In Year 10, students at Rochester Independent College complete one week’s Work Experience around the time of the Easter Holidays. This year the placements take place from Monday 16 – Friday 20 May 2011. Please note that due to the impending nuptuals of a certain aristocratic couple, we have changed the date of the placements to avoid the inevitable disruptions of extra bank holidays.
Work Experience can provide students with a valuable opportunity to try out a career they are interested in. One week can often turn into longer term placements, which can then support University applications in the years to come. In the short term, these placements offer students the experience of going into the world of work and rising to the challenges of a professional environment. It invariably boosts our students’ confidence and provides them with skills they bring back to their studies.
The picture above shows Joseph Pattison, now Year 11, on his work experience placement last year at the University of Kent’s genetic labs.
We have now had all the preliminary questionnaires back from our current Year 10s, and I’m pleased that all our students have clearly thought about what they would like to do and what they want to gain from the placements.
Over the next couple of months we will be working with students to get them thinking about their placements in more detail, and start to make contact with potential employers. I have also arranged some sessions to give them both a student and employer point of view on Work Experience.
Firstly, some Year 11 students who did placements last year will give presentations to the group, so they’ll be able to hear the student’s perspective first hand.
And then on Friday 5 November Anita and Adele from Medway Education Business Partnership are coming to College to tell us about the expectations of employers and what the students can gain from their placements. They will also be able to answer questions and give advice.
Over the next couple of months MEBP will issue our students with a list of possible work places to choose from, based on the information they have given. However, some students will want to find their own placements. Parents may wish to help with this process.
I will be encouraging students to do the research and make contact themselves, and will provide them with letter and email templates to help them do that.
Any student-found placements need to be contacted and approved before the placement can commence. This helps us to know the student is going somewhere safe and well prepared, and helps to employer to know what is expected from them, and what they can ask the student to do.
If they do find their own placement, and it is outside Kent, I must have full information about the placement by Monday 22 November. If within Kent, please notify me before Monday 17 January.
In the run up to the placements we will use PSHE lessons to discuss any concerns and give advice and practice in interview technique and other work related skills.
On 5 May, a week or so before the placements, we will dedicate a full morning to preparing students on using the Work Experience Diary and finalising all arrangements before they go out and get stuck in!
If you have any questions about the Work Experience programme in general, specific questions about placements, or any other concerns, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.