Central Foundation Celebrates National Careers Week
National Careers Week (NCW) is a celebration of careers guidance and education across the UK. The aim is to provide young people with support by having a week that spotlights careers guidance and activities at an important stage in their school career.
During NCW 4th- 8th March 2019, for the first time Central Foundation Girls’ School (CFGS) held its own Careers Fair for students from Year 7 to Year 10 and in the 6th Form. To get the full benefit of the week students received a ‘Careers Journey Booklet’ which armed them with the information, advice and guidance they needed to begin to develop and think about the best career pathway for them.
Over two days students were given access to 15 employers including lawyers, a surgeon, the London Fire Brigade, and even a pilot, as well universities and colleges at the CFGS’s Career Fair. Students were provided with the opportunity to find out first-hand about different companies, jobs and educational courses to enable them to plan and chart their academic and work careers.
Students were excited to learn about the experiences and career journeys of the range of visitors at the Careers Fair. This included a pilot who talked about his childhood dream of becoming a pilot. He was able to realise his dream by gaining work experience with a commercial airline and by taking flying lessons as a young man. This gave him the confidence and further desire to pursue a career as a pilot, which he thoroughly enjoys and finds rewarding. He was able to explain the different career pathways to becoming a pilot, along with the training and qualifications needed.
In addition, students were also treated to inspirational talks by two women who are leaders in their profession. Dr Grainne McLoughlin, Senior Lecturer in Cognitive Neuroscience at King’s College London and a Principal Investigator of IDEAS, spoke to A level Biology students about careers in the NHS and the different pathways available to them. Whilst Melissa Malik, Fulfilment Operations Director at Tesco and Women of the Future Awards finalist in 2015, spoke to Year 10 students about her career journey and also demystified the idea that students have to study a particular subject to hold leadership positions in industry.
Staff also got involved in NCW too. Congratulations to Ms Neal and Ms Morgan on winning the career focused ‘Do Now’ starter lesson competition. Other teachers shared their career profiles in a bunting display around the school. This enabled students to gain insights into staff and teachers’ career journeys.
Careers Week culminated with a Met Police Careers Presentation event that coincided with International Women’s Day. A range of female police personnel gave informational mini biographies of their careers and current role. Students were given the opportunity to ask questions; to talk about the use of police equipment, including handcuffs, truncheons and firearms. Students also had the opportunity to meet and stroke the two police puppies that accompanied them.
Overall, hearing first-hand the wide range of roles and different routes into the Met Police and other careers during National Careers Week widened students’ horizons as to what is possible. The Career Ambassadors that helped with NCW week said:
“I think National Careers Week was an amazing experience and helped give me a sense of direction in what I want to do when I'm older. I think it was very interesting seeing what type of jobs people have and what subjects they studied. Being a Careers Ambassador was an incredible experience to be able to help other students get answers for questions they have due to their future careers.” (Naurin Chowdhury, 10E)
“From this experience I learnt about many career opportunities and pathways, as well as the fact that I was a Careers Ambassador, I helped in assisting Dr Bailey-Morrissey with careers week. It was a pleasure.” (Muyrum Begum, 10A)
Dr Claudette Bailey-Morrissey, Careers Leader said:
“National Careers Week gave us the opportunity to bring together employers, employees, colleges and universities so that our students could ask questions and learn from external providers in order to help them make informed decisions about their own future career pathways and journeys. Speaking with representatives from a range of organisations gave students an insight into the world of work. It was also an excellent introduction for our Key Stage 3 students to speak with visitors and gain an understanding of how what they are learning in different subjects at school can lead to a wide range of careers in the future.”