The latest business breakfast at The Leigh UTC took place on Wednesday 7th February with the topic being the benefit to employers on offering work experience to students.
With governor, Clive Barker, acting as master of ceremonies, business delegates enjoyed networking prior to hearing from Principal, Steve Leahey.
An educator’s perspective
Mr Leahey discussed many aspects of work experience including when students from The Leigh UTC will be looking for opportunities; year 10 and year 12 students undertake block placements at the end of these academic years whilst the college also encourages longer term, one day a week placements for Post 16 students. He went on to elaborate upon the positive aspects of engaging with students in work experience for employers and explained that “red tape” in arranging work experience is not as onerous to as it could seem- www.hse.gov.uk/youngpeople/workexperience
An employer’s perspective
As a regular supporter of The Leigh UTC, and indeed many of our Trust academies, Rob Brack, owner of the Kiwi Print Company, www.thekiwiprintcompany.co.uk, related his experiences of offering work experience and how in a previous placement, an academy student, Connor, had blossomed. Rob explained that Connor had joined his previous company for work experience when in year 10 and has returned several times since making a positive contribution to the business.
A student’s perspective
Year 13 student, Amelia, eloquently described her experience of placements relating a journey through three work experience opportunities during her time at The Leigh UTC. Within her story she explained how, by being at a workplace, she was able to explore potential career paths and decide upon where she ultimately wishes her career to take her. Her experiences have taught her that an office job is not for her. One poignant comment that she made was that whilst studying, she’d never thought that she would use trigonometry outside of education but that she now has! Latterly, she has completed a placement at academy partner, SEM, and not only enjoyed the experience but has discovered that this is the type of working environment that would best suit her talents.
Delegates were given a tour of the Leigh UTC at the end of breakfast and commented thus:
“The whole content was very engaging. I thought it was excellent. I was genuinely impressed by all I saw and met-looking forward to working with the College.” – Richard Schmidt, Coca Cola
“Fantastic school and event “ – Cassie Thomas, Coca Cola
“Excellent” – Les Nuttman, Verandi Ltd
Any employers looking to offer work experience to students from The Leigh UTC should contact Nicholas Payne via email@example.com
3 mentors from Thames Water gave a fascinating insight to 5 mentees from The Leigh UTC.
Long Reach Sewage Treatment Works serves a population of approximately 900,000 people, covering a 200,000 square mile catchment area in Kent.
The main sewage treatment works were constructed between 1921-1926, built on the original works which date back to the late 1800’s. Since then, Long Reach STW has grown to meet the demands of an increasing population and with developments in technology. As well as treating waste water before returning it to the Thames River, the site also produces biogas from sludge which is then used to generate electricity to help power the site -a Thermal Hydrolysis Plant (THP) is used to help optimise energy recovery at this stage. The site also utilises a Fat, Oil and Grease (FOG) processing plant which produces biodiesel from left over cooking oil.
A great day was had by all and we would like to a thank Phil Gilley, Julie Carter and Gregory Baker from Thames Water who gave our students the opportunity to visit the Long Reach Sewage Centre.
Project Management Consultancy is a sponsor of Dartford Football Club working to promote a new approach to careers guidance in schools that includes the use of this first purpose built, fully sustainable small stadium in the UK.
As part of this project, Charmain a year 12 student at The Leigh UTC was given the opportunity to become part of a Junior Press Team on Saturday 23 December 2017. This was enabled through Corporate Social Responsibility funds from a Northfleet based Construction Company – NBC Group Ltd.
This event was also a promotional opportunity for all parties as part of the ‘4 Roles, 4 Goals’ initiative. The Young People, Dartford FC, NBC Group and Diligence shared the event as a case study.
The online publication produced by the Young People can be found here
Fantastic work Charmain!
During Module 3 The Leigh UTC students were fortunate enough to receive a ‘fleeting’ visit from Chief Petty Officer Andrew Denley and two other officers of the Royal Navy UTC Outreach team. They came along to meet with our five teams, who all successfully secured places in the finals of the Royal Navy Engineering Challenge 2018-Exercise Clean Sweep.
Students were able to have an informal chat with the officers , discuss their ideas and seek advice regarding the design and manufacture of their vessels. This was a great opportunity for the teams, who are now more motivated than ever to follow in the footsteps of last year’s overall winners of the Royal Navy Engineering Challenge 2017, HMS Saviour 2.0, from The Leigh UTC.
We wish all our finalists good luck for the competition to be held, on 21 March 2018, at HMS Sultan and hope they enjoy their overnight stay on HMS Bristol.
2018 has been designated “The Year of Engineering”. The UK Space Agency is joining forces with partners across government and industry to give thousands of young people inspiring experiences of engineering. The Leigh UTC is engaging in a number of exciting engineering project this year in order to engage young people in this area. KMTV News visited our Dartford site to see what this means for us, and to speak to our students about their experiences at the Leigh UTC.
Leigh UTC Students featured on KMTV and BBC new’s this morning click link here to watch video.
Presentation at The Leigh UTC
On Tuesday 5th December, Leigh Academies Trust was delighted to welcome Dan Flatt, Senior Student Recruitment Officer from Leicester University. During a busy day, Dan visited four academies- Mascalls Academy, The Leigh UTC , Leigh Academy and Strood Academy to talk to students about why they might want to go to university.
Students from mainly year 12 but also some from year 11 listened intently to Dan’s comprehensive presentations. Topics included what is it like to study at university, will I meet new people ,what skills will I develop and is it worth it; will I get a job afterwards?
Presentation at Strood Academy
Dan explained that students can choose from a diverse range of courses as there are over 40,000 different degree courses offered at over 350 institutions within the U.K. Many universities offer state of the art facilities in which to study.
He stressed the benefits of independent learning at this stage as well as opportunities such as a year out in industry, a year abroad or learning a language as part of a degree. Aspects such as where students live and the clubs and societies available were also discussed.
The skills gained from going to university were summarised as:
- Time management
- Problem solving
- Critical analysis
- Working under pressure
Companies who offer top graduate positions were included when discussing the typical higher graduate earnings in relation to non graduates.
Student finance was also explored including tuition fees, maintenance loans, loan repayments, bursaries, scholarships- and weird and wonderful grants!
Presentation at the Leigh Academy
Feedback from students was excellent with comments including:
“He was very engaging and had many good points including his personal experience”
“I appreciated the information on finances”
“It was very helpful”
Thank you Dan for some very engaging and thoughtful information
Wednesday 13th December saw a Business Youth Mentorship cream tea for business mentors and their mentees at The Leigh UTC.
Currently, 45 post 16 students are benefitting from this well established opportunity to gain from regular one to one meetings with their mentors. Mentors bring a wealth of experience of the world of work to assist students with guidance on potential career paths , writing a C.V. or looking for relevant work experience.
Two current mentors, Clive Barker and Janet Robinson are also valued governors at The Leigh UTC
As Principal, Steve Leahey explained, when thanking mentors, the work that they undertake with our students is highly valued and the opportunity to be a mentee is a privilege. In an ideal world, The Leigh UTC would wish that every student could have a mentor; such is the value of this scheme.
Students, mentors and staff took the opportunity to network with each other during the cream tea and swapped stories of successes and future aspirations.Thank you to all who attended and to the Student Services team of Kevin Nutter, Anna Wilton and Vicky Narwan for organising a both enjoyable and useful event.