5-minute briefing: National Careers Week

Dec 6, 2018

What’s your role at EngineeringUK?
I am the Employer Support Manager for the North West of England and North Wales. I work regionally and nationally with companies on their strategic approach to engaging with the next generation of engineers, to make it a sustainable and accountable part of their business plan. I also represent EngineeringUK in the region, keeping on top of key developments, new and planned projects, liaising with Stakeholders and PEIs and looking for opportunities to get companies involved in our products and programmes.

What does it mean to be a NCW Ambassador?
Myself and a colleague coordinate activities and advice for companies and schools about careers advice in the North West, all focusing on a showcase of careers activities and engagement during National Careers Week, 4-8 March 2019. All ambassadors are volunteers on the ground and our role is to support, advise and signpost teachers to resources and information to help them inform their students on local market information, activities, events and information to provide quality careers guidance.

Myself and Rachel, the second NW Ambassador, have also decided to coordinate a competition across the NW for teams of students to research, investigate and showcase a career area of their choice through the creation of a video to their peers.

How does it fit in with your day job?
I do not work with directly with schools in my work but I liaise with lots of educational links and stakeholders when spreading the word about company activities and events: I also see the results of poor careers information and guidance to students when working with companies to address their skills gaps and those across all areas of STEM, so volunteering in this area made sense for my role with EngineeringUK and fuels my passion in this field in which I have worked in for over 15 years.

By addressing poor careers provision, we can educate and encourage the next generation to make informed decisions for their futures: using market information on emerging skills and technologies, skills gaps and career pathways, we can inspire students take control of their lives and become who they want to be, regardless of their gender, ethnic backgrounds, sexuality or social class. Ultimately, this will inspire young people to take control of their future careers and inspire the next generation, including engineers, scientists and technologists, so it very much fits both my personal and EngineeringUK’s missions.

What do you like best about your job?
I really enjoying helping organisations inspire young people. I am a realist and understand there must be something in this for all parties, so making these links, joining passionate people together to work collaboratively and seeing positive outcomes for the companies, and ultimately the young people, is a wonderful feeling.

I also enjoy meeting lots of different people and working on exciting projects which showcase careers in STEM.

What do you look forward to the most about NCW?
I am really looking forward to the National Careers Week itself in March 2019 as there will be an event to showcase employability skills as well as the announcement of the winning team from the competition I mentioned above. It will be great to see so many young people engaging with careers information and really interesting to see how they would showcase careers in that area to their peers.

Do you have any advice for people wanting to take part in NCW?
Get in touch! There are loads of resources on the National Careers Week website and lots of ways to get in touch and share resources, ideas and suggestions. What I would say is have a go, anything is better than nothing and it is all our responsibility to get involved to help the next generation make an informed choice for their futures.

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