Interns celebrate full-time roles with UK Power Networks

Interns celebrate full-time roles with UK Power Networks

Five interns who took part in a four-week ‘Power Among Us’ course have now been offered full-time roles with UK Power Networks.

The quintet who showed outstanding promise has been offered apprenticeships in craft attendant roles across the London power network.

The ‘Power Among Us’ programme by UK Power Networks worked in conjunction with multiple youth groups across the capital to offer work experience for young people from communities that are so far under-represented in the energy industry.

The initiative was inspired by the UK’s cost-of-living crisis, where significant levels of unemployment are being experienced in London. Opportunities were given to nine individuals not in employment, education or training (aka ‘NEETs’).

Participants spent two weeks in UK Power Networks’ offices where they developed their soft skills whilst gaining an understanding of how the company operates.

The second half of the programme saw them go out with highly trained engineers to see first-hand how the power network is maintained.

UK Power Networks aimed to provide interns with employability skills that can be transferred into multiple parts of the industry. Power Among Us’ first cohort proved to be a success, with every intern displaying skill and determination to learn about the industry. Those who stood out and exceeded UK Power Networks’ expectations have been offered full-time roles.

The Top 50 Inclusive Employer has made a concerted effort to give opportunities to those who have traditionally not considered, or had difficulty, in accessing careers in the electrical engineering industry. As a result of the programme’s success, the firm now plans to expand the initiative to the South East and East of England.

Natasha Paramasamy, STEM Outreach and Development Specialist who co-ran the initiative, says, “The progress and maturation observed in our interns is commendable. They have dedicated themselves wholeheartedly, embracing an open learning mindset throughout the programme. The presentations they delivered at the conclusion of the programme reflect not only their remarkable journey but also the positive influence the programme has had on their personal and professional development.”

Patrick Clarke, Director of Network Operations, who began his utility career as an apprentice, says, “I think the industry has got some way to go. It’s still not seen as an attractive industry to some young people, and certainly not to young people from diverse backgrounds.

“To make this change, fishing in many different pools is essential, so when we cast our nets there will be interest from all types of people – because the best candidates come from every part of society. Additionally, when they arrive in the industry, we must ensure the work environment is welcoming and flexible.”

Kamron Nicely, one of the interns involved, comments, “The skills that I’ve developed is learning the difference between being an electrician and an electrical engineer. If I wasn’t offered this opportunity, I would be doing voluntary work for an electrician, which is what I was doing before this. I would say this will have a good impact on my life and change my life because, hopefully, I can get to a place where I want to be.

“It’s going to impact my future by giving me the experience to come across business people, working class people and build networks in the future. I’m ready and excited to start at UK Power Networks right away.”

For more from UK Power Networks, click here.

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