On Friday 26th February 2016, Year 11 students were invited to the “What Career Live?” show at the National Exhibition Centre (NEC) in Birmingham; “a unique opportunity to discover what options are out there for school leavers, including university, apprenticeships, sponsorship and on-the-job training”. Such visits are a valuable part of the Careers Education programme and it was an inspiring and informative morning for those who took part.
Huxlow’s Careers Education, Information, Advice and Guidance (CEIAG) programme aims to provide students with:
- An opportunity to know their own strengths, potential and weaknesses and develop positive attitudes towards themselves
- An opportunity to develop qualities and skills which will enable them to adjust to and cope with change and transition
- An awareness of training, employment and self-employment opportunities
- An awareness of further and higher education opportunities
- Decision making skills
For Rebecca and Lucy, two Year 11 students who already knew that they wanted to go into hairdressing and animal care respectively, it was a chance to get lots of information about apprenticeships, where to look for vacancies, how to apply, the pay and conditions to expect, etc. They said “I already knew what I wanted to do, but now I know exactly what to do next so it was definitely worth coming. The show was really well organised and everyone was really helpful.”
For other students who were less sure about which career path to follow, there were representatives from a huge range of industries and employers on hand to offer advice. The ‘Creative Hub’ covered all careers in advertising, creative or digital media, ‘Get Into Film’ were giving advice on working in entertainment and gaming, ‘Buskers Corner’ featured live music and the chance to talk to representatives from all sectors of the music industry. The automotive industry was well represented with Rolls-Royce, Jaguar and Mercedes. The armed forces each had a stand and were able to answer lots of questions for some of our students.
As well as being able to talk to the exhibitors, students had access to a huge range of careers planning opportunities including
- a Mock Assessment Centre to prepare students for the assessment centres that many UK firms now use in their recruitment process
- a Careers Theatre with various speakers throughout the day, including an eye-opening talk about the huge range of roles available to those who choose a career in health services
- a University Theatre featuring speakers from many different universities, including one about unique degrees in the football, sport and event industry
- a CV clinic where experienced recruiters were on hand to scrutinise students CVs and give them hints and tips on how to get noticed
- the job matching zone where students used an online program to answer questions about their strengths and weaknesses, which were then matched to suitable jobs and career paths.