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Jake cements the foundations of his construction career

Jake Willetts from Longbridge has recently turned 18 and has completed his Level 2 Brickwork course with South & City College Birmingham. After just a week of work experience working for D J Brunell Brickwork Ltd, a sub-contractor to Lovell’s Monmouth Road housing development, Jake has managed to get several months of work as a bricklayer.

Jake did not enjoy school, however, has flourished at college. “College is the opposite of school.” Jake explained, adding, “I liked college a lot and had fun too. I would definitely recommend the course and the college, the tutors are great and I learned more with a hands-on course.”

Jake is currently considering his options for the next academic year and whether to add plastering to his skillset. Being a multi-trader makes you far more employable, however, he is really enjoying being employed and the friendships he has made with the other construction workers.

Linda Watson, Placement Officer for the college said, “The development in Jake over the past 2 months since he gained employment from his work placement at Lovell is remarkable. He has blossomed into a confident and competent individual who now has a clear idea of how his future looks. It is delightful to witness his progress. Well done Jake!”

Lovell are working with Birmingham Municipal Housing Trust (BMHT), to build affordable housing and open market properties. The new development named Senneley’s View, will consist of 68 new houses built, which are due for completion in 2023.

Earl Patrick, Community Engagement Manager for Lovell said, “It is important to us as a company to offer work experience and apprenticeships to young people. We are aware that there is a skills gap to fill and we want to do all we can to encourage the younger generation to learn a trade.”

South & City College have been providing work experience students to Lovell since 2014. A total of 60 students in carpentry, plumbing and brickwork have passed through various Lovell construction sites.

Earl added, “It has been a massive help to have the relationship with the college through Linda in order to fill our places and fulfil our social value targets.”

When asked where he saw himself in five years’ time, Jake said, “I’d like to be working onsite locally with a great bunch of lads on good pay. I’d have another trade under my belt and I’ll be driving a nice car.”

The college wishes Jake all the best with his construction journey and hope to catch up with him again to find out how he’s progressing.

If you have been inspired to learn a construction trade, visit our dedicated construction page to learn more about the courses on offer and career opportunities within the construction industry.