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Meadowhead School

Meadowhead SchoolAcademy Trust

Careers Advice and Guidance

Please take a look at the resources and information on this page.

If you have any questions or would like to talk through your plans with a careers adviser, please contact careers@meadowhead.sheffield.sch.uk or phone school and ask for the Careers Team.

Further Education and Careers Progression Routes - a guide to the comprehensive support that students will receive during the two years in our sixth form (ipad users can download a copy at the foot of this page)

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Please click the arrow on the right of each box to expand each topic and explore more.

Career Exploration

Career exploration

Find out about yourself and explore the careers that might suit you.             

  • If you have some ideas about a career or job sector you are interested in, start your research there.
  • If you don't know which jobs interest you, you could start with a careers quiz (examples below) to give you some ideas.
  • Use the suggested resources below as a starting point, but feel free to use your own sources too, just make sure you use reliable sources of information which are up-to-date, free from bias and relevant (ie about opportunities for young people in England).
  • Career Companion is the school’s online careers library featuring hundreds of reliable websites: https://bespoke.careercompanion.co.uk/libraries/index

It is useful to find out the following information:

  • what the job involves
  • the skills you need
  • qualifications you need to get in
  • practicalities (pay, working hours etc)
  • find three positives about the job for you
  • identify any aspects that sound more negative or you need more information on
  • finally, decide whether you think this job would suit you.

See Virtual Experience and Labour Market Information to find out if a job is in demand or disappearing; which are the jobs of the future and what you might get paid.

Suggested resources

Quizzes (general)

Quizzes (specific job sectors)

Talks, Events & Competitions

Career Information (general)

General career research sites include www.prospects.ac.uk and https://nationalcareers.service.gov.uk/explore-careers .

Go to Career Companion https://bespoke.careercompanion.co.uk/libraries/index, select Y12 and Careers and Subjects to explore hundreds of websites linked to your subject or job interests.

Watch clips of people talking about their jobs

Careers information (specific job sectors)

If you can't find the job sector you are looking for, use the general resources above.

Super-Curricular Programme activities 

Post-18 Pathways

Post-18 Pathways

Start exploring the post-18 options that might interest you after sixth form. Make a note of which resources you use and anything that might be useful for your future plans

University options

Apprenticeships

Higher & Degree Apprenticeships

National Apprenticeship Week (NAW) Events

Gap year

College courses for 18+

Self-employment

Super-Curricular Programme activities

Preparing for the Future

Preparing for the Future

To be prepared for your next steps, it helps to learn about your own strengths and skills, find out how to write a CV and how to approach an interview. You can try out a virtual interview to put your skills into practice. 

Think about how you could use networks through LinkedIn or social media to get you closer to the jobs you want to do.  Find out about your rights in the workplace and what ‘good’ work means to you.

Building your Employability Skills

Do you need to develop your skills to strengthen a future application to university or work? If you have struggled to find workplace experience, don’t give up, but don’t discount the things you do at school or home. Try these resources to build your skills further.

CV-Writing and Success at Interview
Step 1: Watch both of the workshop videos, Recognising Strengths and Interview Skills (attached below).

Step 2: Try out your new-found interview skills with a Barclays Lifeskills virtual interview (link below). If you haven't used this site before, you will need to register.

Step 3: Take a look at the CV tips on the Success at School website (link below), then use the CV template (document below) to try writing your own.

Your Online Presence

Find out how to use LinkedIn to make contact with professional and students in your chosen areas of work or study.

Social media hints & tips:

Rights and responsibilities at work

What is ‘good’ work? What is success?

 

Super-curricular Activities

Super-curricular activities

Activities participated in during your own time, over and above your school studies, which relate to the field of study and/or employment you intend to explore (e.g. webinars, wider reading, MOOCs, lectures, podcasts, museum/gallery visits, trips to sites of special scientific or historical interest, etc.). Applicants for the most competitive university courses, e.g. Oxbridge, Medicine or Veterinary, should explore as many super-curricular options as possible. Use your summers wisely!

