Construction students at Solihull College & University Centre have finished the academic year by learning skills outside of their curriculum in order to increase their employability.
Students covered wall tiling which was skill they had not previously encountered. The aim was to give the students a wider skillset to showcase for job trials or interviews as well as give them extra practical experience following a year of disruption due to COVID.
Students gave up their free time to attend the sessions convinced of the worth of learning and enhancing their skillsets. Tutor Carl Pedley explains the process: “The students plastered a wall area and then measured out a set tiling job. They all had different areas to work on. All the students that attended have completed their studying and no longer need to attend lessons.”
Plastering student Shaun Frost explained why he attended the session: “It was good to do something different and learn a new skill, I really think I could do this again on a bigger job.”
The session followed the innovative ‘Teach a Teacher’ project that was introduced earlier in the academic year to build and develop student teacher relationships. The project involved students teaching their English and Maths tutors elements of their vocational course.
English tutor Rachel Arnold, who was part of the project, also attended the tiling session and was helped by the students to produce some tiling work herself. She commented: “It was fun to try a new skill and to have the help and support of the students who were also having a go at something new. I enjoyed being able to keep practising and definitely got better towards the end. It was fun to learn alongside the students.”