feature entrance and multi-use sports hall and auditorium and is designed around a central atrium, allowing natural light into each of the classrooms. The school is due for completion during the summer.

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