Dundee MSP applauds BT work placement graduates
Young people in Dundee have been kick-starting their careers on a free work placement with BT – and local MSP Joe FitzPatrick was there to help them graduate.
The three-week course, combining hands-on work experience, tech know how, coaching and training, was open to anyone aged 16 to 24 not currently in education, employment or training.
The latest Dundee placement was attended by seven young people - Sean Gallacher, Jack McLeod, Lynn Rollo, Jake Purdy, Barry Harper and James Shepherd, all from Dundee, and Robert Hanlon from Newport.
The Dundee West MSP visited BT’s HQ in the city’s Ward Road to help celebrate their success by presenting them with their end-of-course certificates.
BT work placements offer the opportunity for people to build confidence and learn practical work skills such as CV writing and interview techniques, as well as practical work skills in areas like computing and customer service.
Attendees are given a certificate and reference showing their attendance and achievements to demonstrate their commitment to prospective employers.
Seven days of work experience included in the Dundee course were spent shadowing engineers from Openreach, Scotland’s digital network business, as they worked on the city’s fibre and copper communication links.
Joe FitzPatrick MSP said: “I was delighted to be asked to present certificates to graduates of BT’s Work Ready Programme in Dundee. This is an excellent project which allows young people to develop skills in a wide range of disciplines with a view to expanding their employment prospects.
“BT’s three-week programme invests in our future workforce. I would encourage anyone aged between 16-24 who is not in education, employment or training to contact BT for further information.”
The Dundee young people had different reasons for taking part in the course, including wanting to get some general work experience before applying for jobs; gaining confidence; doing something positive to increase chances in the jobs market; and learning about engineering with a field engineer.
Jake, 19, came to Dundee from his home town of Elgin to study computer games development at Abertay University. He’s currently on a gap year and in the process of changing courses to a different area of computing science.
He said: “I’m taking some time out to decide what I want to do and while looking for work I heard about the BT placement. I thought it was something I would enjoy as I’m into computing and was interested in how it works on a national scale.
“It’s been even better than I thought it would be. Before, I was not too big on having to deal with people and thought I’d be more suited to a backroom role.
“I’d recommend it to others – and have even been encouraging a mate to apply for an apprenticeship. I’ll now be looking for a part-time job during my gap year but once I get my degree I’ll be applying for everything!”
Mark Dames, BT’s head of policy and public affairs in Scotland, said: “As a major employer in Dundee, we have a vested interest in helping the city’s young people to be ready for the working life that lies ahead.
“We’ve been really pleased to welcome them and hope they graduate with the increased confidence, experience and skills they need to start the journey on a new career path, whatever direction they decide on next.”
BT plans to offer further placements in Dundee this summer and anyone interested in attending can register on the website.
BT work placements are part of the BT Work Ready programme* - a series of initiatives to help young people, particularly from disadvantaged backgrounds, gain employment skills. Since 2014 more than 3,500 young people from around the UK have taken part in the programme.
Notes to Editors
* The Work Ready programme is part of BT’s commitment as a founding partner in the Movement to Work coalition of employers. Movement to Work offers work placements to 16-24-year-olds who are not in education, employment or training, particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds who can struggle to identify and take advantage of employment opportunities. BT is a lead company for the charity, which is a collaboration of UK employers aiming to tackle youth unemployment by providing high-quality work experience placements.
BT’s purpose is to use the power of communications to make a better world. It is one of the world’s leading providers of communications services and solutions, serving customers in 180 countries. Its principal activities include the provision of networked IT services globally; local, national and international telecommunications services to its customers for use at home, at work and on the move; broadband, TV and internet products and services; and converged fixed-mobile products and services. BT consists of six customer-facing lines of business: Consumer, EE, Business and Public Sector, Global Services, Wholesale and Ventures, and Openreach.
For the year ended 31 March 2017, BT Group’s reported revenue was £24,062m with reported profit before taxation of £2,354m.
British Telecommunications plc (BT) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of BT Group plc and encompasses virtually all businesses and assets of the BT Group. BT Group plc is listed on stock exchanges in London and New York.
For more information, visit www.btplc.com