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'Budding Brunels' Receive Rail Tour

'Budding Brunels' Receive Rail Tour

3 September 2015

Costain rail sector personnel were on hand to provide information to school pupils thinking of careers in the construction and engineering industry as part of Construction Youth Trust’s ‘Budding Brunels Rail’ programme.

The three-day schools engagement programme, named after the iconic 19th century engineer and run in partnership with Network Rail, encourages awareness of the rail industry whilst providing practical support for young people approaching the point in their school careers where they start thinking of full-time employment, apprenticeships, further education and higher education.

This particular course, inspired by the North Eastern section of the Crossrail route that runs from Stratford in east London to Essex, was held over three days at Chadwell Heath Depot, Anglia Ruskin University and the Tunnelling and Underground Construction Academy. Attended by 18 Year 10 pupils from Sweyne Park School in Rayleigh, Essex, the students received advice and guidance from Network Rail and Costain professionals, engaged in fun, industry-related activities and took part in several employability skill exercises.

As part of the course, the Sweyne Park students were also given a supervised tour of the Network Rail sites at Shenfield and Gidea Park stations, where the lines are being upgraded for the Crossrail project.

“Careers guidance workshops such as Budding Brunels Rail present a wonderful opportunity for schools and students to engage with industry representatives,” said Construction Youth Trust Schools and Further Education Co-ordinator, Deavon Sinclair.

“The experience brought by professionals from wide-ranging areas gives students valuable first-hand knowledge of the rail industry and the different ways they can follow similar careers.”

These sessions have proved particularly useful in casting the net for potential entrants into the industry further than before, as Deavon added: “Feedback from similar workshops has shown these experiences inspire girls to apply for courses and jobs they’d previously ruled out as being ‘for the boys’.

“Costain have been brilliant in their support of this course, with eight volunteers taking part over the three days and donating approximately 40 hours of their time,” said Tom Glover, Construction Youth Trust’s Schools and Further Education Interim Manager.

The final day concluded with interview practice for the students before they were formally interviewed by volunteers from Network Rail and Costain. Construction Youth Trust is in the process of contacting all students to provide interview feedback and to inform six students that they have been selected for a five-day work placement with Network Rail and Costain.


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