A FORMER Cirencester College pupil has encouraged GCSE students to consider the T Level route. 

Archie Curtis recently undertook a T Level in construction at Cirencester College and is now doing an apprenticeship at Gloucester-based construction company EG Carter. 

T Levels are an alternative to A levels, apprenticeships and other 16 to 19 courses and focus on technical and vocational skills.

The courses have been designed with more than 250 leading businesses and employers to give students the knowledge and skills they need. 

Students spend 80% of the course in their learning environment, and the other 20% in an industry placement, where they put these skills into action.

Whilst studying construction at Cirencester College, Archie managed to acquire vital practical skills and an 'invaluable' industry placement that has set him up well for the future.

Archie said: “I have always had an interest in the construction industry, from a young age I would watch videos and be in awe at how interesting the job looked. 

"For me, a construction T Level was a natural fit. 

"During my course I completed an industry placement with my now employer EG Carter. 

"It really opened my eyes to the possibilities available to me and gave me real-life insights into what life in construction would be like. 

"Thanks to my T Level experience, I have improved my communication skills in a professional environment and developed my general understanding of building technology and the processes involved in helping a project run smoothly and safely.

"For young people interested in taking a T Level – I would definitely recommend it based on all the skills and opportunities it has provided me with so far. 

"The industry placement in particular is an invaluable way to gain exposure to an industry you want to know more about.

"If you’re not sure, try and do some research to decide what your interests are and talk to those around you and at school."