Take a look at what has been going on at Learning to Work lately 


The workshops gave a diverse insight into potential STEM careers including sessions on coding, artificial 
intelligence, engineering and toothpaste design, run by CA, Deutsche Bank, Mars and GSK respectively. 
Students also had the chance to “speed network” with a wide range of employees from each of the 


Students and young people had the chance to ask questions, pick up ideas, listen to inspirational speakers plus make contact with potential employers. They were able to get personal advice on how to put together an impactful CV and practise their interview techniques. 
The event was also open to the general public on the first day and during this time students, parents, and Slough residents attended the event to find out more about job and training opportunities available. 


University can sometimes be pushed on students in every way, shape and form, so it was also great to see a multitude of career paths that embraced apprenticeships and other alternatives to university. It is increasingly more important for students to understand that in today’s day and age where it seems like everyone has a degree, it is necessary for them to get as much experience as they can in as many fields as they can. This is important not only from a CV point of view, but it also makes young people more interesting because they will have more to impress employers with. 
One student said that he was glad he had attended Destinations Expo because he had four or five different career paths that he was thinking about, and throughout the course of the day he had successfully gathered a lot more information on each career choice, and now had enough ammunition to make an informed decision. Another student said that she was previously unaware of just how many different types of apprenticeships were available, and after attending Destinations Expo she had realised that her very specific passion could be turned into an apprenticeship that seemed as though it was almost specifically created for her. 
This is what was so great about Destinations Expo: all career paths were catered for. There were companies looking for apprentices, institutions such as East Berkshire College informing students of alternative options to A Levels once they reached the age of sixteen, and companies looking to employ students as interns - the options were endless. Days such as this gently force students to talk to people they might never have thought of approaching themselves. They provide young people with the opportunity to quickly learn the kinds of things that they should be asking in order to make an engaging impression. They force students to come out of the comfort zone of a familiar school setting, and be thrust into a room with however many great companies and they encourage students to learn how to confidently speak to these companies as opposed to huddling in a corner with their friends. 
The day was a great success because the impact that it had on the students was visible without a doubt! 


We had 20 Business Volunteers at the Herschel Grammar Interview Day, ranging from Businesses, Consultants from the Private and Public Sector, in total they interviewed 120 Herschel Grammar students for the following job choices:- 
• Customer Support Advisor 
• Underwriting Apprentice 
• Laboratory Apprentice 
As first the students were nervous and very unsure of what to expect but soon relaxed once the Business Volunteers spoke to them and gave them advice on what to include in their covering letter and CV. At the end of the day Students were asked to complete an evaluation form so we could evaluate how beneficial the students found the experience and we were able to measure the impact it had. 
Overall the students found the experience extremely rewarding and below are just a couple examples of this: 
94% of students said it improved their ability to present themselves in a positive manner 
92% are now aware of their own strengths and what they could now offer to a future employer 
75% now have a better understanding of the world of work 
91% now feel more confident about talking to and networking with people they have not met before 
100% agreed I was a valuable use of school time and agreed that The Business Volunteer helped them improve their CV and personal skills 
Learning to Work would like to thank the following Companies for taking time out of their place of 
work to help raise the aspirations of our young people: 
British Telecom, Morgan McKinley and Adobe and the Independent Consultants. 


The business volunteers then had an opportunity to try their hand at the ‘business game’ in which players must create and sustain a successful business. Although the game is designed for the young students who participate in the Mosaic Challenge, one of the two groups of business professionals managed to finish the game owing the bank over four thousand pounds – luckily the currency used is all virtual! 
Overall, the volunteers were given a very good introduction to Mosaic and left feeling prepared for their upcoming mentoring. 
If you want to find out more about the Mosaic Enterprise Challenge or would like to become a mentor please contact us. 


Learning to Work would like to thank Fujitsu UK and Centrica PLC for their kind donation of Laptop Bags.  


