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By Rebecca Lakeman, CEIAG Co-ordinator

Here at Accrington Academy we recognise the importance of encouraging students to think about their future aspirations and how they use their experience at school to make themselves as employable as possible in the long term. Therefore it was no surprise that we were on board with National Careers Week. There were numerous activities going on across school over the course of the week.

‘Are there male jobs and female jobs?’ was The Big Question all form groups were faced with for the week. This sparked some really interesting debates and generated lots of great pieces of creative work highlighting the students’ thought processes and arguments for their opinions. The winners were Z-SKI who produced a fantastic, well thought-out piece of work.

The college assemblies centred on the ‘Career Journey’. The journey to a career is not always a straightforward one. It is expected that students in their generation will, on average, have at least 7 different jobs in their lifetime; the job market is ever-evolving and students need to prepare themselves to develop transferable skills that will aid their career management and movement. In order to help educate the students on this topic, the Directors of College gave the students in their college an insight into their personal Career Journey and advice on how to plan their own journey to reach their ultimate aspiration.

Students interested in joining the Army were invited to an Army Careers talk hosted by Army Careers Advisor, Pat Jones. The students, a mix of Year 8, 9, 10 and 11, engaged with Pat’s own personal experience of being in the Army, the numerous roles he has performed, the countries he has visited and the qualifications he has achieved. The students asked some great questions and gained a real insight into what it is really like being in the Army.

Pat Jones commented,

It was good for me to come into the Academy on Thursday and pass on information about joining the Army and to also give students an insight into some of my personal experiences whilst serving. There’s a huge range of careers in the Army to choose from, including Catering, Logistics and Engineering, Medicine, Law, IT and many more.’

We welcomed Chris Dickinson and Charlotte Ainsworth from Themis Apprenticeships at Burnley College who conducted an Engineering and Construction workshop. Charlotte stated that, ‘

‘The purpose of the activity was to discuss the local engineering opportunities, how the science behind inventions can be applied in today’s feats of engineering innovations. It was also to inform the students about what an Apprenticeship is all about and what opportunities there are in Engineering and Construction’.

It really ‘got the cogs turning’ for students and provided advice to help decide if these industries are right for them. It all culminated in a competitive paper aeroplane making competition. There were some very interesting designs, some more effective than others, but ultimately the winner was Year 11 student, Stephen Hill whose aeroplane zoomed to the opposite side of the classroom, and no doubt would have carried on into the stratosphere had the classroom door been open! A deserved winner!

All in all, a great opportunity for students to look ahead at their goals and then plan accordingly.

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