Super-curricular activities can:

  • Help prepare you for the course/career you want to pursue
  • Develop key skills and knowledge so that the step up to a competitive course isn’t as much of a shock
  • Make your application stand out in a competitive field

Suggestions for further study

Try the links below to explore your chosen field in more detail than the average student. Many of these suggestions come from our colleagues at the University of Cambridge, who also suggest keeping a reading journal of extra sources and resources you have discovered. Happy exploring!

 

HE+ (University of Cambridge programme to support state school students)

https://www.undergraduate.study.cam.ac.uk/find-out-more/widening-participation/he-plus

Staircase 12 (University of Oxford programme supporting applications to top universities)

https://www.univ.ox.ac.uk/applying-to-univ/staircase12/

Future Learn (flexible online courses from top universities)

https://www.futurelearn.com/

Coursera (free online courses from leading international universities)

https://www.coursera.org/

JSTOR (free access to thousands of academic articles)

https://www.jstor.org/

BBC Radio 4 Podcasts (podcasts of programmes on wide range of subjects)

https://www.bbc.co.uk/podcasts/radio4

MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses)

https://www.mooc.org/

TED Talks (lectures on every conceivable topic)

https://www.ted.com/talks

Podcasts (e.g. available on Apple, Spotify)

e.g. https://www.wired.co.uk/article/best-podcasts

Nature (journal)

https://www.nature.com/

New Scientist

https://www.newscientist.com/

The Economist

https://www.economist.com/

Times Literary Supplement

https://www.the-tls.co.uk/

Oxford Very Short Introductions

https://www.veryshortintroductions.com/

Advanced Mathematics Support Programme

https://amsp.org.uk/

I Want to Study Engineering

https://i-want-to-study-engineering.org/

Nrich Maths Support

https://nrich.maths.org/

Isaac Physics

https://isaacphysics.org/

Virtual Experience and the Labour Market

Virtual experience and the labour market

These tasks relate to building experience and understanding the job market.

Labour market information (LMI) tells us which jobs are in demand or disappearing; what kinds of salaries we can expect; opportunities in a particular city or region; or routes into particular careers.

LMI is particularly important right now as we try to make sense of changes to work due to the pandemic and Brexit. Find out about the fourth industrial revolution and what it means for your future. Using LMI wisely can help you to future-proof your career. You can get support to make sense of LMI from the Careers Team at school.

Building experience

Barclays Life Skills (general experience)

https://barclayslifeskills.com/i-want-virtual-work-experience/school/virtual-work-experience

Spend an hour experiencing work at a digital agency. Freeformers is a UK-based digital transformation agency that helps companies and organisations embrace technology, digital products and skills. You'll need to register on Barclays LifeSkills to get started (follow the link above).

Time (up to 1 hour)


Watch work experience programmes on BBC iPlayer

You may need to register if you don’t have BBC iPlayer already. Although these series are focused on entertaining the audience, they do provide some useful insight into job roles and the workplace.

Rhod Gilbert Work Experience

https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00zf3m1

The 9 to 5 with Stacey Dooley

https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p06zhf9j

It’s not too late to:

Find virtual work experience

Some of the work experience opportunities on the ideas list (tinyurl.com/yast556n) are still open for application or are for self-directed study at any time. It’s not too late to take part. You could also book in for events taking place later in the year.

Book in for company insight days

Search online for company insight days where you get to hear more about a company, their values and their opportunities; a great way to find out if a company is right for you. These are more common with larger companies. You can search on company websites or websites like www.studentladder.co.uk or www.allaboutschoolleavers.co.uk. A good alternative if you have struggled to find experience.

Plan ahead for summer experience

Look out for university summer schools or work-based summer experiences in a wide range of job sectors (creative, performing arts, science, engineering, heritage etc): see Summer Schemes 2021.

The labour market

Quick watch/read:

Dig deeper:

  • South Yorkshire LMI Update (Feb 2021) (see doc below)
  • The Future of Work (see doc below)
  • What do graduates do? 2020-2021 (graduate destinations): https://luminate.prospects.ac.uk/what-do-graduates-do

See LMI on https://bespoke.careercompanion.co.uk/libraries/index for more resources. You shouldn’t need to log-in to Career Companion; if it asks for this, please select Student Login on www.meadowhead.sheffield.sch.uk and click on the Career Companion logo that appears in the student portal.