“As a result of the STEM skills gap in Europe, the European Commission estimates that there could be up to 825,000 unfilled vacancies for ICT professionals by 2020. This needs to be addressed now, so that future generations can meet their full potential. Coding and programming skills are crucial in addressing this and events like this are vital in convincing young students that coding can be both fun and a viable career choice. They are a first step in inspiring boys and girls to consider a career in STEM,” said Sarah Atkinson, VP EMEA Communications at CA Technologies and head of Create Tomorrow. 
Students from Slough & Eton School, Holyport College, Ditton Park Academy, Easthampstead Park Community School, Sandhurst School, Upton Court Grammar and Windsor Girls’ School took part in the event. 
Caty Salter, 14, a student at Sandhurst School, said after the event: “I have really enjoyed today; not just the programming, but the introduction to the world of work. It has made me see that I definitely want to work in a STEM career. I was already interested in mechanics, but now I can see there are lots of other options open to me as well.” 
Amy John, Deputy Head of Year Nine at Slough & Eton School, said: “Events like this are important for getting students thinking about career options, and allowing them to see what a professional work environment is like. The students here today need to pick their GCSE options next year, so this is a great opportunity for them to learn about some of the jobs which will be available to them.” 
Waqas Arbi, Raising Standards Leader at Windsor Girls’ School, added: “We have brought students to this event for the past three years. They love it and leave full of confidence and interest in technology careers. Girls are underrepresented in STEM and it’s our responsibility to work with organisations like CA Technologies to help address this. “ 
The Create Tomorrow initiative is an EMEA wide programme that aims to engage CA Technologies’ 2,000 strong workforce in the region to help address the skills gap and champion the creation of digital jobs. CA Technologies is also a partner of the European Commission’s Grand Coalition on Digital Jobs and eSkills4jobs. CA works with local non-profit Learning to Work to deliver its Create Tomorrow programme in the UK. 
Learning to Work would like to thank CA Technologies for their continued support. 


Andy Howell, Slough Uban Renewal General Manager, presented the development activity of SUR to the girls attending and said “The best way to demonstrate opportunities and deliver careers advice is to bring it alive and yesterdays event was an excellent example of just how powerful meeting, talking and networking is to excite our talent pool of tomorrow. Women in Construction was an ideal opportunity to break the many myths around stereotyping within the industry.” 
“Women in Construction was a very inspiring and beneficial event for our students. The girls gained a great deal from it and particularly enjoyed the speed networking activity asking some very pertinent and searching questions, which in itself showed how much they had absorbed from the event. They were very interested to find out as much as they could about the roles the ladies had within the various organisations. I know the girls were also reassured to hear that on the whole, the ladies had faced no problems being a woman working in the roles they had in traditionally male environments and that more and more women were joining these occupations. 
Events such as this are a really valuable way of introducing a range of careers to students that they otherwise would not consider (or even have heard of before) and they also help to correct any misconceptions and to reassure young people who understandably worry about their future jobs and careers that the best way to succeed is to work hard at subjects they enjoy and make the most of every chance they have to find out about a wide range of career opportunities so they can make informed decisions about their futures.” Thank you for organising the event, Deborah Savage, Upton Grammar School 
Student comments: 
On the 2nd of November, 2016, I was lucky enough to be part of the event 'Women in Construction' held in 'The curve' from 9:30 - 2:45 conducted by the members of Learning to Work and nourished by the presence of prominent women in the construction industry. The aim of the event was to inform, inspire and introduce us to the world of construction and to make us aware of the different job aspects within the industry. 
Before, taking part in the event, construction, for me, was just 'building'. However, the event truly changed my views about the industry and I realised that the career opportunities available within construction industry is numerous. We got a chance to talk to ten women who proved themselves in this industry and were able to ask many questions and they were keen to clear our doubts, which certainly were helpful to know more about the job prospects, their impact on community and discussed about their recent projects and development. We also did few workshops which improved our creative, logical and analytical skills along with gaining further knowledge on skills required for this industry. 
The lady who inspired me the most was said ‘She was forced to quit schooling due to financial crisis. However, this didn't let her passion die and her dedication and hard work has now made her as one of the leading female consultants and she has surely influenced lot of us.’ Sandra Neeliyara - Student 
“I think that events like this are extremely important for people of our age (15/16). It is so important to be informed about options available – I really enjoyed hearing about people’s experiences, Thanks!” – Upton Grammar School 
“At first I had very little understanding of women in construction but now I see that women are just as good at working in construction as men” – Langley Academy 
Feedback showed us that 100% of students thought it was a good use of their time and very informative. 


