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E W Edwardson Electrical Work placements and progression

E W Edwardson Electrical Work placements and progression

E W Edwardson Electrical have been supporting Angus pupils with work placements since 2019.  The organisation are very passionate about supporting young people and given them the opportunity to gain experience and develop their skills in a modern working environment to support their career decisions.

Through working with the Skills for Work Co-ordinator, Angus Council E W Edwardson  developed their own work placement guidance and procedures for arranging and supporting work placements across Tayside and Fife.  They now offer a number of fixed week work placements across the academic year to each local authority within Tayside and Fife. They are also very flexible should the timing not quite suit young people and look to be accommodating where they can.

It was through this relationship that the Skills for Work Co-ordinator negotiated placements with E W Edwardson for two young people on the Future Skills College course, one in 2020 and then again in 2021.  Both the young people from Angus went on to achieve apprenticeships with the company and are thriving there.

Lucy Telfer, S5 Carnoustie High School joined the Future Skills College Course (FSC) in the 2021/22 session   The FSC course allowed for students to be supported and remain on the school roll whilst attending D&A College to undertake an NPA at level 5 in either Joinery, Plumbing, Electrical or the FA level 6 in Early Years and Childcare and gain or progress their essential skills in Numeracy, Literacy and IT. The students attended college over 4 days and a work placement for 1 day of the a week.   Lucy was very determined from S4 and focused on that she wanted to follow the apprenticeship pathway into electrical engineering.  The employer arranged an informally interview with Lucy through the Skills for Work Co-ordinator prior to agreeing the placement.  This ensured a good fit for all involved and that Lucy, the employer and the Skills for Work Co-ordinator were all clear and understood the expectations. Through good communication with the Skills for Work Co-ordinator, the employer and CQL at D&A College the placement was set up for Lucy to commence as soon as college started.  The employer planned the placement ahead and offered a variety of tasks to ensure that Lucy was able to put the learning from college into practise during the placement. This meant that they had planned on agreed the targets for the workplace learning and how Lucy would be inducted into the organisation.

Lucy kept a very detailed work placement log and detailed the jobs and tasks within this.  These included visiting multiple Angus Council sites where E W Edwardson were the repair contractor.  The support from E W Edwardson of providing appropriate training and guidance, including a health and safety training enabled Lucy to both undertake essential tasks and explore areas of particular interest.  This exposure to the work placement and the working environment has had an influence Lucy’s including her understanding of the responsibilities and duties placed on employers and employees and her career journey.

Lucy was offered an apprenticeship with E W Edwardson in December 2021 and took this up in January 2022.  Although Lucy didn’t complete her NPA with D&A College she was able to gain the credits for all the units that she had completed.   The opportunities and experiences through this work placement have supported Lucy along her career journey to progress to her goal of achieving an apprenticeship with this local employer.

The fixed week set school work placement offers have proved popular within our schools in Angus and the offer has been taken up by a number of pupils across Angus.

Benefits of the placement: 

  • Provides a valuable insight into work practices and cultures with a view to supporting future career choices
  • Experience - not just of their chosen career area but everything else that goes along with a working life – travel, deadlines, working as a team, the impact of having a day off etc.
  • Opportunity to develop key knowledge, skills and behaviours required in learning, life and work.
  • Increased awareness about the variety of professions that exist across an organisation
  • Opportunity to undertake SQA Work placement Unit Level 4/5
  • Preparing young people for transition into successful employment
  • Young people get their face/name 'known' with an organisation

Benefits for the Employer:

  • Opportunity to engage with future workforce
  • Enhances reputation as a good employer
  • Provides leadership/mentoring development opportunities for staff
  • Work in partnership with the school
  • Gain access to fresh ideas/perspectives through the original thinking of young people
  • Extremely rewarding.

Pupils carry out a 1-week fixed work placement to gain an experience, develop skills and network within this preferred career industry of Electrical Engineering.   They are given the opportunity to assist a fully qualified electrician and tasks have included tidying workspaces, supervised cable running, installation works and servicing. The young people have to ensure that they followed the employers’ instructions and guidance during the placement. 

These relevant, challenging, enjoyable learning experiences in the contemporary workplace with E W Edwardson provide a rich experience for young people to experience and develop their skills in a work environment and from Lucy’s story have clearly help a young person to make an informed career choice.

EW Edwardson
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