Following 5, skills-focused tutorial sessions, in which students explore career options as well as CVs, job specifications and interview practice, Year 8 interviewed Year 10 students for one of 6 roles based within a hospital. In the spirit of a mass recruitment fair, Year 10 did not apply for a specific job, instead they were matched according to the way they presented themselves at interview (from dress and body language to the content of their answers to questions).
Year 10 were each provided with a CV from which to work that they had selected from a choice of six. Deliberately, grades and degree subjects were omitted so that the CV was more closely linked to their own experiences and the emphasis placed more firmly on attributes, activities and work experience. The CV was not presented to Year 8 panels during the interview so as to ensure that the focus was placed squarely upon Year 10s’ ‘performance’ and the Year 8s’ ability to elicit good answers from their candidates. There was much excitement amongst students and many Year 8 teams managed to make correct “best fits” between students (CV) and jobs.
Year 10 seemed very happy with the jobs that they were matched to. Do ask your child which of the following 6 was thought to best-suit them: Biomedical Scientist, Accountant, Network Manager, Public Relations Manager, Surgeon and Medical Lawyer.
With the Financial Times predicting that our current students may have up to 5 different careers and with Russell Group Universities stating that they plan to change their preferred subject lists this summer, a much stronger emphasis on what was traditionally termed as “soft skills” is emerging. Year 8 students, when selecting their options next year, should think carefully about what their subjects can do for them. Year 10 students, when selecting their Post-16 options, should think carefully about exploring and extending skills beyond the curriculum. This is what will help them stand out in University and job applications in the future. Key to all of this is to develop a passion for something. Passion is key and what everyone wants to see in personal statements, interviews and covering letters. Exploring passions from as early as Year 8 is important as a longer term commitment to activities and interests impresses more than trying and dropping multiple things, or focusing, purely, upon examination results.