Creating Purposeful Partnerships with HS2!

Our fifth Women into Construction Young Adults programme, in partnership with HS2, culminated in a fantastic Celebration Event recently. Held at the HS2 Snow Hill offices in Birmingham over 35 HS2 employees joined WiC and the programme participants to reflect and applaud the achievements of the women. We were incredibly lucky to also be joined by Labour MP for Birmingham Yardley and Shadow Minister for Domestic Violence and Safeguarding, Jess Phillips MP as the inspiring keynote speaker.

The programme, designed and developed, to support and upskill women aged 18 – 30 living in the West Midlands, launched with an Information Event on 20th September. 21 women attended and heard more about HS2 and the work placements they had available. In addition, we were joined by two fantastic role models, Susan Bridges and Amanjeet Sangha, who work in HS2 and were participants themselves on the first Young Adults Programme!

Following our selection process, 15 women were accepted onto the programme and were all excited to start the four week programme. The hybrid timetable was split into 2 elements; construction-related training and employability skills followed by a two week work placement. The Digital College delivered online L1 Health & Safety training plus CSCS card provision whilst WiC delivered in person workshops. The workshops were designed to provide the women with an introduction to construction and the array of different roles within it, confidence and resilience building, CV writing, interview skills and a session on how to use social media, especially LinkedIn, to help create a professional profile.

The women were then matched to a range of different placements within HS2. Depending on their backgrounds and interests the women were placed into departments such as architecture, engineering, creative services, people strategy and integrated projects at Curzon Street, Birmingham Interchange and Washwood Heath. The Cohort also attended a site visit at Curzon Street station which was kindly facilitated by Balfour Beatty Vinci and gave the women an insight into a live site as well as having access to automated visuals of what the station will look like on completion. Balfour Beatty Vinci also took the women through the process of applying for jobs through them and the types of roles that were on offer.

A huge WiC thank you to HS2 Ltd, in particular Beatriz Ramos Albert and Julie Venn-Morton and The Digital College for their support in delivering this impactful programme and of course the women who were just fantastic!!

WiC will continue to support the women with applying for job opportunities as they embark on their Journey into Construction.