CGC sends manager back to school

Paisley construction firm City Gate Construction (CGC) went back to school this week to deliver two days of learning about joinery.

The company’s carpenter Andy Watson praised pupils at the town’s Gleniffer High School for their enthusiasm and willingness to learn.

CGC sends manager back to school

(from left) Kyle McGregor, Councillor Shaw, Corey Ferguson, Andy Watson of CGC, Kieran Anderson and Dean Bruce 

Contracts manager Andy, returning to his old school, spent time showing the fourth year pupils how to do things like create a partition wall, hang doors and other joinery-related tasks.

CGC thought a good way of carrying out its ‘Community Benefits’ commitment to Renfrewshire Council was to head into the classroom and share some skills with young people who may want to choose a career in construction.

Andy said: “I feel very privileged to have gone back to my former school where I learned such a lot. Showing young people joinery may help them make choices when it comes to picking a career. I hope they found the experience worthwhile.”

CGC’s visit was ideal timing because Gleniffer High School is currently undertaking a five week-long “enrichment programme” designed to offer pupils a range of employability skills.

Dave Palmer, commercial director of CGC, accompanied Andy along with colleague Gary Tracey, CGC’s finance director.

Dave said: “CGC has a strong track record of helping communities where we operate as a business. Engaging with young people is one of the things we are most enthusiastic about and we want to thank Renfrewshire Council and Gleniffer High School for making Andy’s visit happen.”

Councillor John Shaw, convener of Renfrewshire Council’s finance, resources and customer services policy board, visited the school to see the pupils being taught by Andy.

Councillor Shaw said: “It was nice to see first-hand the skills the Gleniffer High School pupils are gaining thanks to this innovative opportunity with City Gate Construction. For Andy, as a former pupil, sharing his experience will I’m sure have been invaluable for the pupils as they gain important employability skills.

“We want council contracts to benefit Renfrewshire communities and as well as doing business with local companies, we place a strong focus on working with winning contractors to provide opportunities such as work experience, apprenticeships and funding for local projects.”

CGC was assisted in setting up the visit by Developing the Young Workforce West based at West College Scotland’s Paisley campus.

Its task is to build relationships between local schools and colleges and employers.

Bob Davidson, programme director of DYW West, added: “What a simple yet powerful example of an ex-pupil coming back to their old school – to share their experience in a hands-on manner to benefit current pupils.

“A huge thanks to CGC for all their efforts from coming up with the idea to turning it into a reality with Gleniffer High School.”

DYW West is keen to hear from employers wanting to share their work experience with employees’ old schools. More details on DYW West are at

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