On Saturday 23rd April, we were very pleased to welcome Jonathan Hardwick from Inspiring Futures to deliver a fascinating, insightful and enjoyable presentation on ‘Alternative routes into careers'.

His presentation gave the girls useful information on Apprenticeships – who they are available to, at what age and how to apply as well as what types of organisations offer them; Sponsored Degrees - again with information on what types of organisation offer them and the possible benefits of pursuing degree level qualifications while working for a global employer; and Graduate Employment schemes – this gave invaluable insight into the types of scheme available but also how competitive they are, with some of them having well over a hundred applicants for every place available. He therefore stressed the importance of having a good degree (at least a 2:1) but also highlighted the benefits of working for large employers.

Jonathan was keen, however, to remind the girls that the traditional route, which many of them will follow, is also perfectly acceptable and that it was also ok not to know what they wanted to do for a career. The importance of studying what they are passionate about was made clear!

Finally, Jonathan spoke about the importance of good interview preparation and technique in order to secure work experience, course places on some degrees, internships and jobs. To illustrate good practice (and bad!) girls took part in role play to demonstrate the impact of both ill-prepared and researched interviewees and those who take the time to find out about their possible employer and the role they are applying for. Much fun and laughter ensued as the girls (Gracie, Iona and Rosie) threw themselves into the role play!