From education to employment

Hinkley Point C delivery partners and University of Exeter to tackle projected skills gap with new apprenticeship degree

Laing O’Rourke, in conjunction with partners on Hinkley Point C is to collaborate with the University of Exeter in offering a new part-time civil engineering degree apprenticeship. The University of Exeter will be the first Russell Group university to offer a degree of this type.

The BEng Civil Engineering Site Management degree will see students study over a five year period through a combination of on-campus residential, blended learning and real world projects. This approach offers participants the opportunity to obtain a degree while gaining valuable experience linked to one of the country’s most important infrastructure projects – Hinkley Point C.

Laing O’Rourke is collaborating with Hinkley Point C partners BYLOR, and with EDF Energy, to deliver a comprehensive programme alongside University of Exeter which will provide students with the dual benefits of studying at a top 10 UK engineering establishment while gaining valuable industry experience.

Katie McLean, Laing O’Rourke Programme Manager, said: “Hinkley Point C will be a hugely innovative and cutting edge project for all partners. A project of this stature provides the perfect platform to help develop talent in a unique and exciting learning environment. We are delighted to be partnering with such a prestigious institution as the University of Exeter in this exciting endeavour.”

John O’Connor, Laing O’Rourke Group Commercial and Human Capital Director, added: “Finding a solution to the skills gap in the UK construction industry is not only critical for the sector but also for the wider economy. Last year we released our skills report (Engineering the future: A ten-point plan to overcome the UK’s construction & infrastructure skills gap) which set out a 10 point plan to help tackle the current crisis. Our collaboration with the University of Exeter directly addresses one of those points; to increase the availability of Russell Group university part-time degree apprenticeships. We strongly believe that partnerships like these will play a major role in attracting and nurturing the talent required in our sector moving forward.”

Dr Khurram Wadee, Project Lead and a lecturer in Senior Engineering at the University of Exeter said: “The University of Exeter is well known for providing excellent education and training for undergraduates from across the spectrum of engineering disciplines. 

“We have now teamed up with Laing O’Rourke to offer a Degree Apprenticeship in Civil Engineering Site Management, which is a new form of programme, focused on providing engineering employees the chance to graduate with a Bachelor of Engineering degree from a top UK institution. 

“We are excited to be able to work closely with industry to offer a degree which will enable students to combine working on real civil engineering projects with a first-rate learning experience at Exeter.”

The initial intake for 2017 will comprise of 25 students split across the delivery partners. Each student will earn a salary throughout their studies and have their tuition fees paid for by the company they are working with.

As this Degree Apprenticeship is separate from the standard UCAS application process, applicants can apply in addition to and without affecting their five UCAS choices.

About Laing O’Rourke: With a heritage spanning over 150 years, Laing O’Rourke is an internationally-focused engineering enterprise with world-class capabilities. We operate an integrated business model comprising the full range of engineering, construction and asset management services delivering single-source solutions for some of the world’s most prestigious public and private organisations.

Committed to a sustainable future, Laing O’Rourke is re-thinking the way the built environment is designed, delivered and operates – collaborating with world-leading industry and academic partners, bringing innovative new solutions, ensuring the most efficient long-term engineering solutions.

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