Murphy joins Class of Your Own to grow next generation of builders

Leading international construction and engineering company, J. Murphy & Sons Limited, has joined up to the Class of Your Own (COYO) scheme and ‘adopted’ Blessed Trinity RC College in Burnley, Lancashire to help grow the next generation of young people into the construction industry.

At a launch ceremony on 5 May held at Blessed Trinity RC College, Murphy Managing Director for the North, John B. Murphy met with pupils, the school board, and members of COYO, to officially adopt the school. 

John B. Murphy, Murphy Managing Director, pictured demonstrating design software to pupils, and outside of Blessed Trinity RC College, discussing how Murphy will be supporting the school in developing their skills and providing information about the construction industry.

The scheme is directly funded by Murphy who will support Blessed Trinity RC College with expertise and practical help, including giving students opportunities to experience the technical side of the industry through site visits, mentoring, and professional support from Murphy employees. Crucially, the scheme also empowers the teachers too, by giving them the latest in industry knowledge so they can better deliver the curriculum and have confidence in what they are teaching.

Rob Houghton, Group Learning and Development Manager at Murphy, commented: “We worked with Class of Your Own at the 2014 NEC Skills Show and saw that it was doing great things to improve the perception and attractiveness of our industry, which was why we joined its Adopt A School scheme. Blessed Trinity RC College has been using its own initiative to deliver construction related projects, but without any committed industry support, which was why we were so keen to adopt the school and provide practical assistance in showing young people what a great industry construction is.”

Alison Watson, Managing Director of Class of Your Own, said: “If you google ‘famous engineer’ and ‘vocational’ and then hit images, is it any wonder kids aren’t interested in construction as a career? The images aren’t exactly inspiring! The whole industry needs to do much more to get across to young people, their parents, and their teachers that building isn’t just digging holes. Companies like Murphy work on some of the most exciting construction projects in the country, like Crossrail and the Thames Tideway Tunnel, and young people need to see that.”

Sarah Fenton, Strategic Partnership Director at the CITB, commented: “Class of Your Own is a great initiative to give young people practical qualifications in construction, and educate them on the benefits of potentially working in the industry. With these qualifications young people can access University and higher apprenticeships. It helps reinforce what the CITB does by giving people qualifications, improving competencies and developing future skills. It will be really positive if some of the students from Blessed Trinity RC College complete their qualifications and ultimately join the industry. It’s about helping support the talent pipeline for the next generation.”

Class of Your Own is an industry leading built environment education provider, formed to inspire young people to learn new technical and professional skills and consider construction as a potential career. This follows the government’s industrial strategy which sets a target for young people to join the construction industry. The programme encourages leading construction companies to Adopt A School to provide training, support and resources to facilitate the ‘Design Engineer Construct!’ course, giving students fully accredited level one, two and three qualifications (equivalent to GCSE and A’ level with UCAS points).