Y12 Summer Schemes


What could you be doing during Summer 2021?
Some schemes may be different this summer due to the pandemic

Your summer activities could include:

  • Workwise Engineering Summer Camp

Build employability skills, meet engineering employers and develop experience of work on this Sheffield-based scheme: https://work-wise.co.uk/for-young-people.

See also:

    • Sheffield Theatres Summer School:

www.sheffieldtheatres.co.uk (search for summer school)

    • Museum Youth (ongoing activities with Sheffield Industrial Museums Trust)

http://www.simt.co.uk/get-involved/museum-youth

    • St Luke’s Hospice Summer School:

Enquire in Careers Office from spring onwards (TBC)

    • Site Gallery Society of Explorers (ongoing activities with artists and creatives)

www.sitegallery.org/projects/young-producers-programme/

    • AMRC Manufacturing Camp:

https://amrctraining.co.uk/whats-on

    • BFI Film Academy (ongoing activities)

https://www.bfi.org.uk/bfi-film-academy-opportunities-young-creatives               

  • PWC Business Insight Week

Paid one-week work experience working on business-related projects with PWC.

www.pwc.co.uk/careers/student-careers/school-careers/our-programmes/insight-weeks.html

See also schemes with firms like Grant Thornton, C4 or City law firms like BLP Law

  • Nuffield Research Placements

Work on a project alongside scientists and other STEM professionals for 4-6 weeks in the summer holidays.

www.nuffieldfoundation.org/nuffield-research-placements

See also EDT’s Headstart, Engineering Education Scheme or Exscitec

  • Sutton Trust US Programme

The Sutton Trust US programme gives bright, state school students a taste of life at an American university.

https://us.suttontrust.com/

Sutton Trust also offer UK-based summer programmes.

What are your choices?

Academic summer schools or university taster days

More in-depth than an open day, these should give you the chance to experience a little of university study and university life. Use search websites like www.mystudentevents.com or www.summer-schools.info. Most of these websites aren’t exhaustive, so use more than one to make sure you’re not missing out on opportunities. You should also search on the websites of universities you are interested in finding out more about.

Work-based summer experiences

Where to find opportunities?

  • Check the websites of royal societies or professional bodies for your area of interest eg Royal Society of Chemistry or RIBA (Royal Institute of British Architects).
  • If you are interested in working for a large company, check their website or approach them direct. Smaller firms are less likely to have a formal scheme, but might offer you work shadowing or work experience if you approach them direct.
  • Try http://studentladder.co.uk/Work-Experience/work-experience.html and www.allaboutschoolleavers.co.uk.
  • Search online for insight days and insight weeks, as well as work experience or summer placements.

Other options

Other ideas to explore include part-time work or volunteering (www.vinspired.com, www.do-it.org, NHS volunteering: https://www.sth.nhs.uk/work-for-us/volunteering or www.sheffieldchildrens.nhs.uk/about-us/careers-and-opportunities/volunteering), entering competitions (http://studentladder.co.uk/Competition/competitions.html) or attending university or Royal Society public lectures or masterclasses. If you want to build even more experience, you could consider a gap-year scheme like Year in Industry (www.etrust.org.uk/the-year-in-industry)

Check the details

You’ll need to pay close attention to

  • entry criteria
  • closing dates
  • length of programme
  • where it is based.

Check whether it is a residential or day scheme, and check any additional costs.

Even if there is an advertised cost, there may be bursaries available for some students, particularly if you are eligible for free school meals or you’re the first in your family to go to university. If you are applying to a non-traditional option eg women into engineering; first in family to go to university, there may be specialist schemes you can apply for, or additional financial support you might be eligible for.

Some of the bigger schemes can be highly competitive with closing dates around the New Year or early spring, so start early to avoid missing out.

The benefits

Experiences like these should give you the chance to learn something new; test out your career and university ideas; develop your skills; meet like-minded people; build your CV and make yourself stand out.

Ask in the Careers Office if you want to find out more

All of the above can be downloaded as PDF documents (links below)