Whilst we have been supporting the construction industry for many years now by organising the annual Trades Awards celebrations, and the Build It conferences, working on Build Your Future was unchartered territory for us – swapping out industry professionals and replacing them with school pupils!
We have been lucky enough to work with the team from Grampian Construction Training on several different projects, so when they asked us to help them roll out their new ‘Build Your Future’ challenge to North East secondary schools, we jumped at the chance. The aim of the challenge was to raise the profile of the construction industry to S2 pupils, parents, and teachers, and highlight the range of exciting and rewarding career opportunities.
The success of Build Your Future depended entirely on bringing schools, educational institutions, and construction companies together at an early stage. Our team instantly began setting up meetings with clients and contacts, as well as developing new key relationships, and were delighted to find that everyone we spoke to was as passionate as were about the challenge. This was just as well, because we had some tight deadlines to stick to in the first six months!
Each of the 32 secondary schools in the North East was invited to enter a team of ten to take part in a half-day heat, consisting of three 30-minute construction-based tasks. Mearns & Gill pulled together an experienced and passionate committee to steer the event in the right direction, engaged with schools to ensure they were aware of the challenge, liaised with local colleges, universities and businesses to arrange venues and tasks for each heat, and secured sponsors to ensure that the challenge was completely free for participating schools. Our team event managed each heat and organised all transport for participating schools.
The winning team from each heat headed to Pittodrie Stadium for the final, to battle it out for a different kind of silverware than is usually seen there. Once again, Mearns & Gill managed all aspects of the event including transport, branding opportunities, sponsorship opportunities, filming and photography.
Whilst all ten teams performed very well, in the end there could be only one winner. Banchory Academy took the top spot, closely followed by Kemnay Academy in second place, and Ellon Academy in third.