Youth engagement is an important objective for ENGIE and promoting the construction industry and the wealth of careers within it is particularly important at a time when there is a general skills shortage and not enough young people entering the industry.
ENGIE has responded to the need for more widespread and engaging promotion of the industry by developing our own educational programmes
ENGIE Building Challenge
- A 1-hour workshop targeted at young people from Key stage 1 through to Key stage 2.
- Through the challenge, they take on the task of ‘project managing’ a building made from wooden blocks, taking on roles such as quantity surveyor, designer, and buyer.
- Students work in teams to recreate a building created in advance by our facilitators.
- They have limited time to memorise the building design and create sketches for reference.
- Working with a set budget, teams are required to recreate the ENGIE structure using their sketches to ‘purchase’ the correct number, size and shape of blocks.
- A mock up ‘builders yard’ is created from where the ‘materials’ are purchased, and students are charged for bricks and for every visit they make to the ‘yard’.
- The winning team is that which creates the best replica building, within budget and demonstrates collaborative working.
Planning and Design Challenge
- A 3-hour workshop aimed at secondary school students.
- Students work together to create and ‘market’ their own housing development.
- Tasks include creating a company name and logo, considering local demographics to determine the mix of property sizes and estate layout, managing a budget and designing a community facility or innovative environmental feature.
ENGIE staff have reached 1242 young people, through delivering 51 challenges in schools across Luton, Essex and the London Boroughs of Westminster, Waltham Forest and Lewisham. In particular, we have been successful in dispelling some of the myths around our industry, particularly around opportunities for women. For example, we chose to deliver our Planning & Design Challenge to an all girls’ school to mark International Women’s Day. At the start of the event, only one young woman had considered construction as a potential career – at the end of the session, the ‘show of hands’ was significantly higher!