Written by Patti Thomas-Verweij, Work Experience Coordinator.

In the world of work there are endless opportunities available, it is just sourcing them.

Recently we have been able to take students to various careers fairs including the Cultural Careers Fair at Brooklands museum. I took one particular student along because workshops were being run about the different jobs which come under the museum and one of these is the historic preservation of costumes dating back a long way. In the market place we were able to introduce ourselves to the Surrey Wardrobe and now hope that in the future this maybe where Frankie can get a work placement.

Also for work experience I took two students out to do some public speaking and networking at a presentation for Surrey Youth Focus where they presented to the Mayor, and other dignitaries, an enterprise idea from their year group to raise money for Age UK. Needless to say it was a great success they made some lovely contacts in their networking later on and managed to secure £60.00, awarded by the Mayor, towards their team’s project. An invaluable experience.

On the work front we have several students at present in ongoing placements.

Awa auditioned to attend an ensemble for one week in October with Graeae Theatre Company. She was chosen for the intensive week and went on to be picked for an internship for 3 months, two days a week in London. Having continued with this, travelling independently to London and working with a mentor she has now had her contract extended and has been asked to stay until the end of July working 3 days a week. This could definitely turn into ongoing freelance work when Awa moves on and invaluable for her travel training.

Another student Andrew has an ongoing placement with a local company Hair Design in Lingfield who after 3 months find him invaluable on the morning he attends. At present she has an Alumni student Polly working there two mornings and has a third work experience student starting this week. She feels it is important to pay the students for their work, after they have proved themselves. They cover organising rollers and equipment, cleaning brushes and basins and assisting stylists with clients, interacting and serving tea and coffee.

We also have students at radio stations assisting in presenting. Furthermore, some students have long term placements assisting with dance classes, hospitality, theatre, and schools and creating stained glass pieces.

All work placements can lead to ongoing placements or associated work when they move on.