The BIG Alliance Mentoring Works Sixth Form programme for 2017 ended with a great celebration event for students across Camden and Islington and their mentors from BIG Alliance member companies. Hosted at Expedia, Inc.’s offices, the event welcomed students, mentors, funders, and school and company co-ordinators and provided an opportunity for students to give thanks, network, and reflect on what they had learnt. The event included some moving speeches from business volunteers and students alike. Students fed back on the impact that the last ten months had on them and their future, with many recognising that as a result of taking part in the Mentoring Works programme, they were introduced to the world of work, developed their professional and interpersonal skills and competencies, as well as increased their confidence, motivation and independence.
One student of City and Islington Sixth Form College, Centre for Business, Arts and Technology said: “This programme is without a doubt one of the best opportunities any student can get. You can ask your mentor for any advice; whether it’s learning new skills, learning about your strengths and weaknesses or even looking for work experience.”
Similar high praise came from an Expedia mentor, who said: “Rewind back to your teens and the likelihood is that you don’t find your teachers or your parents to be that cool, you may not wish to discuss your hopes and ambitions for the future or perhaps they are just very busy. That’s where programmes like Mentoring Works can step in and provide you with this professional, non-judgemental, unbiased adult who will listen to you and help you grow, such a valuable opportunity and one that I hope my children will have at your age.”
The successful event also featured a keynote speaker, Pedro Phinn, a digital skills expert from Accenture and East London Business Alliance who gave an interactive speech on ‘How to Maximise the Use of Online Presence for Future Careers’. The BIG Alliance Education team are currently building on the success of 2017 and looking forward to launching the next cohort in 2018.