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Candidates’ bright future is a matter of Trust

Youngsters get switched on to a possible electrical career, thanks to the third successful Get Into Electrical Installation programme run by SECTT and the Prince’s Trust

For the third year in a row, youngsters from across Scotland have been energised by the electrotechnical industry, thanks to the Get Into Electrical Installation programme.

Organised by the Scottish Electrical Charitable Training Trust (SECTT) and the Prince’s Trust, the six-week courses in Edinburgh, Dundee and Paisley saw candidates from a variety of backgrounds given an introduction to electrical skills.

The programme, funded by SELECT, also included a week’s work placement, where the youngsters gained more invaluable hands-on experience to improve their confidence.

At the end of each course, candidates were presented with certificates at a celebration event, during which they told an audience of family, friends and employers about their experiences.

Anne Galbraith, Chief Executive Officer, SECTT, said: “The Get Into Electrical Installation programme is an intense taster course that allows candidates to make an informed choice about becoming an electrician.

“It’s a very successful route into the Modern Apprenticeship programme and the first step towards gaining full-time employment.

“We were delighted to be involved again this year with the Prince’s Trust and to be able to offer three programmes through funding from SELECT.”

Lee Johnstone, Head of Corporate Partnerships, The Prince’s Trust, said: “Sadly there are thousands of young people around the country who still believe they’re not good enough. We help give them the confidence and skills to find a job and a future.”

Edinburgh College, Dalkeith Campus

Edinburgh College, Dalkeith Campus

The first programme started in Edinburgh, with eight youngsters completing the course. Of these, five have been offered employment and one a place on a pre-apprenticeship course. The other two are looking at alternatives.

Anne said: “Although a small group, they worked well together and helped each other at all times. The staff praised the quality of the work they produced in such a short time.”

Also impressed by the craftsmanship on display at the celebration event were special guests Colin Beattie MSP and Lewis Jackson from Response (Scotland), who gave an inspiring speech to the candidates.

Lewis took part in the first programme in 2015 and went on to gain an MA in Electrical Installation. He also won the Edinburgh College 2nd Stage Apprentice of the Year in June 2017.

West College Scotland, Paisley Campus

West College Scotland, Paisley Campus

Activity moved to the west of Scotland for the second programme, with 12 proud youngsters finishing the course, watched by CABLEtalk.

Two of the group have now been offered jobs, another an apprenticeship, and a fourth has accepted a full-time place at college to study mechanical engineering. The others will all be offered a place on the pre-apprenticeship course.

One of those who took part was Fahad Sceibi, 19, from Bridgton, Glasgow. He said: “I enjoyed the course, especially the practical part, rather than just sitting in a classroom.

“I had no electrical experience before this, but in just six weeks it taught me so many things, like health and safety, how to use extinguishers and how to read things properly. If someone had told me I’d be able to do it all, I wouldn’t have believed them.

“The main thing was that we helped each other and worked as a team. I originally wanted to be a mechanical engineer, but this has given me a new direction and another option if I want it.

Anne said: “What a group! They were all very different but worked so well as a team. They really benefitted from the expertise and support of course tutor Andy Fogarty from day one.”

Dundee College, Kingsway Campus

Dundee group with Newel McGuiness

Another dozen motivated youngsters completed the final course in Dundee, with plenty of encouraging feedback from their work placements.

Anne said: “They all worked so hard in the workshop and in studying for the SECTT pre-employment assessment, which they all passed.”

With a college class due to start in October, SECTT will now look at employment opportunities and possible places on the pre-apprenticeship course.

Anne said: “My thank-you list is huge and starts with SELECT for funding these programmes, the Prince’s Trust – particularly Lorna McIver and Devon Cook – and the SECTT team for making it happen.

“I’m also grateful to all the colleges and their staff, the employers who very kindly offered practical work placements, and the other support agencies who encouraged and helped all these amazing candidates. It is so rewarding to see the results.”

Newell McGuiness, Managing Director, SELECT, said: “This great scheme works on so many levels. It helps young people and it also helps the electrical industry find and nurture new talent.

“I hope, like me, it will help these young people enjoy a long-lasting career in the electrical industry.”

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