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Inspire! helps 500 Camden students find work experience

Inspire! is increasing its presence in Camden after securing a contract from the Camden Partnership for Educational Excellence to work with local secondary schools. Part of the contract includes the provision and management of work experience for over 500 students from Haverstock, William Ellis and Parliament Hill schools.

The students went out on placement during June and July. One Haverstock student went to the Royal Society for Tropical Medicine and Hygiene where he impressed with his skills and attitude. He was kept busy with administration and database work, undertaking some research and even attending one of the Society’s scientific conferences.

Gerri McHugh, the Society’s Chief Executive said: “He has been a delight. He chatted to delegates at our conference and his interpersonal skills were excellent.

“It’s a really good thing for us to offer this (placement) as an employer. We can always do with some extra help and it’s quite easy for us to find meaningful work for the student to do. For us, it’s a win win.”

Parliament Hill School’s Jade Sghaier spent a week with MCM Architecture. “Jade was already familiar with Photoshop and InDesign, two of the packages we use here, so it meant we were able to put on her on ‘live’ projects right away,” said Ellen Redmayne-Smith, MCM’s Office/Facilities Manager. “I can’t praise her skills and her application highly enough.”

“I’ve really enjoyed it. I like a lot of stuff. I like having my own desk and the responsibility. It has made me feel grown-up,” Jade said, admitting also that the experience will make her work harder at school next term.

Cllr Angela Mason, Interim Chair of the Camden Partnership for Educational Excellence, said: “Work experience is a vital part of every young person’s education.

“Our partnership with Inspire! offers students at participating schools the opportunity to take up some fantastic placements with local businesses and organisations, gain a taste of the world of work and develop their employability skills.”

In addition to work experience, Inspire! has also delivered several  work-relating learning workshops at Parliament Hill School, including a visit to Standard Chartered Bank  to demonstrate the careers available within a large City business. Activities have also taken place with volunteers from Royal Free Hospital, Transport for London and London Ambulance Service.

David Blagbrough, Director of Inspire! said: “Inspire! was founded in Hackney nearly 10 years ago and we are very proud of what we have achieved in that time in our home borough. Our presence in Camden started with us being approached by one school that knew of our work and to have now expanded that into a formal contract with Camden Partnership for Educational Excellence, that sees us work in partnership with the Camden Business Board is most gratifying and a testament to the hard work of the Inspire! staff. We look forward to delivering work-related learning activities to more Camden schools over the next academic year.”