I had the privilege of spending the day with business and engineering students at Strode College in Street as part of their Employer Ready Event.
The idea of the day was to, firstly, introduce students to the world of employment in a very practical way by spending time with business people and, secondly, to get feedback on what business people thought was important to cover in the new T level qualifications.
In case you are not aware of the T level qualifications, they are designed to run parallel to A levels but offer a more ‘technical’ and practical form of qualification – generally with some form of placement built in.
Companies have often complained that youngsters do not have the skills they need to be productive employees from the outset. So the T levels are a proposed answer to this complaint.
Strode is also very involved in offering apprentiships – which as we all know are a great way of offering on the job training.
The first part of the day was working with 16-17 year old business and engineering students on a project exploring how they might go about making Strode a carbon neutral college. What were the things that needed to be concidered and where would they start?
Although there were some students who were more engaged than others – by the end of the session everyone was taking part in presenting the solutions they had come up with.
The afternoon was spent talking to the degree level students (I had no idea that Strode was linked with Plymouth university and offering degrees) and these more mature students were very focussed and clear on what they wanted from their future careers.
We then had a discussion on the T level business qualifications and what we felt were the modules that would be most important to businesses.
All in all I found the day to be a very positive experience and I was glad to be able to offer some insight into the business perspective.
If you have the opportunity to be involved in something similar I would urge you to take it!