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Candice Homewood: LakeHouse

Graeme Manley: John Rowan & Partners

Joe Green: Mace

Matt Stafford: John Rowan & Partners

Matthew Globe: VINCI Facilities

Matthew Wright: Mace

Matthew Wright: Mace
Matthew completed a 12 month placement at Mace and returned to Westminster University on a part time basis to complete his degree whilst continuing to work. He is now a permanent Assistant Commercial Manager for Mace.

1.What have you been doing since university?

While I was on placement at Mace I decided that I really enjoyed the job and wanted to carry on so I transferred on to a part time degree which meant I could keep my job and complete the degree. I finished university a few months ago, so now back to working full time, which is what I like.

2.Did you find it hard to get a placement?

Yes, I did find it hard. Initially, the first two weeks of applying for jobs were easy, but after that it got difficult. In comparison to my friends that are in the year above, there were noticeably less jobs for my year.

3.What were the main things you were doing while on placement at Mace?

I spent the first six months shadowing the QS doing commercial management and the next six months were spent working with the construction manager, then gradually I took on more work and responsibility.

4.What have you enjoyed the most while at Mace?

Getting on site and getting an idea of what actually happens on site practically, you learn about it at university but you never really know until you’re there. You learn a hundred times faster once you’re in the job role than when in lectures.

5.What was the biggest challenge you have found so far?

Getting in the deep end on site and the pressure on site. You need to stick to programs all the time. The placement is really like a year long job interview, but I just worked hard and put in the hours.

6.What did the placement help with?

It gave me the edge, companies are always going to choose the person that has the experience and especially in construction, on site experience is really needed.

7.Did your friends find it hard to get graduate positions?

Only one or two of my friends from my year have jobs in the industry at the moment. They all had placements and job offers for when they finished but when it came down to it no one had any work on so they couldn’t take them on. Out of a class of 30-40, only two or three have jobs.

8.What’s your general view of graduate employment at the moment?

I think the industry is worse than three years ago. There are far more graduates these days looking for a smaller amount of jobs. I don’t think it will change for a couple of years.

9.What advice would you give to students?

Spend a long time on your CV, make sure you get it right and don’t send the same CV out to all employers. Take any placement opportunity available, if I didn’t have my placement, I think I would be unemployed now.

10.Where do you see yourself in five years time?

I really enjoy working at Mace so I would like to stay and progress through the company.

For further information:
John Rowan and Partners, Craven House
40 Uxbridge Road, Ealing, London W5 2BS
E contact@thepledge.org.uk
T +44 (0) 20 8567 6995