Glasgow pupils prepare for job success with Career Ready
Secondary school students from across Glasgow were joined by business leaders at Glasgow City Chambers on Wednesday, September 30, as they prepared to begin the exciting two-year Career Ready programme.
The 136 students, from 23 schools across the city, met with mentors from a range of industries who will support them in the lead-up to paid internships in the summer between fifth and sixth years.
The Glasgow programme, run by charity Career Ready in partnership with Glasgow City Council and employers from across the city, will provide the youngsters with valuable work experience, and help them to uncover their strengths and talents while exploring career pathways that inspire them.
The 300-strong audience was addressed by Simone Lockhart, recently-appointed Chair of Career Ready’s Local Advisory Board for Glasgow and MD of Glasgow-headquartered recruitment firm Search Consultancy. She is also amongst the business leaders who will mentor a student for the duration of the programme, with all youngsters matched with companies based on their career aspirations and hobbies/interests.
Simone said: “It was an honour to welcome the students and mentors to the 2015 programme launch which was a huge success, and marks the beginning of an exciting two year journey for students as they prepare for the world of work.
“Search Consultancy was one of the vast array of businesses to be matched with mentees, with three Glasgow students set to join us during the coming programme. We very much look forward to working with them to help them realise their true potential, gain confidence and be inspired.”
Since its establishment in 2011, Career Ready has gone from strength to strength and seen tremendous growth. The charity began working with two local authorities and 56 pupils from across eight schools - and in just four years has gone on to forge partnerships with nine local authorities and 865 pupils from 86 secondary schools.
Its programmes are delivered by more than 150 employers and 1,500 volunteers, and help employers and schools to deliver Scotland’s ‘Developing the Young Workforce’ recommendations.
Anne Wexelstein, Career Ready Director for Scotland, spoke of the significance of Glasgow’s participation in the programme and the charity’s long-term aspirations.
She said: “Glasgow was one of the first areas to adopt Career Ready. Support for the programme has continued to grow among both schools and employers over the past four years as we focus on giving young people with little family background of higher education or professional careers the confidence, skills and networks to achieve life-long success at work.
“The truly inspiring stories about the positive, personal impact Career Ready has had on young people here and elsewhere in Scotland show the real difference closer ties between business and education can make. It’s also a two-way street. There are practical benefits for businesses in developing a pipeline of skilled future employees by engaging their current employees in changing the life chances of the young people in their communities.
“Our ambition is to extend our reach in Scotland through continuous development of our programme, partnerships, content and practices, to set young people on the path to job and career success, allowing them to contribute their talents and skills to the country’s economic success.”
The next step for the Glasgow pupils will be meeting with their mentors at their schools, accompanied by their parents/guardians, where they will begin making plans to visit their allocated mentor’s workplace.
Mentors will assist the youngsters in identifying their post school job and career goals, giving them a chance to develop their aspirations and strengths, so they can be matched to the right job within their allocated workplace.
Throughout the two year programme, students will later have the chance to undertake ‘Get Ready for Work’ masterclasses before being invited for interview and beginning their internships.
Amongst the students getting set to take part is Shawlands Academy pupil Maria Sarwar, 15, who will be mentored by Simone Lockhart.
She said: “Since getting the chance to be involved in the programme I have been excited to see what’s ahead and it was great to see my mentor. I have already had the chance to undertake a masterclass and it has been really useful.”
Abigail Kinsella, Employment and Skills Partnership Team Principal Officer at Glasgow City Council Education Services, said: “Glasgow City Council is delighted to launch its continued partnership with Career Ready UK during 2015-16. The initiative will support 136 S5 and S6 senior phase school pupils to actively engage with business leaders from a wide range of industry sectors.
“By participating in Career Ready activities young people from 23 of Glasgow’s mainstream secondary schools will develop vital employability skills and relevant workplace experiences. “Career Ready facilitates valuable professional networks of support and encouragement for our young learners, which has proven to help participants to become confident employees after school, college or university study.”