Platform of Opportunity event links energy sector with next generation


11th July 2014

MORE than 250 students from across Great Yarmouth and the wider Norfolk and Suffolk area have been getting unique behind the scenes access into some of the region’s largest oil and gas industry service companies this week as part of an innovative, first of its kind, education programme.

The students, who are all in Year 10 and 12, are interacting with staff at Fugro Alluvial Offshore Ltd, Petrofac, Aquaterra Energy Ltd, AKD Engineering, Seajacks UK and Fraser Offshore Ltd to see how different sectors, companies and disciplines come together to form the oil and gas industry.

Throughout the week they will discover how exploration and production operators find, extract and process hydrocarbons. They will examine onshore and offshore roles; take part in interactive well engineering and vessel workshops and tour specialist workshops and geotechnical laboratories.

Today (Friday, July 11th) a group of Year 12 students will be visiting Fugro Alluvial Offshore Limited where they will be participating in a Health and Safety “hazard hunt”. Directed by the QHSE Manager Lee Williams, students have the opportunity to learn about the main principles of Health and Safety within the industry and the chance to win prizes by completing a hazard observation exercise across the site and workshop.

The Platform of Opportunity programme is funded and managed by oil and gas skills organisation OPITO in academic partnership with East Norfolk Sixth Form College.

Regional development manager Liz Davis-Smith said: “This is like no other education programme in the industry and there has been an unparalleled level of co-operation between all the partner organisations to ensure it provides an informative and relevant overview to young people thinking about their options.

“It not only gives pupils a great insight into the size and scale of the oil and gas sector in the region, it allows them to connect with leading professionals and see first-hand the diverse range of careers oil and gas offers and the skills needed to achieve them.

“The foundation of knowledge the students will take away from this week will set them on the right path for success in the future.”

The young people will also participate in a personal branding seminar; alerting students to the pitfalls of social media with tips on image, self-confidence and CV writing skills.

Daphne King, principal said: “East Norfolk Sixth Form College is delighted to be working in partnership with OPITO on this cutting edge project. This region offers new and exciting prospects for career progression and I am grateful to OPITO for providing a unique opportunity for our young people to visit some of our most enterprising businesses within the oil and gas industry.”

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