As construction work goes ahead for HS2’s West Midlands terminal station, a new partnership involving Birmingham City University has been unveiled to provide graduates an opportunity into employment in the rail and construction industries.
The partnership will involve support from principal contractors involved in HS2, and comes HS2 Ltd continues to provide major regeneration programmes across the Eastside.
The collaboration hopes to give this year’s Birmingham graduates the opportunity to work on the development of the HS2 rail line and in a range of construction settings. This follows HS2’s promise to generate quality jobs for local populations along the project route.
Despite being a new scheme, HS2’s partner has already provided five Birmingham university graduates with employment with the contractor for HS2.
Julie Venn-Morton, HS2’s Skills Manager for the West Midlands, said: “This forward-thinking partnership shows how we are working collaboratively with businesses and education providers to ensure that local people benefit from the broad range of job opportunities that HS2 is creating.
“BCU students are graduating with world-class skills. We want to retain that talent locally and create opportunities for the next generation of engineers and technical specialists to make their mark in the delivery of our world-class railway.”
Currently, HS2 has over 200 active construction sites and continues to support 22,000 jobs and apprentices in construction. HS2 has said it is committed to providing quality job opportunities for all, as it promises to support those from underprivileged and disadvantaged backgrounds.
Shilpi Akbar, Head of Stakeholders and Communities at one of HS2 Ltd’s key contractors, added: “We are absolutely committed to helping our future leaders get their foot on the career ladder.
“Through our unique partnership with Birmingham City University, we can do just that – offering the cream of the region’s talent the opportunity to develop new skills while working on one of Europe’s largest infrastructure projects.”
Standing opposite the university, the West Midlands station will bring students in Birmingham closer to the £340m state-of-the-art facilities at the university. As a high-speed rail line, HS2 will also help reduce journey times from major cities such as Leeds, London and Manchester.