It’s day 4 of National Apprenticeship Week and its a pleasure for us to introduce our other Degree Apprentice, Lauren Gillmore, to you. Lauren has been with B&M for 6 months and is currently in Year 2 of her BSc in Quantity Surveying degree. Below, we share the story of her route into construction and her aspirations for the future.
Lauren’s first experience in construction came when she was young, her Mum had purchased a property that required renovating and Lauren witnessed the work that when into creating a newly refurbished home. At the time, although Lauren was interested in what she’d witnessed, the industry didn’t quite resonate as a choice and as Lauren progressed through school, she was considering becoming a teacher.
When she was doing her A-levels, Lauren’s Mum decided to sell the house and move onto her next project, this was when Lauren had a chance conversation with the local property surveyor who came to survey the house. ‘I asked him about his job and told him I had an interest in property and construction. He explained how wide the surveying professional was and told me to enquire to local surveying practices for work experience to learn more’. This led to Lauren undertaking two weeks of work experience with two separate consultancies and she was encouraged to take the Apprenticeship route to start her career in construction.
Lauren took up the opportunity to start an Apprenticeship with an infrastructure contractor, working on site to assist in managing costs on several key projects in Sevenoaks and Gatwick. She also enrolled at London South Bank University to start her BSc Quantity Surveying degree one day a week. Unfortunately, Lauren was only able to stay with this contractor for a year before the pandemic caused her to be let go.
Fortunately for us, Lauren got in touch with us in the summer and we offered her paid work experience before offering her a permanent role, enabling her to continue with her apprenticeship and degree. Lauren has flourished in her new consultancy side role and enjoys the variety of working on multiple projects at the same time. ‘I enjoy the social interaction this role offers, especially speaking with clients, contractors and the design team regularly to further projects, seeing a project coming together is very rewarding’
Looking back, Lauren explains that continuing with full time education at University wouldn’t have worked for her. ‘I have always been active and outdoorsy and I decided that another three years of being stuck at a desk and indoors at lectures and seminars all the time wasn’t for me’. By doing her Apprenticeship, Lauren found she wasn’t learning in isolation, the mix of work and theory allows her to apply what she has learnt and the diversity of work provides her with numerous learning opportunities.
Lauren’s advice for anyone looking for a career in construction is to “go and get some work experience and witness the industry for yourself and the opportunities it offers. I didn’t realise how vast the industry was until I was exposed to it.”
Lauren’s ambitions post apprenticeship are to further develop her skills into Project Management and add another string to her bow. She’s excited to see what the future holds, and so are we!