This National Careers Week, WorldSkills UK Head of Young People and Careers Dee Aylett-Smith explains our multi-layered approach to inspiring young people on their career journeys.

It is National Careers Week! At WorldSkills UK we cannot wait to join the 2020 campaign to promote all things careers to schools and colleges. To inspire excellence to young people and showcase the prestigious routes and success that can be had within technical career pathways, which is at the heart of what we do throughout the year.

At WorldSkills UK we do this through a multi-layered approach, including peer to peer careers advice, a digital toolkit for careers leads and teachers, and our flagship careers event WorldSkills UK LIVE.

Inspiring role models
Our Skills Champion network provides invaluable peer to peer careers advice directly to young people. Representing their sector specialism, business and WorldSkills UK, we continue to see that 82 per cent of young people are inspired by a Skills Champion and their career story.

Having competed in a WorldSkills UK competition, these inspiring individuals reported that they have improved their employability and technical skills by 95 per cent. Therefore, showcasing their excellence to the future pool of talent in schools and colleges is essential. We know that careers advice directly from those that are within the role and can talk about the everyday challenges and successes is the most empowering message to inspire a young person who may or may not know what the best route is for them.

Our careers toolkit
For educators and careers leaders it is equally essential that they have the right careers information in an accessible format at the click of a button. Some have limited time to digest the information to then present to their young people. The WorldSkills UK Careers Advice Toolkit provides just that. It can be downloaded in seconds and covers key stage 3 and 4, the Gatsby Benchmarks, the CDI framework and Skillsbuilder. The lesson plans are all a maximum of 20 minutes long and can be delivered independently of one another or as suite of resources they can be a complete careers advice programme.

This resource provides a great starting point for careers conversations and preparation with a mixture of content including inspiring videos of our Skills Champions, reflection activities, the Launchpad careers Quiz powered by Dev Clever and slide decks to take the user through step by step.

The toolkit will continue to be evolved to respond to the technical education and careers advice landscape and provide an essential first stop resource for the educators and careers to inspire excellence to their young people.

WorldSkills UK LIVE
Although November 2019 and my first WorldSkills UK LIVE only feels like yesterday, behind the scenes we are already in the midst of planning LIVE 2020. As the WorldSkills UK flagship event we cannot wait to welcome over 70,000 attendees to the Birmingham NEC in November to witness the culmination of our yearlong excellence agenda. For our careers activity this will provide an opportunity for young people to appreciate the wealth of technical careers and apprenticeships available to them through experiential, hands on, careers advice at the event.

This year we are excited to announce that the focus will be on the how digital is impacting future careers. For educators this will be an amazing opportunity to appreciate the traditional and employability skills required for the future, which will affect sectors and job roles, helping them inform and inspire their young people.

As I sit and prepare this, it reminds me of another great year we have ahead inspiring excellence. However, none of this is possible without the partnerships with other passionate businesses, associations, schools, colleges, our Skills Champions and campaigns such as National Careers Week.

Throughout the week, with our Skills Champions and Careers Advice Toolkit, we will be inspiring hundreds of young people to consider an apprenticeship or technical career pathway as a first choice – I can only encourage you to do the same. Whether you’re a business, educator or young person being inspired – shout about your career journey, the opportunities you present or the inspiring stories that you are hearing! Together, let’s showcase excellence at work to our future talented workforce.

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