The transition from education to employment or college can be a very daunting process so this new 10 week programme aimed at specific students has been well received by both schools and students. 
Through a series of interactive workshops, business visits and an individual support programme students will gain an insight into ways into work exploring various career paths and entry level requirements in areas of interest. They will gain an understanding of diversity in the workplace and meet individual role models who have themselves overcome a variety of personal challenges. Each young person will participate in a 1-2-1 interview and will be supported to create an action plan as they move through their final year in education. 
Nancy Lalor Operations Manager for Learning to Work said "We are thrilled to finally launch the programme and bring everyone together for the first time. Following 1-2-1 interviews in school students are now working together as the programme evolves and we start the process of bringing careers advice alive with the interaction of business, ambassadors, site visits and group discussions. 
Making choices about future plans is a very daunting prospect so SEN was created to offer a programme of activity and interaction to help make these choices as informed as possible. This targeted approach will support young people as they individually identify a pathway they would like to pursue. The LTW team will work closely with students and schools to create an action plan to make student aspirations a reality. We all need a little support to make things happen so this is just what SEN was created to do”. 
School feedback: 
“I have spoken to Vince and Nikki and they said they had a fantastic day with our students so thank you. The students found the ‘ice breaker activities’ useful and said it was nice to meet other students in different schools – they didn’t like working in different groups to start with but said it was actually better in the end. Great start to the programme.” Karen Green, Westgate School 
“I thought today went really well, a couple of students struggled a bit to talk to new people but I think today was a great idea so that they could start to get to know the other students and each other better. It was good to see our students come out of their comfort zone, a great achievement. They are all looking forward to the next session and having the chance to meet people from other organisations over the next few weeks. The students were very positive on the way back to school in the mini bus.” Ruth Turner, Langley Academy 
Alan Coates comment: 
“I think the opportunity for young people to participate in learning initiatives is very powerful in helping them to develop the skills and confidence they will need in later life. This project is very worthwhile! It is inclusive and innovative in its approach and progressive and sustainable in its outcomes. It is precisely the type of project that Heathrow Communities for Youth are looking to support. Well done to all involved ." Alan Coates, Chair of Ealing and Hillingdon EBP 
Start Employability Now was awarded the donation under Heathrow Community Funds Communities for Youth and will bring young people into contact with business ambassadors from MARS, Hilton T5, CA Technologies, O2 Telefonica, Slough Aspire, SEGRO and Barclays. 
Heathrow Community Fund is part of an independent grant-making charity set up by Heathrow’s owners to support and strengthen local communities close to the airport. In the past two years it has donated more than £1 million through three grant programmes, funding projects which support young people, help protect the environment and support active local communities. Funds come from an annual donation from the airport, donations from airline passengers and fines imposed on aircraft that breach noise limits. 
More information about the fund and how to apply for grants is available on the website 


Do you want to support and develop young people? Do you enjoy creating new events, activities and opportunities? Then we would love to hear from you, take a look at our latest vacancies to see how you can make a difference. 


The daytime session accommodated over 800 students from the local secondary schools, allowing them to connect with business ambassadors and further education to give them an in site into their future paths. The evening session was open to the public in which many people attended and took advantage of the one-to-one interview and CV writing sessions. 
Learning to Work would like to thank all the business sponsors and Bracknell Forest Partnership for making this event a huge success. 


Learning to Work worked alongside Mars to deliver the LEGO Mindstorms challenge as a team building exercise for the reliability/maintenance team. The sessions involved colleagues being split into teams and working together to build their own LEGO robots, programme and compete them in a final Robot Race Off. We were very impressed by the interaction and enthusiasm of the Mars team with some building their robots in record time without instructions! 
We’d like to thank Mars for taking part and being a fantastic, enjoyable group to work with.. 

MOSAIC - Could you Mentor, Inspire and Motivate Young People? SEPTEMBER 2016 - ongoing 

Mentors will be fully supported throughout the programme by Learning to Work and all training and resources will be provided. 
We have two training sessions in October both being held at Heathrow/Windsor Marriott, Ditton Park, Langley Slough SL3 8PT 
Tuesday 11 October 2016 @ 9:30 – 2:30 - Secondary School Mentoring Programme 
Mosaic’s secondary school mentoring programme provides a package of opportunities to raise the aspirations of young people and then help close the gap between those aspirations and their attainment. 
Requirements: 7 hours over several weeks to be selected between yourself (the mentor) and the school. 
Tuesday 11 October 2016 @ 13:00 – 15:30 - Enterprise Challenge Training 
The Mosaic Enterprise Challenge is an annual, national competition during which secondary school students ages 11- 16 learn about establishing and running a business through a business simulation game. The competition is unique in that students benefit from being mentored by experienced business professionals who pass on their knowledge and skills about various aspects of business. 
Requirements: 1 hour a week for 6 weeks or 1 full day in January/February. 


