At the beginning of last year I wrote a series of blogs looking at things like attitude and work skills and I referenced a number of different sources. The talk about a “skills gap” doesn’t just refer to tangible, technical skills; there is an emerging picture that the gap also covers so-called “soft skills”.
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In 2012, the coalition government scrapped compulsory work experience for under 16’s in England. As you can imagine there were strong opinions for and against this decision and, being honest, I can see both sides. Yet the fact still remains; the chance to undertake real work and the routines of working life can significantly improve employment prospects, and help to clarify career paths. Work experience is a key part of studying at The Bournemouth & Poole College. While our new (and returning) students will have lots to take in with inductions and so on, the very beginning of this new academic year really IS the time to start thinking about the benefits of work experience.
Apprenticeships are not THE skills strategy, but they are at the heart of it. There are multiple pathways to career success!
The majority of apprenticeship applications are good; there may be some rough edges to smooth out, or some support needs that we can meet, but major mistakes are avoided. That’s not always the case, however. In this blog, we want to try and highlight some of the miscues and oversights that we have been faced with over the last year or so.
“Social media has become a space in which we form and build relationships, shape self-identity, express ourselves, and learn about the world around us; it is intrinsically linked to mental health.” - Shirley Cramer CBE, Chief Executive, RSPH. Social media has certainly changed the way we "do" life and there are some incredible positives to it. Over the course of the last year, I have chosen to re-evaluate my own use of social media; some of that is because of my own experiences but also those of students / young people I have worked with directly. So, what follows are just my thoughts - not a manifesto - just one persons point of view.
Have you ever heard the phrase, "you are your own worst enemy"? When it comes to job searching, this can often be the case but not for the reasons you might think.
The work skills I talked about in my last blog are crucial for a wide variety of jobs, but also everyday life. They go hand in hand with employability skills i.e. the ability to write a CV or personal statement, prepare for and negotiate an interview. But it all begins with a positive, teachable attitude. That attitude has to be a conscious choice because, unfortunately, it's not a preset or default setting.
Here we are; a new year and a new term. It's time to shake off the festive excesses and get back into routine. As we go forward into 2018 the prospect of exams and/or the completion of your course will start to come into focus. Along with that comes the prospect of applying for an Apprenticeship, or a work experience placement, perhaps part-time work or - eventually - a full-time job. In whichever way (and at whatever point) you are looking to access the world of work there are some key skills that employers will be looking for...
Some of you reading this may be still at school, perhaps in Year 11 - GCSE's are on the horizon and there are decisions to be made about your next step. Some of you may be on a full-time course and looking at progression. You may be the parent or guardian of someone who is. It can feel overwhelming, especially if you are not certain. If your goal is an Apprenticeship or full-time college course then we're here to help keep things on track!
Your CV is a tool to get you to an interview; that is its primary function. Therefore, the most important thing is to know the message you want to deliver, and make sure that everything on your CV supports that theme. In this blog, we look at some common mistakes and how to avoid them.