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September 2023

Samantha Hodgson, A Rising Star at Cubby Construction

In the world of construction, Samantha Hodgson, often known as Sam, has already left an indelible mark in just over a year. With her roles as a Trainee Contracts Manager and Trainee Project Manager at Cubby Construction, Sam’s journey is nothing short of inspiring. In this blog post, we delve into her remarkable career and the lessons she’s learned along the way.

Getting Started: Building a Strong Foundation

Sam embarked on her journey at Cubby Construction in September 2022. Her initial role was in the Pre-Contracts department, where she gained invaluable insights into the construction industry’s intricacies. Working closely with the likes of Dan Cleminson, Bob Sly, and Garry Graham, Sam learned the ropes of the tender submission process. This included site visits, subcontractor and material inquiries, and ensuring that tenders met clients’ deadlines. Additionally, Sam gained proficiency in using construction software, specifically Causeway, which plays a vital role in estimating costs for projects.

Dan Cleminson, Estimating Manager, recalled Sam’s rapid adaptation and eagerness to embrace new challenges. By the time she moved on from the Pre-Contracts department, Sam had already secured a project she surveyed, priced, and programmed herself.

Expanding Her Horizons: A Journey into Project Management

Sam’s thirst for knowledge led her to the Contracts Team, where she dove headfirst into the role of a Trainee Project Manager. This transition allowed her to gain hands-on experience alongside Contracts Managers and Site Managers. One of the most exciting aspects of her job is traveling to various project sites, each offering unique challenges and insights. Sam’s age didn’t deter her; she’s treated as an equal and respected for her enthusiasm and willingness to learn.

Colin Graham, a Contracts Manager at Cubby, lauded Sam’s ability to adapt to different roles within the construction sector. She’s confident in tackling diverse responsibilities, whether as a Project Manager, Quantity Surveyor, or Estimator.

Keith Hetherington, Site Foreman, highlighted Sam’s ability to communicate professionally with clients, her inquisitiveness, and her willingness to learn about various aspects of the construction industry.

Academic Pursuits and Professional Development

Sam is not just a hands-on learner; she’s committed to her academic growth. She’s currently pursuing a degree in Construction Management through the University of Estate Management. This flexible, remote course aligns well with her work schedule at Cubby, allowing her to work from home one day a week.

In addition to her degree program, Sam has also completed her training as a Temporary Works Coordinator and acquired the Construction Skills Site Management Safety Training Scheme (SMSTS) accreditation. These qualifications reflect her dedication to honing her skills in the construction industry.

Beyond the Construction Site

Sam is not only a dedicated professional but also an active participant in various industry groups. She’s part of CECA NW Foundations, a group aimed at connecting newcomers to the construction industry. Sam values the opportunity to interact with industry peers from different areas, learning from seminars and building relationships with others who share her passion for construction.

Her journey also challenges gender-specific stereotypes in construction, inspiring other women to pursue careers in engineering and construction. Sam’s enthusiasm for the industry and her commitment to every task are infectious, making her a role model to her peers.

A Multifaceted Life

Outside of work, Sam’s roots on a farm have instilled a strong work ethic. Her family’s support and her grandmother’s encouragement led her to take on a traineeship at Cubby. She also finds time for her love of horse training, a hobby that taught her about confidence, determination, and teamwork, skills she readily applies in her professional life.

A Trailblazer and Achiever

Sam’s impressive journey from trainee to aspiring project manager showcases what can be achieved with determination and passion. Her experiences offer valuable insights for anyone considering a career in construction or project management. In her own words, she believes that sticking with it and being eager to learn, while embracing mistakes, are the keys to success in the construction industry.

As Sam continues to grow in her roles at Cubby Construction, her dedication and curiosity are sure to pave the way for more exciting accomplishments in the years ahead. Sam envisions herself as a qualified professional, seeing projects from start to finish and sharing her knowledge with the next generation of construction enthusiasts. She is living proof that ambition and hard work are the foundation of a promising career in any field.

Q&A with Sam

How did you hear about the role at Cubby Construction?

“After completing my A levels, I decided I didn’t want to go to university full time so began looking for apprenticeships in the area, which was hard to find any available. I wanted to work in construction, mainly because I wanted to do something different and, coming from a farming background, I wanted to do something similar… Only qualified project managers and QS vacancies were advertised on the website, so I applied for the apprentice business administrator, hoping to get my foot in the door and, if I had the chance, explain how I wanted to do more on the field/practical side of construction. After one interview with Katina and Natasha, I had a second interview with Tommy to discuss what I wished to do, which was project management, and how I wanted to further my knowledge through gaining a degree at the same time as working, as going to uni full time didn’t appeal to me, and I did want to start work.”

What are the benefits you’ve discovered about working at Cubby that you weren’t aware of when you started?

“The responsibility you are given and the freedom too. You are given opportunities here at Cubby, especially if you are willing to learn and rise to the challenge. Again, opportunities to meet different people, without realizing, pushing yourself out of the comfort zone really makes you more of a confident person.”

What advice would you give a job seeker/young person about applying for a role with Cubby Construction Ltd?

“If you have just left school, for example A-level, and you don’t have a degree in a specific role, such as Quantity Surveying, still give it a go, send in your CV, etc., and really sell yourself in the interview, as first impressions count. Be willing to learn, and an opportunity of Cubby taking you on as a trainee and training you may be an option.”

What attracted you to the role at Cubby?

“Being a local company near me, I wanted to work for a company that I could have a sense of pride working for. The fact that Cubby also does a lot of different, interesting, and even bespoke projects drew me in. I wanted to be able to work on interesting projects in the future, not just housing, which was my initial route but decided against it.”

Where do you see yourself in the next 3-5 years?

“Hopefully qualified, and seeing projects start to finish, building relationships with clients and subcontractors that I may be working with in the future to complement and assist future projects going forward. Hopefully, I will have a lot more knowledge of the construction industry, although you learn something new every day, experience is definitely the key in construction, and you can only get that if you stick with it and are keen to learn and learn from mistakes. I would also like to, once qualified and with more knowledge, hopefully train other people that are interested in my career path for themselves.”