A day of interactive fun, career awareness, employer engagement and enterprising activities were enjoyed by almost 1,000 Pendle Year 9 secondary school students at Nelson and Colne College.

The annual Work Inspirations event organised in collaboration with Pendle Council, who fund the event, attracted 25 exhibitors from across a wide range of industry sectors. The day is designed to encourage students to think about their futures and realise the employment opportunities available to them on the doorstep in the borough.

Students from Colne Primet Academy, Marsden Heights Community College, Park High School, Pendle Vale College, Ss John Fisher and Thomas More RC High School and West Craven High School were encouraged to speak to employers to inspire and shape their future choices.

Year 9 student Kaiser Mathisen, 13, from Ss John Fisher and Thomas More RC High School in Colne, said: “I think Work Inspirations 2019 has been really good. I’ve discovered areas that I didn’t think I enjoyed really interesting and have very good career opportunities, such as building and construction, which I think I have a bit of a knack for.”

Debbie Gartland, Pastoral Team Leader at West Craven High School in Barnoldswick, said: “I think the event has been excellent for our current Year 9 students, and many of them have enjoyed visiting all of the different exhibitors. It was also great to see one of our former students on the Fagan & Whalley stand, who is now an Apprentice, so students could see the progression opportunities first-hand.

“Our students now have better awareness of what they are working towards as they come to pick their options for their GCSEs. The timing of the event has been perfect.”

Councillor Paul White, Leader of Pendle Council, said: “The Work Inspirations event continues to be a valuable event for the young people of the borough and businesses in Pendle. Once again it was brilliant to see the eyes of students opened to some of the fantastic and diverse range of companies we have in Pendle.

“It also plays an important role in raising the aspirations of Pendle’s young people, as well guiding them to focus their education and training towards an exciting career, as we help create a workforce that is ready for the future economy.”

Barton Hoyle is Technical Training Manager at Chubb Systems, who have a number of current and former Apprentices with Nelson and Colne College, and is an enthusiastic supporter of developing young talent.

He said: “This event was a great opportunity to raise awareness of Chubb Systems and what we do, the range of careers in STEM and the potential these careers have. It was also useful to promote the topics young people need to study and achieve in order to progress into a career in Engineering.

“Our stand had a number of challenging problem-solving games for the students to take part in and it was very encouraging to see some really bright young students do well with these. It was also very interesting to see how other students responded to setbacks in their strategy and the varied approaches taken in overcoming them. Solving problems is a significant part of successful Engineering.”

Exhibitors in attendance on the day were: April Hair Salon, Burnley FC in the Community, Chris Pugh Photography, Christina Clegg, Concept 4, Chubb Systems, Department for Work and Pensions, East Lancashire NHS Hospitals Trust, Fagan & Whalley Ltd, GS Social Care Solutions, Marks and Spencer, Pendle Borough Council, Royal Air Force, Refreshco, Scots Guards, Transport Training Academy, Vinci Construction, Lancashire Constabulary, Accrington and Rossendale College’s Catering Team and NCC’s Apprenticeship Team, Sport and Uniformed Services, Hair and Beauty, IT/Robotics, Extracurricular, and Science departments.

A Year 8, 9 and 10 Open Event will take place at Nelson and Colne College on Tuesday 30 April from 5.30pm until 7.30pm. This is a great chance to learn more about the college’s provision and extracurricular offer, to tour the campus and view its high-tech facilities, and meet expert tutors and members of the Careers Team. Visitors can also take part in a range of exciting ‘have a go’ activities and get a feel for life at the number one college in the country for 16-18 learner achievement.

For more information about Nelson and Colne College contact 01282 440272 or visit www.nelson.ac.uk