The Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) has awarded almost half a million pounds of funding for a BIM4Education initiative that aims to get teachers and students excited about BIM and construction.
Developed by a consortium led by social business, Neighbourhood Services Company (Liverpool), the 18-month project has a total value of £640,985, of which CITB will commit £454,984 via its Flexible Fund.
According to BIM4Education, the initiative will encourage a fresh approach to tackling the skills problem to change the image of the industry among young people, their teachers and parents.
The brainchild of Alison Watson, managing director of Class of Your Own, the initiative will focus on engaging teachers. Watson explains: “Teachers are hugely significant in the race for talent. The need to engage and excite young people about the rewards offered by a career in construction can only happen if the teacher – often the main influencer – is well informed, knowledgeable and well trained.
“Long-term investment in education is paramount, and the BIM4Education initiative offers further genuine support for teachers through some of the most respected organisations in industry and academia.”
The project is spilt into three major elements. First, to aid the development of a new generation of built environment specialist teachers in secondary education and post-16 training. For this, learning resources and support will be centred around BIM processes provided by the Universities of Heriot Watt, Liverpool John Moores, Salford, Westminster and the UK BIM Alliance.
Second, establishing two regional centres of excellence to showcase BIM processes at St Ambrose Barlow RC High School in Salford and the Alt Valley Community Trust in Liverpool.
And finally, creating a monthly built environment roadshow that will travel to schools across the UK in which construction ambassadors, education professionals, secondary school students and their parents will participate in a raft of activities all designed to increase the appeal of working in construction.
Geeta Nathan, head of economic analysis at CITB, commented: “CITB is committed to getting young people, teachers and parents to think positively about careers in construction. This project is a great example of innovative thinking to get kids excited about the incredible career opportunities in construction.
“By investing in BIM4Education we are taking a grass-roots approach to meeting the future demands of the industry by building up a strong, talented pipeline of Construction workers.”
Main image: Alexander Raths/Dreamstime.com
Teachers are hugely significant in the race for talent. The need to engage and excite young people about the rewards offered by a career in construction can only happen if the teacher – often the main influencer – is well informed, knowledgeable and well trained.– Alison Watson, Class of Your Own