A group of sixth form students from Cardinal Pole Catholic School took part in a speed networking event last week, where they met with employers and training providers offering a range of apprenticeship and school leaver programmes.
The event was part of our Earn & Learn programme, which aims to increase students’ awareness of the different paths they can take after they finish their education. Many young people in Hackney don’t know what alternatives to university are available, nor how to access them, so Inspire! – funded by Hackney Council’s Community Grants scheme – created Earn & Learn to help fill this knowledge gap among local students.
Earn & Learn, running until March 2016, is supporting students in three Hackney schools: Haggerston School and Clapton Girls’ Academy are also taking part in the programme. Careers Carousel networking events like this one are proving to be a great tool to get students thinking about their career paths. One Cardinal Pole sixth former told us that the most useful aspect of the day was the variety of subjects and sectors represented, and another commented that meeting one employer “made me think about doing apprenticeships”.
Of course, we were only able to introduce Cardinal Pole’s students to such a diverse group of employers and training providers thanks to our brilliant volunteers, representing organisations including Step Forward, Willmott Dixon, London Youth, Interserve, View Training, Hackney Community College, Microsoft, Fit for Sport and QA Apprenticeships. By discussing what their organisations can offer school leavers, they were able to open the young people’s eyes to a range of alternatives to university. As one volunteer told us, “quite a few weren’t aware of the other avenues and were very responsive”.
Secondary Programme Manager, Lauren Thomas, commented that “these Careers Carousels are a key element of our Earn & Learn programme, providing young people with information and options at a crucial time in their education. Feedback from students and volunteers has been fantastic, and the whole Secondary Team is looking forward to working closely with students from all three schools over the coming months, helping them to make important decisions about their futures”.
For more information about the work of our Secondary team, visit our Secondary Programmes page.