An early morning introduction ride for our latest member of the club, Eddy Byfield. Eddy is our summer placement student from Portsmouth University and only started on Monday but was keen to join in. A very small party this morning with Patrick Fisher and Nick Groves taking Eddy around the short induction route.
The government subsidised Degree Apprenticeship schemes need to be embraced more by the construction industry in the region according to Steve Hollick, the Technical Director of Romsey based consulting civil and structural engineering firm WFBA. Degree Apprentice schemes are available for a multitude of professions within the industry and only require a 5% contribution from most SME companies, which is very cost efficient for both employer and employee (who pay no fees!). WFBA are taking the opportunity to support 2 part time degree students from their team this year to attend one day a week courses at University of Portsmouth to become chartered engineers. Steve Hollick and his fellow directors are also encouraging their industry contacts to discuss the options offered with Omar Lakhssassi, Business Development Executive for Degree Apprenticeships at the University.
“From our point of view, the incentive to upskill our engineering team is very strong and we are impressed with the syllabus, course content and the high standard of the lecturers we have met at the University,” said Steve Hollick. “We co-host the Southern Construction and Property Breakfast Club and so actively encourage Omar to meet many of the leading construction industry decision makers to help get the importance of the degree apprenticeships that benefit the industry.”
Omar Lakhssassi is hoping to raise awareness that the government currently subsidise 95% of Apprentice course fees so companies could sponsor a full degree for as little as £2500.
“We are committed to giving support to the industry through courses covering Project Management, Quantity Surveying, Architecture and Civil Engineering. There should be no excuse not to enhance the skills of the region’s construction industry professionals,” said Omar Lakhssassi.
WFBA has supported the University’s Architectural Students on a monthly basis with Alastair Craig, who is a Technical Director and also Chairman of the Southern Regional Group of The Institution of Structural Engineers by providing practical advice on design projects. WFBA also encourages any students interested in a career in Civil Engineering to visit their offices to meet their team of 25 professionals to get a greater understanding of the work involved on projects on a day to day basis.
Any company requiring more information on Degree Apprenticeships can contact email@example.com
The high-rise buildings of Portsmouth are soon to be joined by the 12 storey new Travelodge Hotel as preparations are made for it’s its accent into the skyline. Kirsten Glen from Plymouth University, who has just commenced a 1 year placement with the Romsey based consulting civil and structural engineering company WFBA, had the opportunity to visit the site next to Catherine House, the student housing flats on Stanhope Road, where Senior Technician Mark Montaniel and Civil Technician Sam Wicks have been ensuring that the drainage and below ground civil engineering work is fully coordinated during the early stages of the build to ensure a smooth transition to superstructure construction.
“The mix of disciplines involved to ensure the contractors can proceed with confidence is vital at this important stage,” said Kirsten Glen, who is studying Civil and Coastal Engineering.
Working to designs by Maidenhead Architects SKDdesign, WFBA Director Nick Groves says that once opened in the spring of 2019, it will be the 20th hotel project for which the company has provided consultancy services.
“Since April 2016 we have been looking at design options and assisting with obtaining planning permission, going thorough design development and producing final information for tender and construction. Our team has used 3D modelling techniques to collaborate with the design and construction team in line with the principles of BIM. The experience with Travelodge enables us to support the proven formula that works for the successful group, and its team of architects and construction management team,” said Nick Groves.