So far this year...
We're only a small team here, but we get about! Let's take a look at January to March.
Site & Apps
icanbea... continues to grow on all fronts, with more content, more employers and more users! We have 22 Industries for students and job seekers to explore, all with information, videos, job role ideas and live opportunities. All of that is fed by the 300+ organisations that maintain a profile here on the site - who use the pages to showcase their contributions across the sectors and freely advertise the opportunities they have for young people in Norfolk & Suffolk.
If your organisation profile is in need of an update or you're trying to fill a vacancy or apprenticeship - you really should log on and get posting to reach thousands of our registered users and even more general site visitors looking for opportunities in the area. We are constantly working with young people who are looking for careers, apprenticeships and work experience, and if your organisation is on the site and up to date:- then you're on our radar and we can point relevant candidates in your direction!
We constantly look for ways to improve the platform and implement new features and tools. Job seekers can now use a new filter on the organisations index called 'Tags' where they can filter organisations that have a general or annual Apprenticeship Programme, Graduate Intake, Volunteering Scheme or Work Experience offering. We're also working on a Schools Dashboard pilot within the Ipswich Opportunity Area (IOA) that will see select schools able to build career related 'e-lessons' using the resources already on icanbea... and serve them up to classes of students and monitor their progress. The development will also include bespoke resources created especially for the project such as curriculum-liked lesson plans and interactive '360' virtual tours of businesses. If (we say 'when'!) successful we will be exploring funding options to roll these features out to other schools and businesses across Suffolk and Norfolk.
We continue to work closely with organisations whose career aspirations for young people match our own. In addition to the profiled organisations who contribute to the site, we work with both county councils to compliment the work they do in this area whilst receiving support from them in return, too. Support from colleges like WSC are invaluable in pushing the platform 'out there' and the work we do with the UTCN's Industry Liaison Group helps to reinforce the vital interactions between business and education that are helping prepare the next generation of professionals. We regularly support Inspire Suffolk who facilitate The Prince's Trust's 12-week programme: a course which supports young people (16-25) who are not in employment, education or training. We are always grateful for the opportunity to help engage and excite more young people about career possibilities!
We also work with the Department of Work and Pensions in both counties to support job seekers through initiatives such as their '4jobs' and 'Monday Club' programs. We engage with groups of young people to show them how to research potential employers and opportunities through the icanbea... platform whilst also helping with activities such as mock interviews. The DWP themselves are using the icanbea... platform in the various job centres and in their interactions with their customers. We run training here at the trust for groups of advisers and are currently supported with by DWP secondment to get both more advisors and employers on board. Together we can make a difference!
Workshops and Industry days
Our schools engagement program has more reach now than ever before, with our growing team delivering close to 20 icanbea... interactions in the first quarter to schools, colleges and aligned organisations throughout both counties. In addition to our traditional offerings of icanbea... opportunity workshops and support to careers fairs - we're building momentum with our Renewable Energy Careers days. Working with the Sheringham Shoal and Dudgeon Offshore Wind Farms (through our bids to their respective community funds) - we've already delivered this interactive STEM day to seven schools and currently have two more booked for May! In January we ran 'Renew Your Future' at Fakenham Academy and Old Buckenham High School - introducing students to professionals from the wind farms, explaining the importance or renewables and specifically highlighting career opportunities in local offshore wind. The days are full of learning, design and construction activities - with teams competing to build the most efficient and profitable Technic LEGO turbine, complete with a renewable-powered car race at the end! Watch out for the latest updates and pictures from the next events and we'll do a full report later in the year once the programme has concluded.
Many thanks to our tireless volunteer Matt Neal who has been instrumental in helping us to deliver each Renew Your Future day! Matt has experience working with young people through initiatives such as Camp America and gives up his time to help us interact (and manage!) the students at each event, helping them with the activities and recording their test results. Thanks buddy!
Congratulations to our apprentice Zoe for making it to the finals of the Norfolk Apprentice of the Year Award in March! All of the candidates deserved their places in the final eight, with seven of them being pipped to the post by worthy winner, Peter Savory.
Working with us since June last year, Zoe and has both learnt and contributed a great deal to a broad spectrum of the Trust's work and has wholeheartedly thrown herself into her work here and through organisations like the The Young Apprentice Ambassador Network. Sharing her experience with other young people really helps them to look at options for their own career. Well done Zoe!
If she's not busy at icanbea... workshops or looking for website content she's busy doing her assignments. We'll let you know how she gets on! (Don't forget that you can search for apprenticeship opportunities here on the site, either by signing-up and using the filter on 'My Feed' or by using the 'Apprenticeship Programme' tag on our Organisations filter.)
What can we do for you?
- If you're 12-25 living in Norfolk and Suffolk and looking for jobs or career options - use icanbea... to research and identify the sectors and organisations you'd like to work for! Sign-up and follow the things that interest you to get opportunity notifications from the job feed. The Mason Trust (that's us, too!) might be able to help you as well.If you work for a school or college, get in touch with us to see how we could support your careers programme.
- If you're an employer or organisation that has opportunities for young people, why not take a free profile to promote your contributions to your sector and shout about those opportunities? If you've already got a profile then great! Are you using it?
- If you're a supporting organisation that would like to use icanbea... as part of your own programme - let us know - we can send you information, meet to see how we can help and deliver training on how to use the platform.
We're off now to more workshops and to oversee the production of some 360 virtual employer tours, but do keep an eye on the wall below as we post about every interaction and event we're involved in. Be sure to follow this profile to see those updates as well as the quarterly highlights. We'll update this main page again in Q2.