Super six get down to work

Six local graduates have secured paid work placements with the Council as part of a scheme to help young people get a foot in the door.

East Dunbartonshire Council launched the Grad+ programme to offer a first chance to unemployed or underemployed graduates in the area.

James Armstrong from Torrance, graduated in Mechanical Engineering at the University of Glasgow last summer and has taken up a work placement in Corporate Assets.

He said: “I have been for many job interviews since graduating but only got so far in the process. The feedback I consistently received was that I didn’t have the experience that employers were looking for, which was very frustrating.

“When I saw the Grad+ programme advertised I immediately knew it would be the perfect opportunity for me to gain some valuable work experience with the Council that could eventually help lead to a permanent job.”

Six graduates were recruited for positions within the council, in Legal Services, Audit and Risk, Corporate Assets, Procurement, Customer Services and Transformation.

Councillor Rhondda Geekie welcomed the new recruits. She said: “I am very proud that we as a Council are giving them this helping hand onto the first rung of their careers, with a high-quality, year-long training and work experience programme.

“As the largest employer in the area we continue to set a positive example to other businesses in East Dunbartonshire and would encourage other employers to also look at developing employability opportunities for local young people.”

The graduates will also be paid the living wage and each of them will be assigned with a mentor to give them employability skills support and help them succeed in their chosen career.

Grad+ was launched last year and ten graduates were given placements leading to eight of them finding further employment or training.

Phase three of the programme will run for one year from April 2015.

More information is available from the Employability and People Development team at East Dunbartonshire Council on 0300 123 4510.