Transforming futures: Doncaster Careers Week sets new standards for careers education in Doncaster

Opportunities Doncaster held the first Doncaster Careers Week from 10-14 February. The aim of careers week is to raise aspirations and awareness of career pathways and options in a borough where 3.1% of 16-17 year olds are classified as not in education, employment or training (NEET), against a national average of 2.6%.

Opportunities Doncaster held the first Doncaster Careers Week from 10-14 February. The aim of careers week is to raise aspirations and awareness of career pathways and options in a borough where 3.1% of 16-17 year olds are classified as not in education, employment or training (NEET), against a national average of 2.6%.

Research shows that young adults who have greater levels of contact with employers whilst at school are significantly less likely to become NEET and can expect, when in full-time employment, to earn up to 18% more than peers who had no such workplace exposure.

During Doncaster Careers Week, over 6,500 students from primary and secondary schools across Doncaster took part in careers lessons and assemblies, joined live webinars with key employers in Doncaster and attended business showcase days, where local organisations across a number of Doncaster’s most in-demand industries opened their doors to showcase what it’s really like to work there. 

Age UK Doncaster, Boxes and Packaging and Cementation Skanska held open evenings for students to meet employees across the business and discover local career opportunities.

Stacey Austin, Regional Managing Director for Boxes and Packaging said:

“We were proud to host an introduction to manufacturing open evening as we believe it’s beneficial to give students and parents the opportunity to have meaningful encounters in a workplace. It's a great opportunity for the students to meet a range of employees, from apprentices to directors, and hear about the different careers routes open to them in manufacturing.

The future of the town looks prosperous as investment and new ventures continue and it is important, for businesses and communities alike, that we make our young people aware of the work and careers available in their home town.”

More than 140 businesses joined in the celebrations over the course of the week, including those from the creative, cultural and sports sectors. Cast created daily 30 second careers countdowns on Twitter to offer an insight into their professional roles, and published blog posts sharing experiences of the interesting and exciting careers available in the industry. Lindsy James, Director for Active Fusion offered advice for young people interested in pursuing opportunities in sport in Doncaster.

The week culminated in Opportunities Doncaster LIVE, where 3,814 students attended Doncaster Racecourse and met over 100 exhibitors ranging from local SMEs to national businesses such as Polypipe.

The careers event is the largest of its kind held in the borough. Sector-specific exhibitor ‘zones’ helped to guide the experience for students, with interactive exhibits and activities that offered a valuable insight into what it is like to work in different sectors. In an effort to capture students’ interest, exhibitors prepared interactive activities, competitions and even held silent disco-style careers talks from leading industry professionals. 

Sue Beddows, Careers Advisor at Trinity Academy, said: “Today is really important because it gives the students an insight on what is actually available out there for once they leave school.

“Some of our students came to this event last year and it changed their minds about what their options were and gave others a focus and direction.”

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Posted: 25 Feb, 2020

Transforming futures: Doncaster Careers Week sets new standards for careers education in Doncaster