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Work placement scheme celebrates decade of success

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Work placement scheme celebrates decade of success

A joint work placement initiative between North East property company Adderstone Group and Northumbria University is celebrating its tenth year by welcoming onboard this year’s influx of work placement students.

The scheme, which sees Northumbria students from a host of built environment related courses receive on the job experience and invaluable training during a year-long work placement, is in its tenth year at Adderstone Group and continues to grow from strength to strength.

This month the Group has welcomed four work placement students undertaking a variety of built environment courses at Northumbria University including Real Estate Management, Quantity Surveying, Planning & Real Estate Development and Architecture.

The students will have the opportunity to work across the Group’s portfolio of businesses which include property development, commercial estates management, construction and lettings where they will gain skills, on-site knowledge and fantastic networking opportunities.

This year’s students include 19-year-old Chris Craine from the Isle of Man studying Planning & Real Estate Development Surveying at Northumbria University. He said: "I’m really looking forward to being able to put into practice the skills I’ve learned on my course in a specialist industry whilst building contacts and knowledge as I go.

“It is always beneficial to have relevant work experience to complement your degree and I believe that because of the opportunities the work placement scheme will provide it will help me to secure a job within the industry once I have graduated.”

Paul Tognarelli, Group Managing Director at Adderstone Group has been delighted with the impact the work placement scheme has had and continues to have across the business. He said: “In the ten years that we have been running this joint venture we have seen many candidates bringing fantastic qualities to our portfolio of companies. As a result we have expanded the number of work placements from two or three each year to four or five.

“The students invariably bring ideas, qualities and enthusiasm to the role and as a result many have made a significant impression during their placements. The work they have done has been of great benefit to Adderstone Group as well as to their overall experience and career development.”

Dr Kevin Thomas, Head of Department – Architecture and Built Environment at Northumbria University said: “At Northumbria we are proud to work with over 550 employers who sponsor our undergraduate programmes, providing invaluable opportunities for our students. The Adderstone placement scheme is a great example of this, allowing our students to gain first hand industry experience.

“This continued support from employer partners has been instrumental in confirming Northumbria’s position as one of the top ten universities nationally for graduates entering professional employment.”

Wider feedback for the scheme at Adderstone over the past ten years has been overwhelmingly positive with many placement students securing long-term career successes with the Group’s portfolio of businesses. James Atkinson, 29, currently heads up Adderstone’s Commercial Estates division having joined the company eight years ago as a work placement student from Northumbria University.

James said: “Undoubtedly the initial work placement enabled me to secure invaluable on-site training and experience and it also gave me the opportunity to prove myself to the business. At the end of the placement I was asked to stay on and develop my career further and spent time working across the company’s residential lettings, management, and development sectors before leading the commercial estates division, a role I have been in for over three years now, looking after a portfolio of over £25 million pounds.

“I would certainly recommend the opportunities that a work placement brings and Adderstone have been incredibly supportive throughout the process.”

This year’s students will work on a selection of development projects including the creation of 228 studio apartments designed for student living in Upper Ouseburn. The eight-story £17million pound development is underway and will provide over 100 construction jobs during the build which will be completed by July 2014. The development will welcome its first influx of student residents in September 2014.

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