By Elizabeth Sparrow, Archives of IT Trustee
In the last quarter of 2019, as we developed our education resources we sought feedback and advice from schools, teachers and students. The Central Foundation Girls’ School (CFGS) is one of the schools with which we worked and as a result, Dr Bailey-Morrissey, the school’s Student Aspirations Project Manager, invited us to their second annual careers fair. I attended on behalf of the Archives.
We were one of forty organisations, including employers, universities and colleges, that attended the event. I talked to teachers and students and shared with them our ‘What About a Career in Technology’ presentation.
Dr Bailey-Morrissey, together with her Apprentice Careers Assistant, Anisa Begum, arranges the careers fair for students in Years 7 to 13 in order to actively encourage them to plan for their future. Dr Bailey-Morrissey explains: “Some students may have a career path in mind and know exactly what they want to do. However, there will also be those who may be undecided and need additional advice, guidance and information.
“The overall aim of our careers fairs is to raise students’ awareness of a wide range of career and educational opportunities available to them. We were delighted that the Archives of IT could join us and provide students with access to information about careers in technology. It’s so important that we expose our students to people who work in different sectors who were able to offer information, advice and guidance about careers in those areas.”
It was a really busy and inspiring day with over several hundred students passing through. Talking to the students was very interesting and I was able to show them some of the different opportunities open to them through our web pages and careers presentation. These were used to help them see that a career in technology is open to all and that it’s about creating the future.
Following the careers fair, the Student Council organised a survey to obtain feedback, both on the day and specifically on the Archives careers presentation, which has been very helpful. Many students found the presentation interesting and informative. I’m particularly pleased that several students commented on the use of the real-life stories, which we feature in the presentation and the diversity included in the presentation, both in the people shown and the wide range of potential careers.
We are very grateful to Dr Bailey-Morrissey and her students at CFGS for working with us on this project and are looking forward to more feedback from other schools and teachers as the resources are used in classrooms across the UK.