The last month has marked one year since Mansfield District Council launched its innovative Career Ambassador Programme.
The aim of the scheme is two-fold: for council officers to help shape students’ career pathways and give them insight into the working world, and for pupils to broaden their understanding of what their local authority does and the wealth of opportunities and departments available to work in – right on their doorstep.
The Career Ambassador Programme has over 60 officers across various departments in the authority volunteer time to work with secondary, special educational needs and disability (SEND), and college providers throughout the year in a variety of activities.
In the last academic year (2022 – 2023), officers have worked with every educational provider in Mansfield and have conducted 30 activities across all the schools and colleges. Activity types have included career fairs, mock interviews, mentoring sessions, speed networking and career pathway presentations.
Deputy Mayor Councillor Craig Whitby said: “Mansfield is stepping forward and leading by example for our young people to help them in their journey to employment by continuing this scheme.
“This programme not only allows students to learn more about the world of work and the broad range of careers in local authority, but it also aims to provide meaningful encounters in the workplace for students.
“To know that we have completed at least one activity with every secondary, SEND and college provider in the district is no small feat. I am so proud of Team Mansfield to make these conversations happen and create meaningful activities and engagements together – all for the benefit of our young people is an incredible achievement.”
Officers also supported West Nottinghamshire College's job and apprenticeship fair in May, which gave college-leavers across all curriculum areas the opportunity to speak with representatives of local and national employers to discuss careers, employment opportunities and apprenticeships, in addition to hearing about the employability skills that are needed.
Maxine Buttery, employability and careers manager at West Nottinghamshire College, said: “It is critical that we bring education-providers and employers together to ensure our young people are aware of the career opportunities available to them locally and raise their aspirations.
“Programmes like the Career Ambassador Programme are really important and work hand-in-hand with the college’s careers programme to support students with their next steps.
“It is commendable that the council has invested in supporting its employees to share their knowledge and experience of the industry to inspire students of all ages.”
The council is part of the North Notts Careers Hub, helping businesses, schools, apprenticeship providers and colleges to collaborate for the benefit of young people. This partnership informs students about the huge range of jobs and career pathways on offer and makes decisions that work best for them and their futures.
The Career Ambassador Scheme also links with the Mansfield Start Portal – www.startinmansfield.com. This website is a valuable career information tool and resource to raise young people’s awareness of local businesses, current job roles, and future growth sectors.
The Career Ambassador Programme is part of the skills programme, which supplements the council’s Mansfield Youth Charter scheme. This aims to create opportunity, recognise talent and inspire young people in Mansfield district.