National Careers Week 2024

Why I love careers education, by Angie Patterson

My journey in the field of careers education, information, advice and guidance is fast approaching a decade now and when I began, I certainly never imagined how obsessed I would become about the benefits of schools providing good CEIAG and the impact this can have on young people. Like the majority of people of my generation, careers education was none existent or for me it consisted of one questionnaire where I had to wait for the computerised results where it transpired that my ideal job was as a librarian or a museum curator.  Unfortunately none of these appealed so this made no impact on my further choices but it is amazing how many people I’ve mentioned this to over the years who had the same results; either I gravitate to very similar people or there were very limited options! Fortunately we are now in a very different place and although there is still further work to do and often still not enough buy-in from school leaders and curriculum staff, it is great to see the positive change in careers education over the last 10 years

What has amazed me most over the years is the amount of amazing volunteers and organisations there are, who are equally as passionate and I get to work with these people on a daily basis. For many it is not their job to go into a school and speak to pupils about their role; they are not doing it through their company volunteering initiative, they literally just love it and do this in their own time and it’s when this happens that the real magic occurs. We talk about role models a lot and more often the lack of them, but these volunteers are filling this gap and through their passion for their sector and jobs, they really are inspiring our young people. We often have volunteers returning to our schools and it’s so lovely to see the children remember them and excited to talk to them again, it’s also wonderful to see how much this means to the volunteers.

I am also extremely lucky to work with some amazing careers leaders in North Tyneside Learning Trust schools. They all have their ‘day jobs’ and for the majority this role is an add on but this doesn’t mean they are any less committed to the job and will do their best to get through the countless number of tasks which are involved whilst also being an amazing support to each and every individual in their school – you are all wonderful!

Careers education is so important and in an ever changing world where so many of the future jobs don’t yet exist it is vital that we continue to support and inspire our young people. If you are interested in working with North Tyneside Learning Trust on any of our careers programmes, please email angie.patterson@ntlearningtrust.org.uk

Angie Patterson is the World of Work Lead, working specifically with middle schools, secondary schools and SEND schools. If you want to find out more about WoW activities here.

- Posted on 5th March 2024

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