Business students have told how getting the chance to learn from industry professionals will “open doors” to their future careers.
The students are all members of the Business Management Career Academy at the College of Haringey, Enfield and North East London (CONEL) run in partnership with Career Ready.
The Academy gives students the chance to learn and gain advice from mentors from a wide range of employers in the business and finance sector to improve their job prospects.
It also runs work placement programmes with the employers, many of whom work for high profile companies in the City.
Students took part in an ice-breaker in which they had to get a straw through a potato before starting to complete their Career Ready log books, which help prepare them for applying for jobs and the modern workplace.
Malvinas Lukosius, 18, and Gulseren Halil, 17, who are both studying a Business 90 Credit Diploma, both signed up to the Academy.
Malvinas said: “I had friends on the programme last year who spoke very highly of it.
“It will be good to get guidance and a second opinion from them, and learn how my mentor got to the position she is at now and the steps she took to get there."
Gulseren said: “I see it as a good opportunity to get guidance from experienced people in business and I am hoping it will open doors.
“It’s been good to be able to express my feelings about deciding which direction to go in, and gain knowledge and guidance from my mentor’s past experience.”
Career Ready is a UK-wide charity that has been linking businesses with schools and colleges to help young people gain skills for employment since 2002.
The programme also benefits the employers in being able to talent and develop young people’s skills to give them a head start in their careers.
Student mentor Adeena Wells, a trainee solicitor at international law firm Bird & Bird LLP, said: “It makes me happy to be able to help others, which is the reason I embarked on a career in the law profession.
“It is important to provide young people with opportunities, as they may have potential but need help and guidance to help them to achieve it.”
Anne-Marie Fernandes, Business Controls Manager at Santander, was also keen to pass on her knowledge to students from the Academy.
“I would like to have benefited from these opportunities at the student’s age and had the chance to seize the opportunities and take advantage of them,” she said.
“The potential for creating long lasting relationships can be rewarding for both parties.”