Harris Lamb Blog – 4th May
The Outlook for students – is the future bright?
By Richard Fantham, Director and Richard Jordan, Associate Head in the School of Property, Construction & Planning at Birmingham City University.
“So, how is the property industry these days?” is a question we are often asked, particularly by those aspiring to join the profession. Whilst some of us, sadly, are old enough to remember previous recessions, for young people starting out in their career, these are no doubt challenging times.
From speaking to Richard Jordan, Associate Head (Academic) in the School of Property, Construction & Planning at Birmingham City University, his views on this issue are most illuminating:-
“There is evidence that students (and their parents!) are becoming increasingly strategic in deciding which university courses to pursue. There is now a greater emphasis on vocational courses which lead to specific professional careers. At Birmingham City University (BCU), and in spite of the well-documented difficulties in the property and construction markets, graduates continue to find relevant jobs to enable them to progress to professional qualification.
“Within the degree programmes themselves, there is now a far greater emphasis on employability – for this is what the students and their future employers desire. At final year level, in particular, students engage in practice-based research projects in conjunction with real clients and it is the clients, along with the academic staff, who are directly involved in assessing the outcomes. In certain cases, the advice and recommendations of the students contribute directly and inform actual policy decisions which are implemented in the real world.
“These activities are designed to enhance the employability of students, and the evidence is that this is borne out by the numbers of graduates who enter the industry despite the recent downturn. It is anticipated that, within the property and construction sector, as firms and companies necessarily start to expand again, the demand for graduates will exceed supply. Given the skills with which such graduates are now equipped, this is even more likely to be the case. For these reasons, there is probably no better time to be entering degree programmes in areas related to property and construction!”
It is therefore encouraging to see that the academic view is positive. It is always worth remembering that properties will always have problems to solve or ongoing issues to deal with, so even in a period of difficult economic conditions, our professional advice will be required by Banks, occupiers, landlords, investors and developers alike.
At Harris Lamb we continue to expand our range of services to adapt to the needs of our clients. Our business continues to grow, both in terms of revenue and staff numbers, in order to ensure that we can meet the needs of our clients, and that we are always appropriately resourced with the best people.
Disclaimer: The views expressed within this article or weblog (‘blog’) are the personal views of the contributors and authors only and do not necessarily reflect the views of any named companies or their employees.