The River Thames outside DLD College London

National Careers Week 2024

7th March 24

National Careers Week, which took place this week is an outstanding opportunity for schools to focus on the importance of career planning and skills development for students across years at a focal point during the academic calendar. This year, we were pleased to welcome Ed Holroyd-Pearce, President and co-Founder of Virtual Internships to deliver a ‘Skills Assembly’ to the entire College. Cambridge University graduate Ed has successfully developed internships provision for students from across the world, in particular during the Covid-19 crisis, when students were finding it particularly difficult to secure meaningful face to face work experience in companies. Virtual Internships has provided students with opportunities to gain CV and skills-enhancing experience during particularly challenging times for businesses. Despite the end of the pandemic, many companies and students have continued with the virtual model and this now represents a credible alternative to in-company internships.

Ed discussed the importance of hard versus soft skills and highlighted the importance of the skills journey, whereby students need to be able to both evidence and articulate their skills. Through the NACE Skills Framework, the focus was on skills such as : Professionalism, Communication, Teamwork, Technology, Critical Thinking, Leadership, Equity and Inclusion and Self Development. Such skills are being regularly embedded into our careers, academic and co-curricular programmes at DLD College, as we equip our students with skills and competencies which will be critical both to the present and the future workplace. To hear Ed’s own career journey as an entrepreneur was inspiring, illuminated yet further by the speaker addressing DLD Chinese students in fluent Mandarin during his assembly talk.

We also ran a number of internally delivered careers seminars this week, including Careers in Finance and Careers using Politics and the Social Sciences.

Careers in Finance, delivered by our Head of Careers, included an exploration of the careers available in the financial sector, including jobs across banking, asset management, private equity and fintechs. The seminar also explored the skills that financial institutions are seeking in the modern applicant. Students were well informed and engaged during the seminar, demonstrating great maturity and forward planning as they prepare for one of the very most competitive sectors and one which is evolving at great speed.

Careers using Politics and the Social Sciences explored the range of careers available for students studying Politics, IR and the wider social sciences subjects. There are an increasing number of degree options (combined and single honours) for students in these areas, which prepare students in slightly different ways for the employment markets. Dr Daniel Woodley, Head of UCAS and Politics explained to an engaged group of DLD students the importance of picking the right course and aligning with their longer-term career aspirations or objectives.

A Careers in Science and Engineering talk will also be taking place to coincide with British Science Week. Dr Louise Affleck, Teacher of Physics will explore during Science Week the range of careers available within Science and Engineering. This seminar will look at the different types of engineering, the skills used by engineers and the wonderful variety of organisations where engineers can work. Dr Affleck’s seminar will also explore the vast array of careers that use maths and science, sharing links and further information with students

National Careers Week has provided DLD College students with important insights into a wide range of career opportunities this week and we look forward to building on these insights as we further develop our provision across years, following the positive validation of DLD’s careers provision in the recent ISI Inspection.

Paul Schoonenberg, Business Teacher and Head of Careers