Over 150 students gained a valuable insight into the world of work as part of the first Coventry & Warwickshire Business Festival.
The Careers Speed Networking Event hosted by the Careers and Enterprise Company in conjunction with the Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership (CWLEP) and the Coventry and Warwickshire LEP Growth Hub was held at The Welcome Centre, Coventry.
About 100 students attended from Coventry schools including Finham Park School and Barr’s Hill School and Community College and around 50 pupils from Warwickshire schools including Myton School in Warwick and King Edward VI College in Nuneaton during the Coventry & Warwickshire Business Festival.
Up to 50 different employers came along with representatives from the Civil Service, HORIBA MIRA, Schneider Electric, Lontra, Jaguar Land Rover, Morgan Sindall and Advanced Propulsion Centre UK along with many others giving valuable advice to students from Years 10 to 13.
Jonathan Browning, chair of the CWLEP, said the event would help to increase employability and grow talent by raising the aspirations of young people in the region.
“We are committed to improving skills and retaining skilled people in the region and there is no doubt this is an exciting place to live and work with the number of global businesses based here,” he said.
“The Careers Speed Networking Event was an ideal opportunity for businesses to engage with potential recruits and explain their work as well as learn more about the local labour market.
“The feedback has also been positive from students because it has improved their decision-making over their future career choices.
“It is important that young people leave education highly motivated, engaged and ready for the world of work and this kind of event helps to achieve that.”
The event was opened by Craig Humphrey, managing director of the Coventry and Warwickshire LEP Growth Hub.
He said: “The idea behind the event was to give each business or organisation a few minutes to explain more about their work and it was really well received.
“It also gave nearly 50 businesses from a wide range of sectors develop their relationships with schools in Coventry and Warwickshire.
“The event focused on the wider issues and challenges facing the local economy by promoting the future skills needs of the sub-region so students have all the information they need when deciding their next steps.
“It perfectly illustrated the reasons behind holding the Coventry and Warwickshire Business Festival which has been to encourage collaboration, networking, innovation and learning which was all achieved at The Careers Speed Networking Event.”
Angela Tellyn, of the Careers and Enterprise Company, added: “It was fantastic to see so many employers volunteer to take part in this event.
“It is incredibly valuable for young people to talk to employers to get a first-hand account of what it is like to work in different sectors.
“Events such as this can have a really big impact on the lives of young people in a positive way.”
Caption: From the left, Craig Humphrey (Coventry and Warwickshire LEP Growth Hub), Rebecca Johnson (Careers and Enterprise Company), Angela Tellyn (Careers and Enterprise Company), Oli Hallam (Careers and Enterprise Company) and Dave Lennox (Coventry and Warwickshire LEP Growth Hub)