A University of Lincoln construction student is gaining career inspiration thanks to hands-on work experience with Lindum Group at the Western Growth Corridor (WGC) in Lincoln.
Gina Smith, 20, is honing her site surveying skills as building company Lindum creates the first road access to the development from Skellingthorpe Road.
She was offered the six-week summer placement after completing a real project brief set by Lindum through the university’s Employer Projects scheme, which gives students valuable experience and career insights.
Gina, who is studying BSc Construction Science and Management, said: “I’ve been on site at the Western Growth Corridor from week one.
“The best thing about it is it’s practical – I’m not an office girl.
“One of my course modules, land surveying and engineering, was 80 per cent coursework, so to come here and apply that knowledge is a huge bonus.”
The former Lincoln UTC Triple Engineering student added: “What I want to do as a career is to be a Construction Manager, but with engineering knowledge and experience because that will make it easier for me.
“I don’t want to be managing something I know nothing about.”
Her three days a week learning at WGC has included ‘setting out’ activities, in which plans are transferred onto the land for construction workers to follow, as well as mapping underground utilities pipes and cables.
Gina also does one day a week work experience at the £8.6m Campus for Future Living health and education facility in Mablethorpe, which Lindum is building for East Lindsey District Council.
She has been seeing how computer aided design (CAD) is used to help progress the project.
Gina, who also works part-time at a Lincoln engineering firm making components for turbines in addition to her studies, thanked the university and Lindum for helping inspire her future.
“If I had not gone through the university’s Employer Projects scheme I would not have known where to start,” she said.
“Lindum has given me a great opportunity – the company is passionate about an inclusive construction industry and promoting students and young people in engineering.”
Emma Parker, Employment Skills Co-ordinator at the University of Lincoln, said: “Working with Lindum has enabled us to extend our Employer Projects scheme to a wider area of business and offer students an authentic opportunity to gain experience in key business operations.
“Students from a range of courses have been able to gain insights into how their transferrable skills could be utilised in the construction industry, even if their degree course does not obviously align itself.
“This has widened their understanding of the types of roles they could move into once they complete their degree.”
Councillor Naomi Tweddle, Portfolio Holder for Inclusive Economic Growth at City of Lincoln Council, said: “We’re very pleased that the Western Growth Corridor development is providing essential work experience for budding construction workers like Gina.
“Gina has proved to be an extremely hard worker and her experience working on the Western Growth Corridor site has given her a better insight into construction work opportunities.
“We wish her all the best in her future endeavours and look forward to many more opportunities where the development helps progress future employees’ careers.”
Matthew Jones, Group Framework Manager at Lindum Group, who is a former setting out engineer, said: “It is fantastic that we could help point Gina in the right direction that will provide a fantastic technical understanding of how things are constructed from the ground up.
“We are always looking for top local talent and encouraging more people into the industry is important to us.
“It is great that we can work with two important local clients, the University of Lincoln and the City of Lincoln Council, to help deliver social value.”
The WGC development of 3,200 new homes, a neighbourhood centre, a business park, a spine road through the centre of the development, and a new football ground is being delivered on land north of Skellingthorpe Road owned by the City of Lincoln Council and Lindum Western Growth Community Ltd.
Work began on 7 August to create the first access route into the site, which will result in a new road junction with traffic lights on the corner of Skellingthorpe Road and Birchwood Avenue. The works are expected to last around 52 weeks.