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Work experience

The work experience programme at UTC Reading is designed for Year 10 and Year 12 students; it is not compulsory but highly recommended for students during their time at UTC Reading.

There are a huge number of benefits for students to undertake work experience; not only can they develop their employability and technical skills within a specific subject area of interest, they will gain first hand industry experience. By going on work experience, students can begin to build professional networks, which will only strengthen future career prospects and applications.

We recommend that students have at least one weeks-worth of meaningful and relevant work experience in both years. It is, however, the student’s responsibility to actively seek their own work experience placement. Whilst we support students, where possible, in obtaining a placement, we appreciate that not all students will be able to secure themselves a placement. Because of this, we provide a number of other opportunities throughout the academic year for students to engage with employers. We run our Experience Programme at KS4 and our Pipeline Programme at KS5, where students can have up to four encounters with employers in one academic year. This could provide the students with up to eight employer encounters by the end of a key stage.

Allocated Dates for Work Experience Week(s): WC 29th June 2020 or WC 6th July 2020

There are a variety of ways that students can source a work experience placement:

Self-Placement Route

This is where students source their own work experience placement and is the most likely way of a student gaining a placement. This requires the students and parents to complete and gather the following documentation (copies attached below):

  • Self-Placement Form, including consent signatures from the student, parent and employer
  • A copy of the employers’ liability insurance certificate

Once I have received the above, I will make communication with the main contact from the employer in order for them to complete a Health & Safety form. This is to ensure that the placement complies with Health and Safety regulations and to ensure that our students are safeguarded whilst offsite.

Here are some suggested websites that can help students find work experience placements:

Work Finder: https://www.workfinder.com/

S4S Next Gen: https://www.s4snextgen.org/

LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com

Through a relative or family friend 

Sourced Placements

This is where opportunities arise from the college, in which we take the lead with organisation of the placement. Please note: these placements are rare, and we do not have a bank of placements to provide every student with a work experience opportunity. Any placements via this route will be distributed by means of email to the students, therefore I would recommend that they check their emails regularly. We also post any work experience opportunities of this type on our UTC Reading Careers Twitter . This type of placement requires the parent to give consent, usually via email from myself or another member of the careers team. The college will ensure that Health and Safety forms, and employer Liability Insurance Certificates are in place.

Pipeline Programme (Year 12 Students ONLY)

Students have been placed with an industry partner throughout their time in Year 12 and will have had four pipeline days with these employers during this academic year. Some of these industry partners will be offering students work experience placements based on several factors throughout the programme, for example; student attendance to the sessions, engagement and attitude. For those that are offering a placement, the students will be made aware internally and they will have to go through the application process to secure the placement. This route is not a guaranteed way of students obtaining work experience at the end of the academic year, and therefore they may wish to start exploring alternative routes.

Useful resources

UCAS Importance of Work Experience

https://www.ucas.com/connect/blogs/work-experience-important

Parental Guidance Importance of Work Experience

http://www.parentalguidance.org.uk/gaining-skills-experience/the-importance-of-work-experience

All About Careers Why Work Experience Is Important

https://www.allaboutcareers.com/careers-advice/work-experience/why-is-work-experience-important

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