01 Aug 2023

Human interest North West Utility

Power network operator welcomes intern as part of national programme

Pracious Nkume, centre, with Thomas Sims and Amy Jones

The North West’s power network operator has welcomed its first intern from a programme designed to offer paid work experience to black graduates.

Pracious Nkume joined Electricity North West last month as part of the 10,000 Black Intern programme.

The programme launched back in 2020 and seeks to offer 2,000 internships each year for five consecutive years.

Electricity North West committed to the programme earlier this year as it continues to build diversity across the business.

Rachael Parr, Electricity North West’s people and corporate services director, said: “Across the UK the utilities industry lags behind other sectors in terms of diversity and needs to do more.   

“As a business we always want to do better and that’s why we’ve set ambitious targets to improve diversity over the next five years.

“The 10,000 Black Intern programme is an excellent initiative of which we’re proud to be a part of and we plan to take on more interns through the programme in the future.

“Over the next five years, we’re committed to upskilling and investing in our workforce and by 2028, we’ll be creating 600 green jobs and enhancing the diversity of our current workforce.”

Pracious joined Electricity North West’s accommodation team, who oversee the running of the depots and offices across the region.

Since being part of the team, Pracious has helped carry out energy audits, lighting and energy consumption trends reviews whilst she has also been a part of group vulnerability group engagement.

“The idea of gaining experience within the industry really excited me and I was delighted to be given an opportunity to learn with a hands-on approach,” Pracious added.

“Before joining, I didn’t realise how big Electricity North West were and how many differing roles they have across the business. I’ve managed to gain experience in a range of different topics including contributing to the huge renovation at the Preston site.

“The 10,000 Black Intern programme holds significant value and has been great at actively promoting diversity and inclusion; I couldn’t recommend it highly enough.”