Ashe Construction Champions Social Value - MK College

Ashe Construction Champions Social Value through Partnership with MK College

Lauren Wandless, Social Value Manager at construction company Ashe Construction, says the partnership with MK College is helping them support their local community – and find their workforce of the future.

Ashe Construction first started working with the College in December 2021 when it was building the new South Central Institute for Technology (IoT) at its Bletchley campus.

Since then, it has hosted a dozen T Level students on work placements, helping them to collectively gain more than 700 hours of work experience.

Gulsheer Khan, one of the T Level students they hosted, has now begun a Level 4 Site Supervisor Apprenticeship, continuing his journey with the company.

Lauren explained, “We picked the best students from each site and invited them to the apprenticeship interviews – Gulsheer excelled and secured the position.”

Alongside hosting T Level students, the company has also organised site visits for students, sponsored the College’s whole T Level construction class for their CITB health and safety test (for the CSCS card), conducted career talks, coordinated a hoarding competition, contributed £10,000 to charity for Christmas hampers, and collaborated with IT students on an active data project.

Ashe Construction also facilitated a partnership with Encore Environment to recycle waste materials from the project into the local area.

Lauren said, “Social value is a big focus for us as a construction company. MK College really engage on social values, so they are a great partner to have.”

Lauren added, “The students were exceptional, and the staff have consistently offered great support – whenever we encountered any issues, they were always approachable and helpful. They’re super enthusiastic and you can see how much they care about their students in everything they do.”

On advice for other employers interested in hosting students on T Level placement, she said, “I’d say, give it a go! Having Gulsheer and the other students on their T Level placement taught us so much. It is a great way to really get to know the students better. You get a proper look at their skills and who they really are.”

Ashe Construction will welcome two new T Level students to start their work placements in the new year as they begin new projects, including building a new primary school and community health hub as part of MK Council’s MK East development.

Lauren said, “This is just the beginning of a long-term, continuous collaboration. Our aim is to engage more trade-specific students to join us and our supply chain as part of our ongoing plans.”

The T Level in Construction at MK College is intended for students who want to progress to a career in the construction sector, with a focus on design and surveying or civil engineering.

To find out more about working with MK College students, get in touch with the Work Experience Team:

To find out more about working with MK College students, get in touch with the Work Experience Team: