Hands-on careers advice inspires youngsters

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Around 650 pupils from East Suffolk schools took part in hands-on work experience sessions to learn about different career options.

Children from local primary schools (Years 5 and 6) along with secondary school and Sixth Form students took part in three separate programmes which combined hands-on activities with innovative learning styles; Eyes On, Game Anglia and the Cefas Masterclass.

The Eyes On programme has been developed by New Anglia Enterprise Coordinator Luke Uttley and Cheryl Willis an Enterprise Adviser with the New Anglia Enterprise Adviser Network.  The programme offers Year 5 and 6 pupils an opportunity to learn more specific career sectors such as catering, engineering, construction, renewable energy, creative media design and maths-linked outdoor pursuits.

East Suffolk Council, together with The New Anglia Enterprise Adviser Network, East Coast Collage, Game Anglia and Cefas, is committed to providing young people with opportunities to learn and practice new skills, in order to help develop a vibrant post-16 skills system which is closely aligned to the current and future economy.

In Game Anglia workshops, children were able to create their own game using the coding programme Scratch, build their own add-ons and joysticks and were able to ask questions directly to industry professionals. Many of the students expressed an interest in coding as a future career.

A catering workshop, delivered by East Coast College and hosted at Dell Primary School, saw the pupils making pancakes, sampling exotic fruit and making napkin shapes for silver service. Pupils at Ringsfield Primary designed and raced their own electric cars whilst 65 pupils from Red Oak Primary School learned about the construction trade. The workshops were led by Permission Homes, who supplied materials to enable the children to construct ready-made homes.

A Cefas Masterclass took place with 25 students from Lowestoft Sixth Form College, Sir John Leman Sixth Form and Bungay High School Sixth Form working with marine biologists from Cefas.

The students took part in 4 workshops, learning about fish dissection, plankton and toxins in shellfish, fish tags and marine artefacts. They were also able to listen to a number of young Cefas scientists talk passionately about their work.

Luke Uttley, Enterprise Coordinator from the New Anglia Enterprise Adviser Network, said: “Connecting an Enterprise Adviser from local businesses directly with schools means that we can develop exciting new opportunities for young people to learn about different careers and workplace skills. It’s been great to see so many pupils learning about some of the fantastic industries open to them locally.”

Enterprise Adviser Cheryl Willis said: “Being able to offer students these types of innovative employer engagement activities which support curriculum learning has been a really rewarding experience.”

The New Anglia Enterprise Adviser Network recruits senior business leaders to work voluntarily with secondary schools and colleges. Enterprise Advisers work strategically with senior leaders in schools and colleges, supporting them to develop and enhance their business engagement plans.

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