Today, we were very excited to showcase the achievements of DEC students at Digital Construction Week and the Geobusiness Show.

COYO Teaching Development Manager Daniel McDonagh, Tom O’Dwyer, Lauren Cunningham, Kieran Barton, Alizah Mughal and Saifudin Harris.

First up, former students took to DCW’s People and Change Theatre with COYO’s Teaching Development Manager and DEC Teacher Daniel McDonagh. The students wowed the audience with their own ‘Stories of Change’ that have transformed their futures. Aged between 17 and 22, they represented DEC schools from across the UK:

Thomas O’Dwyer – Heathcote School, now Mott MacDonald, London
Alizah Mughal – Drummond Community High School and Edinburgh College, now Heriot Watt University
Kieran Barton – The Cardinal Wiseman Catholic School, Ealing, now Taylor Woodrow – Vinci
Lauren Cunningham – St Ambrose Barlow R C High School, Salford, now Sweco
Saifudin Harris – Sir George Monoux College and an aspiring quantity surveyor looking to pursue a degree apprenticeship in Quantity Surveying from September 2022 (please!).

Less Talk, More Action

Trevor Wilson, Cronton College and Topcon Positioning GB apprentice

Over at the Geobusiness ‘Future of the Profession’ theatre, COYO’s Alison Watson MBE led a provocative discussion to set the standard for Geospatial apprenticeship success.

Across the UK, the current geospatial skills crisis has reached critical level and attracting young talent to the sector is more important than ever. This year, Cronton Sixth Form College, a DEC Centre of Excellence and National Training Centre, delivered the first ‘DEC Survey School’ with COYO, Topcon Positioning GB, The Survey School, The Survey Association and the Chartered Institution of Civil Engineering Surveyors. This was followed by an appeal to employers across the North west to support delivery of the new Level 3 Geospatial Survey Technician apprenticeship, now running successfully at Cronton since September 2021.

Follow the Lead

Topcon’s UK and Ireland Regional Director David Bennett appealed to the audience to follow their lead and take the leap to recruit an apprentice, and this was echoed by the college’s Head of Digital Built Environment Jo Hall and Digital Construction Works’ and CICES’ Andy Evans, now tutoring at the college every Monday. The session concluded with an impassioned, inspirational presentation by DEC student and Topcon apprentice Trevor Wilson, whose attendance on the DEC Survey School inspired him to follow a surveying pathway.

To enquire about apprenticeships at Cronton College, contact Jo Hall:


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