Earlier this year we were asked by Anna Bell, who volunteers as an Enterprise Advisor at the Bay Leadership Academy in Morecambe if we would come in and talk to their Year 9 students. We offer work experience opportunities but this would be our first time speaking to an entire year group.
Since the creation of the Gatsby Benchmarks, schools and colleges are being encouraged to create more meaningful engagements with employers and embed careers education across the curriculum. The Gatsby Benchmarks are a framework of 8 guidelines that define the best careers provision in schools and colleges. Find out more on The Careers and Enterprise Company website.
We had 1 hour with the students and working alongside Anna, we chose to give a short talk followed by an activity. John Lyon, our Managing Director was first up, taking the time to tell the students who we are, how we help our clients and the different roles we have in our head office in Lancaster.
Next to talk was Ryan Worrall, a senior accountant at ICS who just so happens to be a former student of the school. Ryan spoke about his role at ICS, his biggest challenge and his best moment to date since leaving school. It takes guts to stand up in front of a group of over 100 teenagers and we really appreciate Ryan doing this. The students clearly did too as a number went over to thank him afterwards!
It was a quick move from the lecture theatre to the canteen where we’d set up a group activity. Working in groups of 8, the students were given a set of colour-coded questions to answer about ICS and self-employment in general. There were clues around the room and we also tested their listening skills by purposely asking questions that John and Ryan had answered in their talks.
The group that answered their questions first came up to ring the bell, shared their answers with the rest of the room [and bagged a box of chocolates]. Questions included;
What is an SME?
What qualifications do you need to work at ICS?
What date do you have to submit and pay your self-assessment tax return?
The chocolates and sweets were a small gesture to say Thank You to all the students for getting involved. If you’d like to get involved with a school or college but you’re not sure how there’s currently a Give an Hour campaign running so go and register your interest; https://www.careersandenterprise.co.uk/give-an-hour
“Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving.” Albert Einstein