Teams were tasked with making a Healthy Celebration Meal for two within a budget of £15.00, it is very impressive what they manage to produce in the one hour time frame they are given for the competition. Our judges from our Sponsor, En Route and Sodexo were very impressed with their presentation and cooking skills, in fact the standard of desserts was extraordinarily high with a dessert in each age range winning the judges spot prize. Winning teams were from St. Edward’s Middle School (Year 7 and 8 competitions) and Slough and Eton Business and Enterprise College (Year 9). 
Thanks to Gordon Vaughan from Sodexo for leading the judging panel and to our two judges from our Sponsor En Route. Also thanks to all the teachers that support their pupils through the competition. 
For more photos visit our Photo Gallery


The final winners on the day were The Royal First School, Windsor, winning not only the first prize but also the spot prize. The judges from our sponsor En Route were very impressed with the way the pupils worked considering their young age and with what they produced for their packed lunch boxes. 
Our thanks go to Judith Foskett at St. Edward’s Middle School for hosting this event and to our sponsor’s En Route also thanks to all the teachers that supported all the pupils through the in-school rounds as well as the final. 


Another great STEM Lego Mindstorm event at Ludgrove School. The Year 8 students were in their final weeks before moving on to their next schools, what better way to finish than with a Robot Race Off to see which team could be crowned champions. Working in teams students enjoyed constructing their robots in record time, they then had to work out how to get their robots to the end of the race track without hitting the obstacles. 


Learning to Work were delighted to deliver this year’s Heathrow Secondary School Challenge to Year 8 students in schools across the 5 boroughs adjoining the airport, Ealing, Hillingdon, Hounslow, Slough and Spelthorne. These fun and interactive LEGO® MINDSTORMS™ workshops encouraged and promoted Science Technology Engineering & Maths study and careers, developed skills for the world of working including communication, team work and problem solving and introduce students to Heathrow Limited and the many opportunities that exist within. 
We even get a mention on the The Royal Society website - Computing Education 


You will have the opportunity to discuss with businesses the vacancies they have and the skills they need to fill them. For more information and to sign up for this free event and workshops register via our Homepage or Eventbrite 
This event is open during the day for schools, please contact Linda Moody ( if you would like you school to attend. 
If you are a business and would like to exhibit please contact Central Berkshire EBP or register via Eventbrite. 


Students then had the opportunity to ask questions of a panel of experts about job and career options, ways into work and the expectations from business. Volunteers from Mars, Aston Bond, O2 Telefonica, Unilever, Leaseplan, Age Concern, GSK, Norsk Global, District Judge Tan Ikram were amongst the 80 panellists who kindly got involved and supported the Q & A sessions. 
After the Q & A sessions students made their way into the Market Place where they interacted with over 65 exhibitors to hear first hand about ways into work and what career paths their chosen GCSE's could potentially lead to. The event was open to the general public from 3.45pm to 7pm and during this time students, parents, and Slough residents attended the event to find out more about job and training opportunities. 
"Businesses that participated in this event had the opportunity to enthuse and motivate young people about their industry and potentially meet future employees, whilst universities and training organisations were able to promote their courses or apprenticeships and explain first-hand the entry level requirements. Slough Aspire Careers Event 2016 was very much about bringing careers advice alive for young people and inspiring them about their futures," says Rachael Burt, Managing Director of Learning to Work, the charity organising the annual event. 
She adds: "Slough has a vibrant business community. Many local employers fully supported this event. They were keen to be part of both the Slough Aspire Careers Event 2016 and nurture the future workforce. It is vital that young people understand the various career pathways open to them, the skills that employers are looking for and the type of jobs that are available locally. This was also a great opportunity for Slough residents to engage with the business community." 


The Slough Aspire Careers Event will provide an opportunity for students and parents from across the whole of the Slough and surrounding areas to engage with local businesses and find out about career opportunities, apprenticeships and training within the local area now or for the future. This has been organised in partnership with Slough Aspire and Learning to Work. 
On Wednesday 3rd February from 3.45pm to 7.00pm the session will be open to students, parents and carers and to young people who may have left education and need help getting into work or Training. 
There is also the opportunity to sign up for a session with a Business Volunteer to get expert advice on CV Preparation or Interview Techniques. If you are interested in either of these sessions please visit Learning to Work at the event. 
Bookable presentations are also available "Introduction to Apprenticeships" and "CV & Interview Techniques" 
REGISTER NOW VIA OUR HomePage or Eventbrite. 


Having previously applied by letter and submitting their CVs for authentic positions in the current jobs market, Herschel Grammar students were then all invited for individually timed face to face interviews on 13th January 2016. 
To ensure that the experience was realistic, the candidates had been advised to fully prepare for their interviews by researching the role and companies they had opted for. They were required to sign in then wait in a reception area until their professional interviewer was available. The pacey one to one sessions comprised twenty minutes questions and answers, followed by oral and written feedback submitted by the business interviewers. 
The collated evaluation forms demonstrated the value and impact the students' felt at the end of the session: 
92% feeling more aware of their own strengths in what they could give a future employer 
86% now had an up to date CV 
93% improved their interview skills and the ability to present them in a positive manner 
82% increase in self confidence 
88% showed an improvement in communication and literacy skills 
97% said it was a valuable use of school time and 100% of students said that the business people they worked with provided a positive contribution to this event. 
Thank you to all the businesses that supported this event: 
Fujitsu, John French, Adobe, BT, VMware, KeepMoat 


