Pupils Look to the Future with Exciting Career Opportunities
This term has seen our Careers Engagement Programme offer a plethora of amazing opportunities – from going behind the scenes at Dancing On Ice to taking part in an International Women’s Day seminar.
The National Apprenticeship Show on Wednesday 6 March gave our pupils the opportunity to speak with some of the top UK employers – including Lloyds Bank, Virgin, Unilever, KPMG, Deloitte, Ernst and Young, and Marriott Hotels – offering advanced and degree-level apprenticeship roles. The pupils networked with potential future employers and had the opportunity to attend seminars to learn about the skills, application processes and career paths that apprenticeships can offer, as well as to practice their professional introductions and gather valuable information.
For International Women’s Day on Friday 8 March, we hosted a seminar with three prominent female speakers working on stereotypically ‘masculine’ fields. We were joined by Kellie Larkin, professional footballer (currently midfielder at Lewes FC) and Teacher of PE at Bede’s Prep; Sarra Hawes, Company Director at Hawes Building Ltd; and Haminata Vintu Camara, Graduate Software Engineer at American Express. Each of the women gave inspiring talks covering their backgrounds, anecdotal stories and insights into the barriers that they have faced. The Q&A session lasted for 45 minutes, with the (female and male) pupils asking some incredibly thoughtful questions. This was a fantastic opportunity for the pupils to gain helpful tips and advice when thinking ahead to their own careers, as well as network with some prominent figures in industry.
We plan to host an International Men’s Day seminar in November, which will follow a similar format and highlight unconventional ‘masculine’ careers.
In February, a group of our Lower Sixth pupils interested in studying or working in Law were lucky enough to be invited to Brighton Magistrates Court to observe the court room for an afternoon. Nahje Smith, Lower Sixth, says, “When we arrived, we were met by two Magistrates, Shirley and Alison, who were our guides for the afternoon.
“We first toured an empty Court Room to understand the logistics of how a court operates and we met Sam, a Legal Advisor, who talked to us about her experiences in the Magistrates Court and her career journey. She also helped us understand the different job roles and routes in the legal profession. We took part in a quick-fire quiz from our Magistrates, who also helped us to prepare for our afternoons’ viewing of the proceedings in Court Room One.
“We observed three cases that afternoon from the Public Gallery, with Shirley and Alison running us through what the working Magistrates would be taking into account and why they were asking particular questions in court. They directed us to the relevant parts of the law to help us understand what sentences the Magistrates would be considering. This was an incredible opportunity, as it helped us come to our own decisions about how we thought the cases should be treated. The visit gave us an interesting and realistic insight into what working in the legal profession can be like.”
Our Media pupils have also enjoyed some exciting trips this term: one to the Royal Television Society careers fair at the London Business Design Centre in January, and the other to behind the scenes of Dancing On Ice at the beginning of last month.
Speaking about the Royal Television Society careers fair, Ellie Bostock-Smith, Upper Fifth, says, “This was an exciting opportunity, as we won’t often be given the chance to speak one-on-one with representatives from massive, mainstream post-production and broadcasting companies; for example, BBC, Sky, ITV, Channel 4, UKTV, NBC Universal, IMG Studios and many more. We spoke to them about future employment, which we could explore after A levels or as graduates, and more immediate ways for us to gain access to studios and sets for us to experience the industry.
“We were confident and persistent in how we networked and made professional connections and contacts with everyone we could. After a few hours of discussing work experience and apprenticeship, internship and young talent programmes, we caught a train home. Laden with business cards, email addresses, and free pens, we were all feeling even more encouraged and inspired by the industry, and motivated to pursue what it could offer us.”
Ella Vawer, Upper Fifth, adds “I thought the trip was very inspirational. It helped me realise that I want to go into in the media industry.”
Angel Chen, Lower Sixth, was one of the lucky pupils who visited the production of Dancing On Ice. She says, “This trip this gave us a chance to learn about what happens behind the scene of a live ‘shiny floor’ show. We were able to meet different professionals and understand how they contribute to the live show, including the lighting, technical, direction, social media, hair and makeup departments. This has widened our understanding about how we can get into the industry and the importance of every crew in the whole team.”
Jackson Martin, Lower Sixth, adds, “The trip allowed me to learn more than I expected, plus meeting Wes Nelson and being in Kem’s studio was a real bonus! The people we met on the day gave us invaluable insights into the TV industry and helped me to discover what I would like to do in the future.” Ben Lee, Lower Sixth, is currently looking into behind the scenes crew jobs as a direct result of the trip.
The final week of term saw the annual Careers Fair hosted at Bede’s Senior School, where we were joined by Bede’s pupils and parents as well as pupils from four other local schools.
We welcomed over 70 exhibitors and experts, including employers such as the NHS, Accenture, Lloyds Bank, JP Morgan, Elite Hotels and Drusillas Park. Universities - including Kings College London, Bristol, Warwick, Kent and Sussex - exhibited alongside gap year providers and training organisations. Our Meet the Expert area included representatives from the insurance, medicine, veterinary, STEM and sport industries.
This event is always a fantastic opportunity for pupils to network and as well as gain an insight into Postgraduate study.
If you are interested in inspiring our pupils by delivering a talk or seminar, or exhibiting at next year's Careers Fair, please contact Deborah Franks at firstname.lastname@example.org.