“I believe in providing young people with the skills needed to succeed” – Adult learner helps tackle unemployment in Keighley
Raaj Ray has lived and worked in Keighley for many years, and has always been keen to raise the aspirations of young people in the area.
Driven by the desire to boost opportunities for young people, he returned to college in his forties to equip him with the skills to set up his own security business, Raaj CCTV.
An informed decision
Raaj spent many years working within the fire, CCTV and intruder alarm industry. Keen to develop his skills for his professional development, he got in touch with Keighley College.
“I chose Keighley College because of its openness to show me the workshops and training areas before signing up. The college was really accommodating, allowing me to see where I would be learning and meet the tutors.
“At the age of 45, I wanted to be sure that I was making the right decision. The college appreciated this, and showed me the past results for the course, giving me the confidence to join the Electrical Installation Level 2 course.”
Motivated to progress
After two years at college, Raaj is continuing his academic journey by progressing onto the Electrical Installation City and Guilds Level 3 qualification.
“I chose to return to college for a third year due to my outstanding tutors; they’re extremely knowledgeable, polite and have provided me with fantastic pre-exam support and revision tips.
“Coming back to college as a mature student was enjoyable; I felt confident in my learning ability. Since returning, I’ve gained knowledge on electrical cables and installation techniques.
“Although it was difficult attending college during evenings after a twelve hour day at work, I knew my tutors really cared about my success and this motivated me to continue learning.”
Being his own boss
Dedicated to creating an honest business which protects the community, Raaj set up his CCTV business in 2015.
“I have always aspired to be my own boss; giving me the freedom to create my own strategy and business plan. As managing director, I’m responsible for managing the business, providing customers with quotes and installing CCTV and alarms in homes and businesses across West Yorkshire.
“My future ambition is to grow Raaj CCTV into a national brand, supported by a large team of installers with their own vans working for regional offices.”
Opportunity for younger generation
Given the effect the pandemic has had on young people seeking employment, Raaj is motivated to create exciting new opportunities for young adults in the area.
“I believe in providing young people with the skills that will help them become better engineers. So far, I’ve worked with three Electrical Installation Level 2 students from Keighley College; their enthusiasm and commitment to developing new skills has been admirable.
“One of these students works with me as an apprentice which has been incredibly rewarding, and I look forward to employing more apprentices in the future.”