Celebrating Apprenticeship week
09 Feb 2022
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At National Highways we recognise the wealth of talent that can be mined through apprenticeships. Whether that’s working directly with us, or as part of the supply chain, the opportunities are endless.
Meet a few of our apprentices:
Mackenzie (Kenzi) is 20. She joined Costain as an apprentice in September 2020.
Kenzi was all set to start a Criminology degree at Northumbria University when she attended a ‘IOSH Managing Safely’ course with her local Health and Safety training provider and discovered that was where her real passion lay.
“I get to work and learn at the same time. My apprenticeship has let me investigate safety on site, learn about safety best practice and find ways of making sure people working on our sites are able to get home safe and well at the end of every day."
“And I’ve also had the chance to inspire others to join the industry too, through hosting virtual work experience days with schools as well as being a committee member for the National Association of Women in Construction (NAWIC).”
“It’s been a really steep learning curve but I love being involved in seeing our construction projects develop safely.”
To fully qualify Kenzi must take a written exam, complete a professional discussion, and give a presentation around a project of her choice, something she plans to do within the next few months.
“I can’t wait to be fully qualified and to progress in the industry. There are so many opportunities to learn and develop. I’d recommend apprenticeships to any young person who’d like an interesting and varied career."
Jack is 25. He joined National Highways as a project management apprentice in September 2021.
Jack spent some time travelling and working in Australia and had worked in retail and events in England before applying to be an apprentice.
Pippa is 23, one of the supply chain apprentices working on National Highways schemes in the North East. She joined Costain on a placement year as part of her Quantity Surveying (QS) degree at Northumbria University.
Pippa enjoyed her placement year and wanted to spend more time applying her learning and skills to actual construction schemes. She is now combining work and studying and will graduate in 2024.
“I’ve always enjoyed working with numbers and saw that a degree in Quantity Surveying could open up lots of options for me.
“I’ve had a long-held interest in construction too, so when Costain offered me an apprenticeship after my placement year I was delighted to take that opportunity.
“The whole commercial team have been massively helpful and supportive, and I now have much more insight into how the work of a QS fits into the creation of large infrastructure projects.”
Because Pippa is working as well as learning she is also working towards professional accreditation - something she would have had to start after graduation if she had not taken the apprenticeship.
“I am given so much trust and am allowed to manage procurement, oversee contracts, assess applications for work and deal with subcontractors.
“I do find dealing with compensation events - where things happen that weren’t planned - more difficult as I like things to be ordered and planned but the support I receive means I feel confident to tackle whatever is asked of me.”
Find out more about the opportunities available at National Highways.
Our commitment to encouraging people into careers in construction doesn’t end when Apprenticeship week does. Find out more about our work experience weeks coming up in July 2022.