Camden teams up with leading tech companies to deliver online work experience for the borough’s students
Camden Council, alongside high-profile organisations such as Google, Skanska and the Francis Crick Institute, have developed a virtual programme giving students the opportunity to gain valuable work experience during lockdown.
250 local students in Years 11, 12 and 13 are taking part in a number of online placements in June and July to gain the skills and confidence needed to help them in a future career.
Developed by Camden’s Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Maths (STEAM) team and in partnership with Speakers for Schools, a national educational charity, nine employers are providing the online placements, including the Francis Crick Institute, Central Saint Martin’s, Skanska, CSJV, Springer Nature, HS2, Camden Council and Regent’s Place.
During the placements, students will work in teams to tackle real life business challenges and take part in workshops and masterclasses such as CV writing and building a personal brand. There will also be mentor opportunities available to help young people in the future.
Google was the first company to sign up to this programme, offering 107 placements and 35 Google mentors to help support the students taking part.
Learning about the world of work is so important for helping our young people think about their future careers and learning. Whilst Covid-19 has stopped many young people taking part in work experience, I am proud that Camden businesses have stepped forward to give many of our young people opportunities to learn about some of the jobs and careers available in Camden.
I have taken part in the virtual work experience programme hosted by Google, and have been so impressed by the creativity of our young people in the challenge they were set, and the support they have been given by Google staff and leadership. I want all Camden young people to know that their ambitions and visions for their futures are important to us, and we will do all we can to support them to learn and to begin their careers.
We are thrilled to be working with Camden Council's STEAM programme and their business community to deliver amazing work experience opportunities to young people, through our pioneering Virtual Work Experience (VWEX) Programme. Much credit is due to organisations, which continue to put our next generation ahead of profit during these most challenging of times.
We were honoured to partner on this brilliant initiative, and were deeply impressed by the level of engagement. This is an uncertain time for so many young people, but one thing was very clear during our week-long programme: when they are empowered by the right tools and resources, they give us so much to be positive about.
All students taking part were required to submit an application and a teacher reference, with places prioritised for students eligible for Pupil Premium and students who are of Black, Asian and Minority ethnic backgrounds.
The Council worked closely with schools, asking them to focus on encouraging applications from prioritised students’ groups and those who haven’t previously had work experience.
For more information on the Council’s STEAM team head to www.camden.gov.uk/camden-steam