Trafford College, Trafford Council and the Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce teamed up with international consultancy and construction company Mace to support National Apprenticeship Week and put on a construction master class for local students at the Skills Centre in Trafford Park.
The master class brought together Trafford College and Skills Centre students who are seeking apprenticeships and local contractors who are working on the Coronation Street site, managed by Mace.
47 students studying plumbing, electrical engineering, joinery, scaffolding and brickwork received a master class in their chosen discipline before showcasing their new skills and competing against each other in a construction competition.
ITV showed their commitment to supporting local employment and apprentices by having Coronation Street cast members Ryan Thomas, who plays Jason, and Catherine Tyldesley, who plays Eva, on hand to present prizes to those who showed the most aptitude in each construction area, with a final prize given to the overall winner.
After the prize giving the students had a chance to network with the contractors who are being encouraged to offer apprenticeship opportunities as part of Mace’s apprenticeship scheme.
Winner in the Electronics category was 18 year-old Electrical Installation student, Alex Barnes, from Flixton. Currently in his second year at Trafford College, Alex won a specialist tool kit, after completing two practical assessments on the day.
Alex commented: “I’ve really enjoyed today. I’m happy that I was chosen as the winner because although I didn’t finish first, I paced myself and tried my best and my hard work was rewarded. I’m looking forward to continuing my studies at Trafford College and I hope to progress onto to becoming a successful Electrician Apprentice”.
The event proved a huge success with some contractors already offering apprenticeship opportunities. Paul McCrory, from McCroy Brickwork said: “I was so impressed by both the enthusiasm of the students and the standard of their work. With the Coronation Street build and some other high profile contracts coming up I’d be happy to give a number of the students who I worked with today an apprenticeship and am currently looking at opportunities. We’re a local firm and it’s great to be able to work with such enthusiastic and talented local young people.”