Renfrewshire Council

Sweco Graduate Engineer Scott Farrell

Graduate job thanks to council contract

On any given day, Scott Farrell finds himself researching kerb stones and positioning bus stops. An unusual past time it's not, for the former Gleniffer High pupil is now a Graduate Engineer at leading engineering, environment and design consultancy Sweco.

The 26-year-old is playing his part in delivering the Glasgow Airport Investment Area project, which includes new roads, bridges and cycleways underpinning a new 150-acre investment area bringing thousands of jobs to Renfrewshire.

Scott, from Foxbar, said: "My role is focused on engineering and transportation and my first project is working on the Glasgow Airport Investment Area Project, which has been great as being from Paisley I know the area well.

"I've been preparing drawings, looking at the drainage and even researching kerb stones - I never knew there'd be so many to choose from!

"It's a really challenging job which I like and every day I'm learning something new. It is exciting to be involved in such a major project for Renfrewshire and I've already planned my cycle past the bus stop that I helped to design."

Scott's job is the result of a community benefit, which are built into council contracts to provide people with jobs, work experience and even funding for local projects.

After completing his degree from the University of the West of Scotland, Scott struggled to land a graduate post, but the Council's employability team put him in touch with colleagues at Sweco, who have supported many community benefits as part of their work with the Council on these major Glasgow City Region City Deal infrastructure projects.

Scott completed a 4-week work experience placement and impressed enough to earn a summer internship. Three months later and Sweco bosses offered him a full-time permanent position at their Glasgow office.

"I'm so grateful that through the community benefit process I was given the opportunity to gain graduate level experience and show what I could do," explains Scott.

Council contracts last year totalling £89million have delivered vital community benefits.

Since they were first recorded in 2015, winning bidders have committed to more than 300 employability opportunities and offered 230 different educational initiatives.

Some 40 percent of contracts procured last year were awarded to Small and Medium Sized Enterprises (SMEs) and work is well under way to grow this further and encourage more social enterprises and volunteering organisations to tender, while also building the capacity of local suppliers to bid for future contracts.

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Published on 6 September 2018