St Bernard's Grammar school was a hive of activity when business volunteers and students participated in an interview day facilitated by Learning to Work. Prior to the event, students had applied for a post and submitted their CV and a covering letter. On the day, students engaged in a 20 minute one to one interview with volunteers from Adobe, John French Estates, LeasePlan and O2. This was followed by an individual debrief session where students were given feedback on their CV, covering letter, body language, responses and how they could improve their performance. 


The first of 6 workshops for Ditton Park Academy's year 7 and 8 students was held on 25th November 2015. This event focused on the skills and qualities that may be needed for the work place and ways we can begin to develop these skills. The students got involved in active discussions with business volunteer, Atif Baig from Thames Valley Chamber of Commerce, as well as working excellently in teams developing their communication and creative skills and their knowledge of jobs and employability. Learning to Work hope to offer continuous support to Ditton Park Academy with their careers education. 


Leading property, residential, construction and services group Kier, which employs 75 people from its regional offices on Old Bath Road in Newbury, has donated 30 pairs of safety boots to Learning to Work. We would like to thank Kier for their kind donation/contribution to help our students in their work related learning. 
Kier Boots Donation 
Nancy Lalor, Operations Manager, Learning to Work/ Simon Cook, Site Manager, Kier Construction/ Sorrell James, Lead Project Executive, Learning to Work/ Georgina Wilmott, Proposals Manager, Kier Construction. 
 To read more see the official press release  >  


We were once again pleased and honoured to be asked to participate in the National Apprenticeship Awards for 2015. Nancy Lalor our Operations Manager chaired the South West, Thames Valley & Solent Business Awards panel earlier this year and attended the finals on 22nd October at Wokefield Park, Reading. 
"The evening was a great success and showcased some of the many great business and apprentice ambassadors we have in our region. During the evening we heard from some exceptional employers and young people and celebrated the positive impact the apprenticeship programme has on both business and individuals. The evening had a great buzz and I am sure further inspired and motivated everyone present to carry on promoting and talking about the win win benefits to both employers and employees of the Apprenticeship programme" Nancy Lalor 


Learners received an overview of the company and absorbed just how quickly Equinix has evolved. The company was founded in 1998, by Al Avery and Jay Adelson; who recognised that existing data centres would not be sufficient to support the internet's rapid growth. This vision gave birth to a business now worth $2.44 billion. Early in 2015, Equinix opened five new data centres on four continents, which increased the company's global data centre footprint to more than 10 million square feet and were billed by the company as a significant expansion of its interconnection capacity. 
Learners appreciated the importance of Equinix adopting a project management framework (PRINCE 2), providing a resilient, reliable and secure service and the how critical metric and reporting are, as Peter Drucker said; "What gets measured, gets managed." 
One of the highlights for the students was a coveted tour of the latest data centre, a state of the art building with a massive capacity and still undergoing fitment was a very visual demonstration of how fast moving the industry is. 
After speed networking and learning about graduate and apprenticeship entry students reflected their learning in the form of presentations to the Equinix volunteers. The evaluation data evidences the impact of the day. 
100% of learners felt the business ambassadors they worked with provided a positive contribution to the activity. 
71% Felt more aware about employment and job options after leaving education 
76% Had a better understanding about the business visited and what they do 
Students' Comments: 
Speaking in front of the business gave me a chance to sell myself 
Great advice & inspirational 
Great insight into what happens at the data centre 
More details about apprenticeships would have been good 
The tour was interesting 
It was helpful to speak to the people at Equinix 
Lecturers' Comments: 
Tour really interesting - good mix of business & IT - well suited to attending leavers 
Tracey Jacques 
It was good to see apprenticeships represented in addition to graduate routes. Good level of details. Very interesting talks and tour. 
Carol Webster 


Working with CA Technologies to deliver their Create Tomorrow programme, British Airways and O2 to support delivery of the Think Big programme we engaged with business volunteers to bring the links between education and STEM careers even closer. Events like this help schools link STEM subjects with the world of work, helping them relate to career paths and interact with business ambassadors. These extra-curricular activities support learning and give young people the opportunity to hear first hand about some of the the exciting opportunities that studying science, technology, engineering and maths can open up.  
For full details, feedback and comments from Students, Teachers and Business Volunteers take a look at our Evaluation Flyer! 
Slough Express Business News