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Britain’s high-speed future provides opportunity for all

Nusrat Ghani has met students enrolling at the National College for High Speed Rail in Birmingham.

Empowering and inspiring jobs building Britain’s new high-speed railway are providing incredible opportunities for young people of all backgrounds, HS2Minister Nusrat Ghani said recently (3 October 2018).

The minister met brand new students enrolling at the National College for High Speed Rail (NCHSR) in Birmingham, as well as those entering their second year of study, to hear how they were gaining the vital skills that will unlock brilliant careers working on HS2.

HS2 will connect Birmingham to London before branching out to connect the great cities of the north, including Manchester, Leeds, and Sheffield – dramatically boosting capacity and connectivity on our rail network.

HS2 Minister Nusrat Ghani said:

The enthusiasm and ambition that this diverse group of students share is truly infectious, and they demonstrate the bright future that HS2 is offering young people – no matter their gender, ethnicity or background.

HS2 is quite simply more than a railway – it is an incredible opportunity to forge a well-paid, highly skilled and rewarding career. With 2000 apprentices expected to play their part in construction, these students are inspiring role models that can help build the talented workforce we need for the future.

Student Mariah Ahmed, 18, said:

Thanks to the National College for High Speed Rail I’m part of real engineering linked to our community and the biggest infrastructure project of my time, and all at such a young age.

Student Darren Chikono, 19, said:

The NCHSR has provided me with transferrable skills, which I can apply in industry. Being able to take on information from many industry leaders has proved to be crucial.

The visit follows the launch of HS2’s Skills Employment and Education Strategy, which is focused on encouraging more young people into transport-related careers and ensuring the project leaves a skills legacy for the UKeconomy. Over 100 apprentices are already working on HS2, with 30,000 new jobs to be supported during construction.

Throughout the Year of Engineering the government is joining forces with 1,400 partners, including the National College for High Speed Rail, to give young people across the UK a million direct and inspiring experience of engineering.

The industry needs 203,000 skilled recruits every year to 2024, and of those working in engineering only 12% are women and only 8% come from black, Asian and minority ethnic backgrounds.

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