A pioneering Northern Ireland-based, not-for-profit company is set to revolutionise careers and skills events for young people across the province.
On Thursday, 20th and Friday, 21st June 2019 over 1,200 Year 9 students from nine schools across Northern Ireland attended the first 4C UR Future “Live” event.
The two-day event provided students with the opportunity to interact with a diverse selection of simulated work experiences, which used gamification and a hands-on approach to not only engage the students, but to also uncover their unique combination of aptitudes and strengths. The information collected by 4C UR Future will be used to create a personal profile for each student, which can be used by them to help inform their GCSE subject choices, as well as guide them to the wide range of existing career interventions available.
Kathryn Wylie, Teacher at Ballymena Academy – one of the participating schools – said: “This inaugural career event is a wonderful and exciting new initiative. Pupils and staff from Ballymena Academy are delighted to have been invited to attend. It’s refreshing to see so many local companies unite, reach out, and engage with schools on such a large scale. We thoroughly enjoyed the day’s activities and look forward to receiving the student’s Career Passports.”
The initiative achieved significant support across the economic spectrum, with both large and small employers representing each major sector, together with a range of colleges and charities who helped bring the event to life. The cross-sector event was developed and delivered with the support of over 30 local companies, who also provided over 80 volunteers to assist with the facilitation of the simulated work experience games on the day.
Founder of 4C UR Future, Rose Mary Stalker, said, “Given the extent and pace of change and transformation in the world of work, it is going to become increasingly challenging for school careers services to stay on top of the diverse range of career possibilities available to young people. I saw the need for a cross-sector employer and educator collaboration, and established 4C UR Future as a result. This event aims to improve employability, skills, and career provision for young people by putting them at the centre of the process – giving them more control over their own futures. There is nothing like this within the careers space.”
Kainos was one of the first companies to sign up to support the event. Gemma Crothers, CSR Manager, at Kainos said: “We’re delighted to be taking part in this careers event by 4C UR Future. We’ve seen through our own education programme ‘Kainos Academy’ that practical and real-world experiences are the best way to help young people make informed career choices. An event like 4C UR Future “Live”, which focuses on hands-on activities, has such a fantastic impact. Six of our team volunteered and they were delighted to give students a taste of a career in tech!”
Rose Mary added: “This event is just the beginning of future collaborative initiatives. With the world of work changing so quickly, our aim is to leverage our support network of educators, coaches, businesses, community trusts, funders, and industry experts to help guide young people in accessing meaningful work and sustainable economic opportunities that are aligned with their own unique talents and aptitudes. Together, we can be game changers, and “4C” a better future for all.”
To find out more about 4C UR FUTURE LIVE and how you can get involved, go to rosemary.