On course for a brighter future
A SIX week programme to help unemployed people gain skills in the process sector has been deemed a success.
The Introduction To Process Operations course was held by HCF Ltd and the Grimsby Institute at the Centre For Assessment Of Technical Competency (CATCH) in Stallingborough.
It was funded by Jobcentre Plus and involved 15 students working towards a City & Guilds 0610 Technical Certificate in process technology.
Sabine Holmes, HCF's skills manager, said: "It is the practical elements of the course which can be taught and assessed at the CATCH facility that really add value to this programme and make it successful.
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"Industrial employers recognise the value of training at the CATCH facility and we believe that this will give candidates an advantage when applying for jobs."
The course includes a mixture of theory and practical sessions which take advantage of the training facilities, guest lectures and visits to some of the region's largest process sites.
Suitable candidates from North East Lincolnshire were identified by Jobcentre Plus advisers. Student Holly Webb, 21, from Grimsby, said: "I was working as a home carer for the elderly before I was made redundant.
"I hated being out of work and asked the Job Centre advisers if there were any courses that I could take to help improve my chances of getting a job.
"They told me about this course, and I came along to the assessment day to see if I could make the grade.
"I was really chuffed that I passed the tests and was offered a place.
"There should be more courses like this available.
"I've really enjoyed it and think that more women should be encouraged to apply."
Fellow course member Ian Dannatt from Cleethorpes was working as a builder before becoming unemployed.
The 26-year-old said: "I've learnt a lot from the course and it has definitely made me more confident in applying for a role within the process sector."
The Grimsby Institute's head of school for engineering, James Danby, thanked two key industrial partners, Lindsey Oil Refinery and Novartis, and welcomed support from any other interested parties within the sector for future courses.
He said: "The candidates are learning from tutors with a wealth of experience in the oil and gas, chemical, pharmaceutical and engineering sectors, who will help them make informed choices about long term employment in the process industries."
Further six week introduction courses are planned and for more information call Jobcentre Plus on 0845 6043719.