People & Skills Projects - 03 March 2016

£300,000 employability initiative officially launches

A £300,000 strategy to boost workforce skills and help young people realise their career potential – backed by the D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership – has been officially launched today (March 3).

The launch event for the Enterprise Adviser network was held today at Nottinghamshire County Cricket Club’s Trent Bridge ground, West Bridgford, Nottingham. Businesspeople, schools’ students and teachers; and representatives from Rushcliffe, Nottingham City, Broxtowe, Gedling, and Newark and Sherwood councils; attended a morning education-themed event and an afternoon session aimed at businesses.

D2N2 – a private-sector led partnership promoting economic growth and jobs creation across Derby, Derbyshire, Nottingham and Nottinghamshire – and The Careers & Enterprise Company, a Government-backed body set-up to get UK employers and schools working more closely together, are jointly investing £300,000 (£150,000 each) in D2N2’s Employability Framework and its Enterprise Adviser network.

The Framework is strengthening links between businesses, and schools and post-16 education centres; by addressing the mismatch between the employability skills and training taught to young people and those needed by companies’ workforces. One of the Framework’s initiatives is the Enterprise Adviser network for the D2N2 area.

Up to 80 businesspeople will act as volunteer Enterprise Advisers; working with a school or college to give senior staff an insight into business needs, motivating students to think about future careers, and creating opportunities for other business leaders to be involved. This will be in addition to employability work education providers already undertake, such as encouraging students to attend careers fairs (as pictured).

Business volunteers will be supported by seven Enterprise Co-ordinators, employed across the D2N2 area.

At today’s official launch business people who attended were encouraged to get involved and become volunteer Enterprise Advisers.

D2N2 wants to attract volunteers from small and large companies, and the self-employed, from a range of commercial sectors. It is particularly interested in people working in D2N2’s eight key sectors of construction, creative and digital, transport and logistics, transport equipment manufacturing, life sciences, the visitor economy (tourism), food and drink manufacturing and low carbon technologies.

School teachers and students at today’s event also heard about the benefits to them, in joining the network.

A series of workshops for area schools, academies and colleges are also being held this month (March); to offer more information on the Enterprise Adviser network and how they can get involved. These will be delivered by Berni Dickinson, Marketing and Enterprise Director at multi-academy trust, the Evolve Trust.

The next workshops – solely for schools, college and academies wanting to know more about the D2N2 Employability Framework and the Enterprise Adviser network – will be held, from 4pm to 6pm, on:

  • Tuesday March 8 – At Meden School in Burns Lane, Warsop (NG20 0QN). To book online to attend this event click HERE.
  • Tuesday March 15 – At Heanor Gate Science College in Kirkley Drive, Heanor (DE75 7RA). To book online to attend this event click HERE.

Ian Greenaway, D2N2 LEP Employability Champion and Board Member for the East Midlands Chamber of Commerce, said: “The success of our D2N2 Employability Framework and the Enterprise Adviser Network relies on the support of both businesses and schools and their wanting to be involved. This is an opportunity to help businesses grow the skills of their workforce and to put students on the right career paths.”

Claudia Harris, Chief Executive of The Careers & Enterprise Company, added: “We are delighted to be launching the Enterprise Adviser Network in the D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership area today. We are building on work already happening in the area to tackle youth unemployment and the skills gap.

“The combined forces of the Enterprise Adviser Network and the D2N2 Employability Framework will make a real difference in connecting young people to local businesses in the area and in turn inspire, motivate and inform them about their future career.”

To find out more or if interested in becoming an Enterprise Adviser, visit the D2N2 website at www.d2n2lep.org/skills/d2n2-enterprise-adviser-network

Media wanting further information on the work of the D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership can contact D2N2 Communications Officer Sean Kirby on 0115 9578749 or email: sean.kirby@d2n2lep.org

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