New partnership to benefit young people in West Yorkshire

Thursday 09th June 2016
Staff from train company TransPennine Express (TPE) are giving up their time to take part in the Make the Grade Programme, helping to equip young people with the skills needed to become the next engineers and train drivers of the future.

More than 40 colleagues, ranging from conductors to managers are giving up their time to run a range of activities that encourage secondary school children from across West Yorkshire to develop their skills and learn more about the world of work.

Bridging the gap between young people and businesses, the Make the Grade scheme supports children with skill sharing through mentorships, Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) workshops, careers advice and talks about safety.

Without the proper skill base, the railway and subsequently, the economy in the North will lack the competitive edge needed to grow and prosper and it is crucial that we develop the skills needed for the future.

Make the Grade is run by Ahead Partnership, a social enterprise that connects businesses and communities to create social and economic change. This year, 24,000 children across West Yorkshire will benefit from the programme.

Sue Whaley, HR Director for TPE said: 

“We are delighted to be involved with this project which will run for the next two years. As the intercity rail operator for the North, we have a responsibility to the communities we serve and a vision to Take the North Further. It’s vital that future generations have the skills and support needed to strengthen their career prospects and we all have a part to play in this.

“The rail sector is growing rapidly and career prospects are bright for skilled workers.”

Tom Mansell, Project Manager from the Ahead Partnership said: 

“We are delighted to be working in partnership with TPE and feel we have a great opportunity to showcase the diversity of roles in the rail industry to young people. The programme has had an express start, with students from Leeds City Academy interviewing and presenting on a number of different roles at Huddersfield Railway Station.We look forward to supporting more primary and secondary schools across the region.”

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