Career Ready

Career Ready

Megan Harrington, our Career Ready student of the year award winner, visited New York as a result of her great achievements. Check out the video here:

Fifteen students, from Cardiff and Vale College headed to London in December 2014 where they were given ‘behind the scenes’ access to one of the biggest law firms and influential employer in the world, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer.

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer gave our students a tour of their London offices with Q&A sessions. These students, many from diverse backgrounds and areas of social need who would not normally have access to such opportunities and were thrilled at this opportunity.

At a time when young people are struggling to secure employment and a good knowledge of the workplace is more crucial than ever, the event was a fantastic opportunity for students to practice networking and find out more about the kind of skills major employers such as Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer are seeking.

After the visit, our students made their way to The IndigO2 at the O2 Arena, where they will had the chance to network with other young people from across the country taking part in the programme and participating in business-related activities to boost their employability skills, led by motivational speaker Action Jackson.

During the afternoon, they also received valuable advice from speakers including The Apprentice finalist Claire Young, Career Academies UK Chief Executive James McCreary, and former Career Academy student Emmanuel Akintunde and get the chance to watch entertainment from the sensational group Bollywood Dance London.

Most of these students had never visited London before and to say they were in awe of this of this visit, was an understatement.

All Career Academy students have now been offered 6 week paid internships at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer this Summer


• Cardiff & Vale College has been affiliated with Career Academies UK since 2009.

• Career Academies UK is a national charity that links education with business to prepare young people for the world of work.

• Through our partnership with Career Academies UK we provide a structured programme of internships, mentoring by employee volunteers, master classes and workplace visits.

• The aim of the programme is to give 16-19 year olds the work experience and skills they need to be able to perform more effectively in the wider world.

• Our Career Academy is part of a national network of more than 150 schools and colleges across the UK.

• So far we have had many students who have graduated from the Cardiff & Vale College Career Academy.

• Over 85% of Career Academy graduates nationally progress either to university - often the first in their family to do so - or directly into employment or work based learning such as apprenticeships or school leaver programmes.

• The Career Academy programme helps us to meet the latest Government and Ofsted standards for careers guidance – “Schools should provide sustained contacts with employers, mentors and coaches who can inspire pupils with a sense of what they can achieve and help them understand how to make this a reality”

• We are always looking for more businesses and individuals to offer their support to our Career Academy by:

o Becoming a mentor – either face-to-face mentoring or e-mentoring

o Joining our Local Advisory Board

o Delivering a master class to students on a particular topic, for example “Writing your CV” or “Effective networking”

o Offering a four to six week paid internship over the summer

Take a look at the 2016/17 Career Ready Calendar:


For more information about the Career Academy at Cardiff and Vale College please contact:

Tracy Bird - Career Academy & Skills Shop Coordinator:

Tel:  029 20406509


LAB Members:

Ben Cottam – Chair of LAB, Head of ACCA Cymru/Wales
Simon Page – Career Academies UK
Tracy Bird – Careers Academy Co-ordinator
James Cummings – Business Development Officer Cardiff and Vale College
Debbie Jones – HOD Business, Finanance & IT
Fiona Tierny – Deputy HOD Business, Finance & IT
Marlene Harries – Local CEO South East Wales National Westminster Bank
Louise Bricknell – Head of HR Openreach
Rebecca Davies – Relationship Director, Barclays Corporate Banking
Steve Pember – Head of Colleague Engagement and Insight, Lloyds Bank
Hayley Rees – Personal Banker Santander
Mark Edwards – Technical Director, Capital Networks
Cath Falcus – Deputy Head Teacher, Cardiff High School
Emma Waddingham – Director, Emma Waddingham Consulting
Gabrielle Taylor – Consumer Finance Lloyds Banking Group