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FIS invited its members to join the STEMAmbassador network. We were delighted that JimBrennan fromNova Plasterboard Systems has come on board. Jim shared with us why he decided to join the network: “The reason I signed up to become a STEM Ambassador was to have the ability to go into schools to tell themmy story and get my message across to those attending that may be less academically minded than others. I also strongly believe that this could give those from poor backgrounds the opportunity to succeed. Hopefully, the programme will encourage those that only see a “dead end” when they leave school to consider a career in construction. History influences everyone and a STEMAmbassadors’ history path will influence those that feel there is no path.” Skills FIND OUTMORE If you’re interested in becoming a STEM Ambassador and want to know more then why not visit: www.thefis.org/webinar-recordings/ stem Here you can listen to an overvie w of the Go Construct STEM Ambassador Programme, its benefits and how to get involved and sign up or www.thefis.org/2023/02/14/ interested-in-becoming-a-stem - ambassadors Here you can chec k out Go Construct’s top 10 reasons to become a Go Construct STEM Ambassador and signup or Call or email Marie Flinter on 0121 707 0077 or 07799 903103 marieflinter@thefis.org If you are already a registered STEM Ambassador working in the finishes and interiors sector, when you contact Marie, please let her know and FIS will then provide you with specific information and support to meet your needs. Source 1. www.stem.org.uk i www.thefis.org 9 Recent research says construction will need to recruit an additional 217,000 new workers by 2025 just to meet demand. The Go Construct STEM Ambassadors are part of a wider programme of CITB initiatives to tackle the skills shortage, including educating careers advisors on the huge variety of professions available, traineeships, work experience, virtual site tours and more. CITB approached and collaborated with FIS to produce presentation films designed to encourage young people to consider a career as a Dryliner. Alongside FIS members, Iain McIlwee, FIS Chief Executive and Oscar Venus, FIS Social Media Executive have both committed to becoming Construction STEM Ambassadors for our sector. Their main aim is to provide advice to the FIS members through their own experiences and encourage more people to become FIS Construction STEM Ambassadors. Go Construct STEM Ambassadors’ commitment is to be involved in at least two activities per year. The ambassadors lead a wide range of activities, including: • Running a trade stand at a careers fair, answering questions and handing out leaflets. • Delivering a talk, sharing your experiences of getting into and working in the industry. • Leading practical sessions or workshops, giving young people a taste of life in construction. • Providing one-to-one mentorship to someone who is just starting out. • Helping teachers to develop curriculum resources and activities. • Networkwith like-minded professionals, developing your own career as an ambassador. Go Construct has also partnered with STEM Learning 1 , the leading ambassador programme in the UK, to create a new partnership to grow the ambassador programme for construction and the built environment. What can ambassadors do and how can they support? Schools (both primary and secondary) and colleges can book a Go Construct STEM Ambassador to come into their classrooms, either face-to-face or virtually, completely free of charge. Ambassadors show how STEM subjects apply in the real world. They illustrate what a career in construction is really like, bring specialist equipment for young people to experience and make STEM relatable by bringing the experience of the every day into lessons. There’s no limit to the ways in which ambassadors can inspire the next generation. STEM in Construction Go Construct STEMAmbassadors bridge the link between studying STEM subjects and a career in construction for young people. Each STEM discipline has a clear route towards a rewarding, well-paid career in construction from civil engineers to architects and this is displayed by ambassadors who share their own journey from STEM to construction. Not only is becoming a Go Construct STEM Ambassador a great way to develop your employability skills and become a part of a community, through activities you will be helping to inspire the next generation of construction workers and change perceptions about the industry and the finishes and interiors sector! Why become an ambassador? Young people benefit enormously from this first-hand experience, and ambassadors often provide the very first spark of inspiration which convinces them to consider a career in construction. Anyone working in the industry can be a Go Construct STEM Ambassador. You just need to be passionate about construction and the built environment, and willing to share your experiences with others. The Go Construct website highlights the top reasons to join the programme. You can add value and have a positive impact by improving employability skills: ambassadors are involved in a wide range of activities and conducting these support services not only builds on current skills but can crucially help in learning new ones. Helping to change the perception of the industry: being part of Go Construct is much more than talking about the job, a key part is challenging the perceptions and stereotypes surrounding construction. Inspiring the next generation of construction workers: we want finishes and interiors sector to be aspirational and showcase what careers are available. Hearing first hand experiences is one of the most effective ways to inspire people. Showcasing and demonstrating diversity and inclusion: joining the programme allows the opportunity to encourage more underrepresented groups into the industry such as women, or disabled workers. Being a Go Construct STEM Ambassador not only helps encourage the next generation of construction workers, but brings plenty of personal benefits too, including: • Promoting awareness of issues that are important to you • Strengthening your CV as you progress your construction career • Making a real impact on the lives of young people • Joining a large, supportive network of like-minded people • Receiving training, experience and the opportunity to learn new skills • Achieving real continuous personal & professional development.

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