It’s fair to say that day-to-day schooling has been impacted significantly during the past year; not only in terms of pupils’ general learning, but also the extracurricular activities that support broader personal development. One of the key moments for GCSE pupils is the exposure to the world of work, through placements and career development events.
At Aldermore Group, we’ve been keen to explore ways in which we can play our part in supporting local education initiatives in areas around our Cardiff, Manchester, Reading and London hubs. This is a core part of our ‘talent and early careers’ strategy, building relationships and offering insight into the diverse and rewarding careers available within financial services.
As part of this, we recently partnered with Bridge GM, a team within the Greater Manchester Combined Authority. They work with secondary schools and colleges within Greater Manchester, helping them strategically plan and develop their careers provision.
Sophie Hallworth, Enterprise Coordinator for Salford & Greater Manchester Combined Authority, explains how our partnership has already started to show results:
“Bridge GM met with Aldermore as they saw an ask for employers to support a local school in Manchester with their workplace experiences. Aldermore worked in collaboration with the careers lead at Abraham Moss Community School to tailor a specific career programme and workshop for their Year 10 students. It was hugely successful and gave students a valuable encounter with an employer and a sector many may not have considered a career in before. The Bridge GM team look forward to working with Aldermore again and building on this successful partnership in the future.”
Jonny Carberry, Aldermore’s Talent and Early Years Partner, who led the partnership work with Bridge GM, said:
“We take the responsibility of financial education seriously and are keen grow young peoples’ understanding of the financial services industry. For this event, we were able to provide pupils with an insight into our organisation and our purpose – ‘Backing people to fulfil life’s hopes and dreams.’ We were also able to invite colleagues from different areas of the business to share their career stories, including the successes and challenges they faced along the way. The day concluded with the class pitching business start-up ideas to a panel of our senior leaders – our very own ‘dragons’ den’! The pupils did a fantastic job; it was great to see their enthusiasm and creativity during the task and was a privilege to be a part of.”
Kathy Ashworth, Careers Advisor at Abraham Moss Community School, reiterates the importance and value these events can have:
“Unfortunately, Covid-19 has meant that our young people have missed out on a lot since March 2020, including work experience. The experience of work and time with employers is really important and allows them to build lots of skills, so I didn’t want pupils to miss out. I contacted Aldermore to help me develop a ‘virtual work experience day’ for Year 10. They were really receptive to my ideas and created an engaging event for pupils which fit in perfectly with our plan and school day. Our pupils enjoyed it and gained a lot from interacting directly with an employer, learning about careers within financial services, but also developing general work-related skills. The ‘dragons’ den’ activity went down particularly well.”
So, if you see a self-deodorising shoe or electric car powered from road sensors coming to market in the future, it may well be the genesis of the idea borne in the classroom!