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Planning a careers day

Tips for planning a successful careers event at your school


A careers day or evening is a great way of exposing your students to real industry professionals by bringing in community members, local business owners and parents to present to students on their industry and profession.

Events of this nature require a lot of time and resources, so it is suggested that a core organising committee is formed to assist in the planning and execution of the event.

As we are calling on external parties and parents to present it is also suggested that an event of this nature be held outside school and business hours.

Please see below some tips for organising a careers evening at your school:

  1. Assemble project team or organising committee - This can be a mix of senior teachers and year coordinators as well as anyone who wants to be involved. It’s important to get a mix of personalities and skillsets!
  2. Check school calendar for suitable dates to host function - From our experience Tuesday nights work best for employers and parents as typically social and business events are scheduled towards the end of the week.
  3. Devise list of industries - This will determine the speakers, resources and number of classrooms you will be required to book.
  4. Book a suitable location at your school - A building with groups of classrooms in close proximity to a main hall or auditorium would be ideal. You will need a large meet and greet area to welcome all guests with small class rooms for break out presentations.
  5. Seek relevant professional speakers from your network to deliver presentations - You may wish to contact parents through the school newsletter, use your or other staff members' personal contacts or contact large local employers, local chambers of commerce or industry associations for help.
  6. Promote event to students in relevant year group as well as their parents - Don’t under estimate the importance of an event of this nature. Ensure parents, teachers and the student body are all made well aware of the event and encouraged to attend. You may like to utilise school notice boards, use the school newsletter, or send an event-specific letter to parents to communicate the event.
  7. Student engagement - Prior to the evening it might be worthwhile to run a session with the students to get them to think about which industry/career presentations they want to attend so they can make the most of the experience. This can be done through surveys or even the Skillsroad Career Quiz.
  8. Brief speakers - Once your speakers are confirmed it is advised you prepare them with a brief sheet that outlines timings, dates, and  topics you wish them to cover such as what their job entails, skills required and education and training required. The more prepared your speakers are the more fulfilling the event experience will be for your students and their parents.
  9. Execution - Welcome guests, speakers and students and their parents in the main auditorium to outline the purpose of the evening. You may like to present your volunteer speakers with a gift or to thank them publicly. Then send presenters and students to their relevant class rooms for the industry presentations. Make sure these rooms are labelled and you have a map or floor plan. You may also like to run two sessions so students can attend two workshops. Please allow for questions and discussion at the end.
     
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