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HCI Skills Gateway Announces £70k Funding for Property & Construction Professionals at Risk of Redundancy

Posted: 4th November 2020

The Housing, Construction & Infrastructure Skills Gateway, part of the Edinburgh and South-East Scotland City Region Deal, has announced £70,000 in postgraduate scholarship funding to support property and construction professionals at risk of redundancy.

Working in partnership with employers across South-East Scotland, the funding will support employees who have been furloughed or are now at risk of redundancy as a consequence of Covid-19 to take a sabbatical during 2021 and complete a fully funded postgraduate degree at Edinburgh Napier University, starting in January 2021.

The funding aims to retain talented professionals otherwise underrepresented in senior roles in Scottish Construction within the sector, developing their skills and knowledge to Masters level while retaining links with their employer – with a view to returning to work post-pandemic.

Employees under-represented in the construction industry – women, BAME people, people with disabilities, single parents and carers, and veterans – can apply for their postgraduate scholarship fees to be paid by the HCI Skills Gateway, while their employer supports the employee with a 12-month sabbatical and a £15,000 stipend to support them during their studies. While saving employer’s costs up-front, the employee retains their employment rights and gains advanced Masters level training.

According to Kirsty Connell-Skinner, the HCI Skills Gateway Project Manager:

“While we’re only starting to see the long-lasting negative impact of Covid-19 on the Scottish property and construction sector, it’s critical we deliver new ways to support outstanding talent that is otherwise at risk of being lost forever from the industry. These scholarships will help Scottish construction build back better.”

The Housing, Construction & Infrastructure Skills Gateway has £6 million in funding over eight years from the UK and Scottish Government to upskill and accelerate construction careers, addressing skills gaps across the sector and region.

To find out more about HCI Skills Gateway Scholarships, email

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