Waltham Forest College on track to support rail industry recruitment

Waltham Forest College has worked in partnership with Jobcentre Plus, the London Borough of Waltham Forest and rail network employers to develop this specialized five-week course as part of the College’s Sector Based Work Academy program offer.

The course helps unemployed local residents of Waltham Forest and surrounding areas find skilled employment. Learners who complete the course gain a railway engineering qualification, health and safety training and undergo medical testing to ensure they are certified to work on live railway.

The College has a fully installed railway track on site, providing the opportunity to gain valuable experience before progressing onto a live track. The program has been designed in partnership with rail employers to ensure training is fit for purpose and meets the demands of a growing skills gap within the industry.

Railway Engineering student, Shilpesh Patel, comments on his experience on the course.

He said, “I tried very hard to gain experience in the engineering industry. I was told by the Jobcentre about a railway engineering course at Waltham Forest College which could potentially lead to direct employment as an experienced track worker or railway engineer.

“My tutor has over 30 years of experience working in the rail industry, teaching practical modules such as the use of small hand tools while working on a track to understand the methods and tools required and their purpose in the railway industry.”

Janet Gardner, Principal and CEO of Waltham Forest College said; “This is a great example of Waltham Forest College, Waltham Forest Council and Jobcentre Plus working together, helping to address skills shortages in key industries and helping local people find better and better jobs. remunerated. The program has been extremely successful in helping unemployed Waltham Forest residents find work; 90% of learners have progressed to permanent employment in the railway industry. We are now looking to expand the scheme further to meet demand from employers in the UK rail, transport and infrastructure sectors.

Cllr Simon Miller, Cabinet Member for Economic Growth and Housing Development; noted; “All signals point to the rail industry facing the next big labor shortage, in part due to an aging workforce that hasn’t diversified at the same pace as others. industries. Waltham Forest College uses its excellent facilities and expertise to help get ahead of the problem with this unique course. As a local authority, we know our local job market very well, which puts us in the best possible position to help provide good candidates for the course – which also meets our main priority of connecting residents to high-quality jobs. quality. »

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