Over the last couple of months a group of 30 students from Beechwood School joined HELO (Higher Education Liaison Officer), Gemma on several Monday mornings for various working-skills themed workshops. The sessions were split into three themes, CV writing, interview skills and a Careerpilot session; this allowed students an opportunity to use the Careerpilot website to look at their skills, career interests and job sector information.
The aim of this series of workshops was to strike a balance between providing valuable advice about CV writing and interview skills, whilst also giving the students a chance to practice the skill of identifying and presenting their skills. Due to the challenge of being awake on a Monday morning, sessions kicked off with an ice-breaker activity which spurred all involved into action. The workshops were full of activities, such as quizzes and building a skills map - these gave students a hands on opportunity to develop their skills.
Feedback received from the students about these sessions indicate that the workshops created positive changes, with over 85% of students involved either ‘agreeing’ or ‘strongly agreeing’ that they had improved their knowledge and confidence regarding working skills. Students reported that the most useful aspect of the workshops was having an opportunity to find their skills. All students found the workshops at least ‘quite helpful’, with the Careerpilot session being most popular with the highest amount of ‘very helpful’ ratings.
Additionally the feedback from students included a request for more information about university. Taking this into consideration, future working-skills workshops will include a few activities that focus on interviews for further and higher education courses and applications.
Overall, the workshops were a success; they provided students with more knowledge and confidence regarding working skills and met the aims and objectives set by Gemma.