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ABM Further Nurtures Next-Gen FM

Beckfoot Thornton JEEP
23 September 2022 | Updated 26 September 2022

Leading facilities solutions provider ABM has opened its doors to the fifth cohort to take part in its Junior Engineering Engagement Programme (J.E.E.P.), with an additional school on the roster.  

The 2022 programme kicked off at Bobby Moore Academy in London with the immersive course then touring schools in Bradford, Manchester and London between September and December. While previous years have focused primarily on the engineering side of facilities management, 2022 will see young people being introduced to roles that exist within aviation as well as soft services. ABM volunteers from across divisions will be attending sessions to mentor students.  


“We are committed to continuing to build momentum which is why we are excited to add an additional school to the J.E.E.P roster this year. Having achieved such fantastic results, we are more motivated than ever to drive the important work of inspiring the next generation of talent.” 


– John McPherson
ABM Managing Director, Business & Industry


What Is the J.E.E.P’s Purpose?


The J.E.E.P aims to tackle misperceptions of the FM industry and apprenticeships amongst young people and their parents and create a pipeline of future talent. Evaluated annually through the use of surveys for all stakeholders, including students, teachers, and volunteers, the J.E.E.P.’s latest results highlighted the success which ABM is having in achieving these goals:  


  1. 60 per cent  of students said they would consider an apprenticeship after completing the J.E.E.P  
  2. 40 per cent of students agreed they would be interested in a career in FM thanks to the J.E.E.P  
  3. 82 per cent of young people said they understood more about sustainability following the J.E.E.P 


The initiative has had nearly 550 graduates from 23 schools since 2017, and this year has its first all-female group of students. Promoting technical positions to young women is a major part of the J.E.E.P mission.  


The Potential of Apprenticeships in FM


ABM Managing Director, Business & Industry, John McPherson, says: “Apprenticeships and the facilities management industry offer a fantastic path into the working world. The J.E.E.P. initiative works to change the oily rags and no prospects perception of facilities management careers and apprenticeships. In reality graduate apprentices are earning between £26,000 and £30,000 just a year after qualifying – usually before they’re 20 years old – and they have no debt.  

“We are committed to continuing to build momentum which is why we are excited to add an additional school to the J.E.E.P roster this year. Having achieved such fantastic results, we are more motivated than ever to drive the important work of inspiring the next generation of talent.” 


Starting Early


Supported by independent education charity The Talent Foundry, the J.E.E.P. introduces year seven students, aged between 11 and 12, to the world of engineering and FM, bringing apprenticeships to their attention as a valid path to success before they choose their GCSE subjects.   

Cate Smith, Head of Programmes, at the Talent Foundry says: “We are delighted to be partnering with ABM for another year of the J.E.E.P. We know ABM is as passionate as we are about ensuring all young people have access to a range of opportunities, regardless of their socioeconomic background, and the J.E.E.P is a fantastic way to introduce young people to the world of facilities management and engineering. Year on year, our evaluations continue to demonstrate the positive impact the J.E.E.P has on aspirations, skills, and awareness of opportunities in the sector.  

“Everything we do at The Talent Foundry is aimed at encouraging young people to think about what they want to do in the future and then helping them get there.  It’s often difficult to imagine what different jobs and industries might be like, so programmes like J.E.E.P are invaluable, as they allow underserved young people an inside view into a profession while helping them develop essential employability skills.” 


Core Directions and Expansion


The J.E.E.P. gives students a guided introduction to core FM subjects, such as electricity, lighting and safety, through three classroom sessions. ABM team members attend each session to represent the industry, answer student questions and work with the young people on planned experiments and activities.

During the course, there is a theme of sustainability which is discussed throughout the sessions to build up to the students' final presentation in the final session. The final presentation is where the students will show their peers, teachers and guests from ABM a project they have created with the aim to make their school eco-friendly and sustainable.

In addition to the course being delivered by ABM and partners in schools, a teacher pack has been developed. This is available to all teachers to download on the J.E.E.P. microsite and Times Education Supplement. Created for easy use in secondary schools, the pack incorporates everything teachers need from experiment guides, equipment lists, presentations and worksheets. These resources are designed to be delivered in schools over four days and have been downloaded by over 1,000 education professionals to date. 


Picture: Teacher and students featured at a Beckfoot Thornton session by J.E.E.P. Image credit: ABM.

Article written by Bailey Sparkes | Published 23 September 2022


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