Alumni network for Tower Hamlets school-leavers to tackle youth unemployment
PUBLISHED: 18:21 02 December 2015 | UPDATED: 18:21 02 December 2015
TH EBP PR
An ambitious ‘Alumni’ network has been set up to tackle east London’s youth unemployment by helping school-leavers make contacts that could get them into careers.
Anyone who has been to a Tower Hamlets school or college can sign up to get career help, work experience, join networking events and even a pathway to jobs.
The network was launched last night by Tower Hamlets Education Business Partnership to help bridge the gap from school to work, by extending the ‘employability’ programmes it runs in primary and secondary schools.
“The Alumni Network aims to reduce youth unemployment,” the Education Partnership’s director Helen Sanson explains. “It can be hard to find a job without access points to the world of work, regardless of qualifications, not least because many jobs go unadvertised.
“But we are ideally placed to give a helping hand because of our connections with both businesses and schools—it’s a ready-made talent pool for career recruiters.”
At its hub is a LinkedIn group with Alumni ‘ambassadors’ arranging events who are also the points of contact for school-leavers.
But the new Alumni network is also to “give back to the community” through volunteering and mentoring for anyone who has made it successfully in the world of work.
One ‘ambassador’, Mohammad Khan, said: “I was lucky to have a mentor during my sixthform which brought the world of work alive for me and helped shape my career path.
“It’s a way to make contact with different people which could be crucial getting on the first rung of the career ladder.”
Yesterday’s Alumni Network launch had 100 A-Level pupils from east London, past students, head teachers and business people.
Daniel Hunter, Head of Communications at Nomura Bank which hosted the event, told them: “Every school-leaver has a huge number of potential options. But finding what you wish to do, getting the support you need doesn’t happen by accident.
“You need a support network—ultimately it comes down to people and relationships.”
Network volunteers help with career events or give talks at local schools and organise school reunions.