Wates, Re-Shaping Tomorrow

Education Award supported by UKCES, Highly Commended 2013

In 2012, Wates worked in partnership with 400 students from schools in deprived communities, raising aspirations among young people and winning business as a result.

Reshaping Tomorrow

Business impacts

  • Wates has attracted senior management talent to the firm through the programme
  • It has been a factor in winning four education projects in Coventry
  • It has won external awards and provides opportunities to develop and engage staff

Social impacts

  • 100% of students said that they had benefited from working with business volunteers, gained an insight into working life and had started thinking about their future career
  • Provided valuable strategic support to school leaders

Wates logoWates champions Business in the Community’s (BITC) Business Class programme in eight schools in some of the UK’s most deprived areas. It has partnerships with three other schools and sponsors a University Technical College. 

The partnerships are designed to raise aspirations and improve attainment through curriculum activities and support for the schools’ leadership.

In 2012, Wates supported more than 400 students by:

  • providing women role models to inspire female students to consider careers in construction

  • offering CV and interview workshops

  • providing mentoring and work experience for groups of students at risk of becoming NEET (not in employment, education and training).

Staff members from across the business are involved. Twenty eight staff members are school governors and 40 are mentors and coaches. Senior managers, including the CEO, are directly involved in volunteering activities.

Paul Drechsler, Chairman and CEO, chairs BITC’s Education Leadership team. He has expanded Business Class by 200 partnerships and raised its profile with government stakeholders, including Education Secretary Michael Gove.

Richard Hardi, Chair of UBS and judging panel chair, said:

“The commitment and leadership of Wates in supporting schools in the areas of greatest need is inspirational. Wates champions BITC’s Business Class programme in eight schools, it has partnerships with three others and sponsors a University Technical College as well. Twenty eight staff members are school governors and 40 are mentors and coaches. It is a powerful and inspirational example of the impact strategic education business partnerships can have.”


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