Give young people a meaningful taste of the Built Environment

AEC Work Experience Made Easy

Done-for-you programmes for the office or online


Want to attract young people into Architecture, Engineering & Construction careers?

Invite them to learn from the best in the business.
Give them a work experience like no other!

OPTION 1: AEC Virtual Work Experience (VWEx)

Our accredited Virtual Work Experience programme provides students with a unique opportunity to complete a work experience placement whether they are based at home or in school.

Young student creating digital road design using Bentley System Software

Get them work-ready

Help them develop key knowledge and employability, technical and business skills required for a professional career in architecture, engineering and construction.

AEC Professional Presentation

Get them discovering

Working with your Architecture, Engineering and Construction professionals they will learn how to tackle challenges to develop people and planet-friendly designs.

Get them creating

They’ll create a digital OR paper-based portfolio that comes with an accredited award – great for CVs and something to show a prospective employer!

DEC School logo

Get them engaging

Structured week of interactive activity via our DEC School online platform, accessed by mobile phone, computer, laptop or tablet.

Work hasn’t stopped, so why should work experience?

2020 will be remembered as the year the world stayed home. That included the exciting STEM-focused “AEC” industry (that’s Architecture, Engineering and Construction).

Thousands of young people were unable to access a work experience opportunity to explore the ‘real world of work’ and start building their CVs.

Thanks to the support of leading Universities and AEC companies, and access to some of their amazing real-life projects, Class Of Your Own (creator of DEC) was one of the first organisations to design and deliver virtual work experience programmes during lockdown.

It proved to be relevant and inspirational and also presented an equal opportunity* to those without access to computers at home.

Class Of Your Own offers students access to a high-quality experience using a combination of engaging short films, presentations and live discussions, all presented on our ‘DEC School’ learning platform. Now the world is opening up, professionals can also get back to supporting in the classroom.

Students develop the key knowledge and employability, technical and business skills required for a career in architecture, engineering and construction.

They produce a portfolio of work (guided by our helpful template) including a design scheme and digital model using any software or gaming programme they are familiar with. They can also make a scale physical model using paper and recycled materials for their model (cardboard, yoghurt pots…think Blue Peter!).

*National surveys carried out by Ofcom and numerous others discovered that mobile phone ownership is “almost universal” once children are in secondary school and that smartphones are more popular than a computer for going online. COYO is known for the introduction of digital processes in its ‘Design Engineer Construct!’ Learning Programme delivered in secondary schools, but worked closely with schools to ensure that home-learners could dial in safely to mobile conferencing platforms to access professional support. They were also able to present paper-based outcomes to evidence set tasks where necessary. A report from St. Joseph’s Catholic College, Swindon outlines such support.

OPTION 2: AEC Office-based Work Experience

Our five day off-the-shelf programme is designed to help an employer deliver a worthwhile week of work experience in the office. Select one of our DEC Awards as the context for the week.

The ‘Work Experience Made Easy’ comprehensive programme framework provides structured guidance for each day. Exercises help students identify their strengths and discover more about a range of technical and professional career paths. Active tasks maintain student interest when meeting staff or work shadowing.

DEC CONNECT AWARDS are entry-level design challenges for learners with little to no experience of the Built Environment – typically, but not exclusively, up to 16 years of age.

DEC EXTEND AWARDS are progressive design challenges for learners with some experience of the Built Environment – typically, but not exclusively, up to 16 years of age.

COYO Work Experience - Home for Everyone
COYO Work Experience - Design a Restaurant
COYO Work Experience - Design a Riverside Facility
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COYO Work Experience - Design an Underground Hotel
COYO Work Experience - Design Student Accommodation

Off the shelf or made-to-measure, we can tailor your work experience to suit your business


AEC Work Experience Guide

This definitive guide is designed to make it as easy as possible for you to provide AEC work experience placements.

Adopted by the UK Government Department for Work and Pensions, it ensures employers meet their obligations in providing work experience placements for young people.