Posted on 09 November 2022

A group of Leeds College of Building students were left uplifted and motivated after a five-day training and networking programme about property and regeneration careers.

Run by a national not-for-profit collaboration, ‘Regeneration Brainery’ aims to illustrate the diversity of careers in property and construction for young people, from ESG, finance, and construction to quantity surveying, architecture, development, marketing, and engineering.

The free programme uses an intense schedule of mentor workshops, hands-on group projects, office and site tours, and networking with industry leaders.

The Level 3 Diploma in Construction & the Built Environment cohort spent all week with property and construction experts across the city. Working at SpaceMade, Desco, Bruntwood, Lloyds, and Spaces, students networked, listened to talks, and undertook challenging tasks set by the professionals.

Coming to Leeds for the first time, Regeneration Brainery is a programme that aims to increase property sector diversity and inspire students to consider regeneration as a future career path. Leeds was targeted as a city rolling out ambitious construction plans and with a plentiful supply of jobs in the sector.

The long-term aim is for skills to be retained within a community and for students to go on to change and regenerate the places they live and love. Past programmes have visited Birmingham, Manchester, and Bristol.

A representative of Regeneration Brainery said:

“At the end of the week [students] presented their plans to a panel of experts, which would be a nerve-wracking experience for most of us. The students leaped out of their comfort zones and smashed it. Not only did the bright young minds present confidently, they whipped up some of the best ideas we've seen.

“The Brainees ended the week feeling inspired about the future and opportunities at their fingertips. And they weren't the only ones... our mentors felt inspired by the new talent and ideas about to join the industry.”

One student who attended the event was Kimbrisha Etienne, currently studying the Level 3 Diploma in Construction & the Built Environment at Leeds College of Building. Her passion for property and regeneration shone throughout the week and her goal is to become an architect and design buildings and shape her city's skyline.

Through the Brainery, Kimbrisha made some meaningful connections with industry leaders, getting her foot in the door with some exciting architects. Regeneration Brainery is now working to secure her a work placement and support her as she grows into a property professional.

Kimbrisha said:

“Words are not enough to express the feelings in my heart and how grateful and happy I am that Regeneration Brainery has given me this opportunity.”

On completion, participant “brainees” gain access to an elite graduate club with opportunities to participate in work experience placements, apprenticeship preparation programmes, internships, jobs, and other exciting prospects.

Thanks to all the employer partners who contributed to the transformative week, including: