First–year joinery apprentice at John Wheatley College, Robert McAllen, received an ‘inspection’ visit from his employer last week, Charlie McCrindle of CWM Home Improvements, to see how his training was coming along and to bolster his confidence.

Charlie, a Director of CWM Home Improvements, took Robert on almost a year ago and their working relationship has proved to be a real success.

Last year, CWM’s long term business planning identified that the company could take on an apprentice and, originally an East End lad himself, Charlie was keen to give an opportunity to someone local and committed who was prepared to do the work.

17yr old Robert, who hails from Parkhead, had come to John Wheatley College as a winter leaver from Eastbank Academy and, from the off, had shown promise on his construction skills programme. He was one of several young joinery students who had aptitude and talent and, after approaching John Wheatley College, Charlie was delighted to take Robert on as his apprentice.

Robert now works two weeks with CWM Home Improvements and two weeks college-based training, learning his trade and playing a full role in College life. Much as he’s happy in College, he’s also looking forward to being ‘on the tools’ permanently as he truly enjoys his work. He says,
“It’s great to get this chance to learn my trade AND to be employed. I’m loving it – I really appreciate the skills of the lecturers and the chance to work with Charlie and everyone at CWM.”

CWM Home Improvements are a small family-run business which is based in Uddingston but has a showroom at the Forge Market in Parkhead. The company provides a range of quality home improvement services, specialising in window installation, and recognises that it has a vested interest in the development of the East Glasgow community and its residents. Charlie said,
“Right away, Robert showed the right type of attitude and willingness to learn and I’m very pleased that we’ve been able to give him an opportunity to develop his joinery and personal skills in this way. We also feel that, by employing locally, we’re putting something back into the community.”

Alan Sherry, Principal of John Wheatley College, added,
“We are delighted that CWM Home Improvements is providing this opportunity for Robert and engaging with the College. The local economy is very much dependent on its businesses and employers. The commitment that Charlie’s company is making is an excellent example of collaborative working and we’re grateful that they’re now a stakeholder in our operations. Robert’s tutors are very pleased with his progress and continue to be impressed by his ‘can-do’ attitude. He’s a real credit to them.”

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