Bond Street Helps Youngsters
21 October 2015
With the new academic year now well under way, the team at the Bond Street Station Upgrade project (BSSU) is gearing up to again help youngsters get a taste of the world of employment.
Over the past academic year, the team has linked up with Career Ready, a charity that connects employers with schools and colleges.
Together, they have been focusing on Quintin Kynaston Community Academy in St John’s Wood, northwest London, with a variety of activities designed to give pupils an insight into the world of civil engineering.
In September 2014, the team launched a mentoring programme for pupils from Quintin Kynaston to help them with some of the building blocks of finding a first job, such as writing a CV and preparing for job interviews.
As part of the Capital Experience event last December, organised by Career Ready, 30 students and their teachers were invited to visit the Bond Street site for a presentation on the project, a networking session with BSSU team members and some career advice.
As Year 12 pupils taking Business as one of their AS subjects began to prepare for their final exams, BSSU Community Relations Manager Angelika Chraska-Pongo gave a presentation at the school on ‘Business aims, objectives and organisation’ and answered questions from 50 pupils on how businesses motivate their employees and recruit new staff.
The visit spurred Nathan de Garis, the school’s head of corporate liaison and work-related learning, to comment that it would have “a very real impact upon their results in the AS Business exam”.
Five students were also invited to the site for mock interviews, to give them experience of the real thing when they start to look for jobs. Feedback on the pupils from the team carrying out the interviews was so positive that all five 17-year-olds were offered a four-week paid summer internship. As a result, four made a decision to choose civil engineering as a future career.
Three stayed with the Bond Street team and were given experience of a wide range of activities, including planning temporary works, design, civil and tunnel engineering, as well as related fields such as community relations.
BSSU team members have also benefited from the year-long involvement with the school, enjoying sharing their own experiences with the youngsters and discovering how much they can offer to young people about to start their own careers.
The team is now looking forward to continuing the project in the new academic year and providing valued support to the community.
Caption: Costain Foreman, Bryan Williams, gives a careers presentation to Quintin Kynaston pupils at the school's Design and Technology Career Fair.
Costain Communications Department