Project Scotland

Stonemason learns new trade via Modern Apprenticeship

Gordon Wilson

A stonemason who decided to embark on a new career after the recession hit his business is on course to become a joiner through an adult apprenticeship.

Gordon Wilson (33) combines his studies at New College Lanarkshire’s Motherwell Campus with working for Wilson Inglis Joiners in Bonkle, Wishaw. He is one of 700 Modern Apprentices at the College who follow this model of earning while they learn.

New College Lanarkshire is supporting Scottish Apprenticeship Week 2017, organised by Skills Development Scotland, which runs from March 6–10. 

As an adult apprentice, Gordon is in his final year of the Level 3 SVQ in carpentry and joinery, and is being trained through a contract with CITB.

He said, “It was a bit daunting at the start coming back to college, because I’m used to being at the top of the tree in my own trade, and I’ve come to this trade and I’ve had to start all over again. I still do a wee bit of stonework but the work dried up a lot after the recession – I was maybe doing a week of work and then a week in the house, so I wasn’t living to my means.

“It was a big decision to make at the time, and it has definitely helped that I’m a banker mason to trade, so I’m working with power tools all the time. Now that I’ve found my groove I’m really enjoying it and I want take it further.”

Once he completes his apprenticeship, Gordon hopes to continue his studies with a day-release advanced construction course.

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