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United Living retrains armed forces member as gas engineer

 · Posted in News

A member of the ex-service community has secured employment with United Living after the company retrained him as a fully qualified gas engineer.

Dean Cooper, 28, joined the Islington gas contract with the Refurbishment South team in June 2019 where he has been able to gain the skills and experience required to complete training in his new career path.

Dean said “After being on a course at Mid Kent College I was offered a work placement by United Living. This was a massive learning experience for me and it allowed me to get hands on with the job and to complete a portfolio of the work I had carried out. Each day I was teamed up with an engineer training me to carrying out servicing, installations and breakdown repairs giving me the experience and confidence I needed to go forward to complete and pass my assessments to qualify as an engineer myself.”

Neil Hawkins, Gas Manager, said: “It’s fantastic to be given the opportunity as a company to help individuals from the armed forces re-train and integrate back into normal civilian life. To play a part personally in training in this regard has been great. Dean worked very hard throughout his training with us and we are proud to offer him a job now it is complete.”

Dean continued: “In the army my role was to supply a mail service and to organise and transport classified material across operations, to ships and across the world. I spent most of my 12 years’ service abroad in Germany, Cyprus, Gibraltar, Kenya and Afghanistan. I knew before deciding to leave the Army that I wanted to learn a trade that I could continually progress in and have a job for life so it stood out to me after researching and talking to a neighbour that was already in the trade.”

United Living has previously hosted ex-forces personnel through similar schemes, providing construction training to boost employment opportunities, and plan to continue this in the future.

Daren Moseley, Chief Operating Officer at United Living, said: “The gas team have helped a number of ex-forces personnel over recent years, giving them the opportunity to complete the domestic gas course as well as giving them a great insight into working for a commercial organisation and dealing with residents on a daily basis. The skills shortage in the construction industry is widely documented and recruiting ex–forces personnel could be another great way we could look to address this along with investing in the likes of apprenticeships and graduates. I wish Dean all the luck in his career with us.”

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