Students at JBVI impressed potential employers from the region’s leading businesses when their interview skills were put to the test in a practice session.
Organised by John Riddell and Michelle Brannen from Business in the Community, a total 17 representatives from a wide-range of organisations took part.
Mr Fox, the Academy’s careers and employability manager, said: “A number of employers spoke to me personally about how confident, well-presented and articulate our students were.
“One said the performances she witnessed were better than people she had interviewed for actual jobs in her company and another remarked on how well students could adapt between formal and informal conversation.
“The chance to be interviewed by employers is a valuable experience in preparing our young people for the world of work and we would like to thank all involved.
“Students said that the three interviews gave them an opportunity to improve as they went along and that they felt proud of their final performance.”
Jackie Gardner, corporate relations director at Faulknerbrowns architects:
“It was a privilege to have been involved in the recent mock interview sessions with the Sixth Form pupils at NCEA.
“Having undertaken initiatives like this at other schools, it was truly rewarding to experience first-hand the calibre of your students. All of those whom I interviewed were bright, informed and hugely positive about their futures which gave me great confidence in the support and advice which your pupils are receiving.
“I look forward to being invited to participate again.”
Students from JBVI have completed an engineering project with Blyth-based Offshore Renewable Energy (ORE) Catapult as part of a week-long work experience programme.
The three sixth form students, Josh McKay, Nathan Lee and Reece Crate undertook a project to design a new enclosure for a drive train test rig at ORE Catapult, the UK’s flagship technology innovation and research centre for wind, wave and tidal energy.
Jonathan Hughes, a research engineer at ORE Catapult who helped the students during their placement, said: “The project required the students to consider a wide range of factors, including materials, cost, design, dimensions and how the enclosure might perform under live test conditions.
“It was all about problem-solving, something engineers face on a daily basis. I was really impressed with how the students developed their ideas so quickly during the week.
Josh said: “The week has opened my eyes to how challenging an engineering role can be. I realise how exciting a project can be when you begin to find solutions.”
Nathan added: “I feel it really developed my problem-solving skills, which is what engineering is all about.”
The work experience week is part of a wider approach from ORE Catapult to support and encourage young people to consider a career in STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) through local partnerships, such as the one with NCEA.
Mr Mark Fox, NCEA’s Careers and Employability Manager, said: “The Academy’s links with ORE Catapult have gone from strength to strength. Work experience enables students to make clear links between what they are studying and how they can use it in their future career.”