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Business & Economy

Tolent to host online schools event to inspire future construction careers

Gateshead-based contractor Tolent is hosting a free online event to inspire students to think about a career in construction and is encouraging schools and colleges to sign up.

The event will give students a behind-the-scenes tour of the £85.4m Milburngate development in Durham, the contractor’s largest live site.

Those who sign up will be able to take the virtual tour and will hear from various team members who will provide insights on all areas of the project, from management, design, cost, logistics and health and safety.

Members of the team will then sit down for a live question and answer event in June, where students will be able to put their questions to the panel.

Andy McLeod, CEO of Tolent, said: “I’m incredibly proud of everyone involved in this project who continue to uphold our reputation as a considerate contractor, going above and beyond what is asked of them and making a real difference to our communities.

“With more than 230,000 construction jobs expected to be created in the next five years, it’s important we engage with school learners now to promote the choice and quality of roles within the industry. We all know how important careers advice and support is for schools, and without being able to get access to the schools this year, I’m delighted we’re still able to support where it’s needed.”

Due to the ongoing restrictions posed by the pandemic, Tolent’s usual activities of hosting site visits, supporting school career events and general engagement with local education establishments have been unable to go ahead.

With a commitment to helping young people into construction careers, the team set to work last year to create a suite of materials to ensure the focus on jobs in the industry was not lost.

Other activities on offer include a ‘Guess the construction career’ challenge. Put together in a short video, 14 different staff members provide a brief overview of their day-to-day duties, showcasing the range of traditional and non-traditional roles available within the industry and ask students to guess which job belonged to each member of staff.

Targeted at primary school children, a new video has also been created to communicate the importance of health and safety on a construction site, usually delivered to schools nearby to its construction sites.

Despite the challenges of 2020, its teams still managed to deliver more than £1.1m of social value activity which included: 17 work experience placements for those aged 16+, 45 days of work experience, safeguarded 31 apprenticeships and created six new apprentice roles and colleagues completed more than 23 hours of wellbeing training, including mental health first aid courses, mindfulness, meditation and managing stress courses.

The event will take place on 9 June at 10:30am. To sign up for the event, contact [email protected]