Social mobility charity Speakers for Schools is teaming up with 113 leading employers to provide 11,000 students with tech-related work experience placements across the UK.
Launching between 21st to 25th June 2021, Speakers for Schools’ new campaign Predict ’21 will highlight the opportunities technology can bring, educating the next generation on how it is rapidly transforming the way we live and work.
Whether or not young people aspire to work in the tech sector, technology plays a significant role in a range of sectors spanning energy, law, fashion, healthcare, finance and construction, and the campaign will further demonstrate how technology is increasingly weaving into all aspects of life.
Since March 2020, in-person work experience opportunities have slowed significantly following the Covid-19 pandemic, preventing young people from exploring new career paths or connecting directly with employers.
To address this, Speakers for Schools is offering virtual placements with notable employers such as L’Oreal, United Utilities, Virgin Money and Spaceport Cornwall, connecting young people with careers they may not have access to or previously considered. The campaign’s work experience opportunities covers innovative business ideas for rockets and space systems, artificial intelligence in digital marketing, financial and mental wellbeing, and cybersecurity in hospitals.
For students who feel unsure of the career path to choose, Speakers for Schools is also organising inspirational virtual talks from sector leaders around careers in tech-related roles. Speakers include Sir Peter Bazalgette, Chairman of ITV, Ed Couchman, General Manager at Snap Inc and Gisela Abbam, Chair of the British Science Association.
Beau Rogers, 15, a GCSEs student from Birmingham, recently did his work experience with Spaceport Cornwall and said:
“I really enjoyed working with Spaceport Cornwall, during my experience I worked in a team to develop a new product using existing satellite technology to help the local community. I think our idea to track fish and create dynamic and changing fishing and ‘no-take’ zones was very inventive. Working on a project like this has further inspired me to pursue a career in aerospace engineering. It gave me a very useful and interesting insight into the space sector and allowed me to meet some people who do jobs similar to those I want later in life.”
Dave Pollard, Outreach and Education Manager, Spaceport Cornwall, said:
“We are thrilled to be able to offer virtual work experience, particularly during a time where it is almost impossible to offer in-person work experience. Students were able to work virtually with colleagues from across the organisation. Students worked in groups to prepare a bid for a new space business which incorporated research, marketing, finance and a unique business idea and we were amazed by the ideas they presented back to us.”
Rachael Saunders, Education and Policy Director at Speakers for Schools, said: ‘There is no limit to the impact of technology on careers of the future. From augmented reality to space exploration, there are so many opportunities for the next generation. Predict ‘21 promises to shine a light on the many careers opportunities that tomorrow’s world holds for the young people of today.’
Find out more at wepredict.org