Students in Forth Valley recently celebrated embarking on their path to success as the 2018 Career Ready programme launched.
Keith Brown MSP joined 67 eager S5 pupils from 13 secondary schools as they took a major step towards employment with the two-year programme, chiefly funded by Diageo, with support from Ceteris and Clackmannanshire, Stirling and Falkirk Councils.
Designed to complement students’ studies and bridge the gap between education and the world of work, the 2018 one-to-one programme intake saw young people paired with individual mentors from 21 different organisations, spanning a range of sectors including manufacturing, financial services, engineering, digital, construction, third & public sector.
Keith Brown MSP said: “I was delighted to be asked along to the start of the 2018 Career Ready programme which will provide the students involved with the invaluable opportunity to develop skills and confidence, and gain real work experience.
“I would like to thank the 21 organisations who support the programme – including UCP, Diageo, Ceteris and O-I Manufacturing to name just a few – for without them it wouldn’t be such a huge success.
“I wish all the young people involved the best of luck for the coming months and would encourage them to make the most of this opportunity.”
In partnership with schools and head teachers from around Scotland, the pioneering Career Ready got underway in Forth Valley for the first time in 2016 with just 10 students from two schools in the area – all of whom successfully graduated from the programme earlier this year.
Now with 37 of the 2017 Forth Valley programme participants in their 2nd year of Career Ready, and 67 S5 students just starting the 2018 programme, there are over 100 Forth Valley school students participating on the Career Ready programme during the Year of Young People.
Margaret Mary Rafferty, Ceteris’ Managing Director, added, “We’re working with Career Ready and Forth Valley Developing the Young Workforce, to help, wherever we can, to prepare young people for work and this programme gives them an insight into the workplace and opens up their ideas to the vast number of potential jobs that are available. I’m proud to say that we’ve supported Career Ready in Forth Valley since the beginning and I know that the students get a real benefit from our involvement. Our mentors are also enjoying the whole process and I would hope that Ceteris can continue to participate in the years to come.
Stephen Pritchard, Director of Brand Change and Engineering at Diageo, said: “The Career Ready programme aims to give young people across Scotland the skills, knowledge and attitudes they need to succeed in their future careers. Giving them access to real experience through mentoring, masterclasses and an internship is invaluable in their career development.
“The Scottish Government and Scottish Parliament are significant supporters of the programme so it was great to welcome Keith Brown to the 2018 launch in Forth Valley so he could see first-hand how we’re helping to upskill students and prepare them for the future.”
Anne Wexelstein, Director for Scotland, Career Ready added: “We would like to thank our network of employer supporters who continue to provide fantastic support and make the Career Ready programme possible in Clackmannanshire, Stirling and Falkirk. We are delighted to have new employers here at the launch event, with mentors meeting their students for the first time.
“All of them play a crucial role in boosting social mobility across the three local authority areas. They help their student to make choices about their future careers and build their confidence to make career decisions and plans for themselves.”
Across Scotland there are 1,300 young people currently enrolled on the programme and being supported by over 300 organisations and more than 2,700 volunteers. Everyone who participates gets something from the experience. When Career Ready asked mentors across Scotland whose students have just finished the programme to rate their mentoring skills at the start of the programme, 42% said they were good or excellent. By the end of the programme 91% reported their skills were good or excellent. 88% of people who supervised students on their internship this year said the student added real value to their team. Gains all round.
About Career Ready
Career Ready is a national charity, that links employers with schools to open up the world of work to young people aged 15/16 – 18, transforming their aspirations and life chances. They give students with potential from lower income families, and at risk of under performing and under attaining, the confidence, skills and knowledge to achieve their potential. We have a strong social mobility focus.
Since 2011, their schools focused strategy in Scotland has experienced tremendous growth with a positive impact for all stakeholders within the complex network of relationships that they manage. From two Local Authorities, 8 schools and 56 students in 2011, they are now working with 13 Local Authorities – Aberdeen, Aberdeenshire, Clackmannanshire, Dundee (new in 2018), Edinburgh, Falkirk, Fife, Glasgow, Midlothian, Moray, Perth & Kinross, Stirling and West Lothian – in 126 of their secondary schools and supporting 1300 students. In each of these areas they are a valued and important contributor to the Developing the Young Workforce Regional Groups KPIs, Closing the Attainment Gap and the Fair Access agendas.