Over 500 Cumbrian employers help thousands of students with careers skills

18th July 2022

Thousands of students across Cumbria are being given vital skills to help them find jobs thanks to a range of businesses across the county.

Through our The Link programme over 500 Cumbrian employers, there have been involved with more than 23,000 positive impacts with students in Cumbria.

In Carlisle, there have been 66 events during the last two years, with more than 125 SME and larger businesses involved.

On Monday 11th July, 38 employees from various Carlisle businesses took part in the latest The Link project event at William Howard School, Brampton, near Carlisle to help Year 12 students with mock interviews.

Steve Balmer, Managing Director of David Allen Financial Services, was among the employers giving up their time to help students.

Steve said: "He’s keen to show young people in Cumbria that there are exciting and rewarding career opportunities on their doorstep. It’s been a very difficult two years for young people and they may be anxious about conversing with different age groups.

Many won’t have had any experience of interviews or any clue as to what career they might want to pursue.

As a managing director one of my greatest satisfactions is seeing someone come through the businesses and for their career to blossom.

Helping them with mock interviews is one of the ways we can support them. It’s very rewarding to give something back. I have been in the industry for 25 years. It has given me a good career. But we need new faces to come into the industry.”

In terms of interview advice, Steve said he was happy to pass on any tips he could to young people across the county to help them with their careers.

“It’s important to have a CV which stands out, but that only gets you into the interview. Once there it’s important to be yourself. I would say as well as talking about your strengths it’s good to also talk about areas where you feel you need to develop as well - it’s a sign of strength, not weakness and shows honesty and integrity.”

The Link is part of our programme to support people to access jobs and upskilling opportunities across Cumbria and Lancashire.

Tracey Hill, Career Lead at William Howard School, said: “This is a fantastic opportunity for young people to practice interview questions with local professionals. We understand how busy businesses are and so grateful for the time they give to The Link to make this happen.

We have held a number of events over the academic year with a wide variety of businesses coming into school and young people have really benefited from meeting such a range of local people doing such a wide range of careers in our community.”
Susan Watkins, our Area Operations Manager for North Cumbria said: “Working in partnership with businesses to make a positive difference to young people’s lives is very rewarding. It helps young people develop the skills they need to secure employment or training.

We couldn’t do it without the hundreds of businesses who support us and our projects, and all the education providers and young people who engage with the programme.

We are delighted with the results we achieve through this true partnership working.”

Inspira is committed to building an inclusive future for all young people and promotes economic, social, and environmental sustainability.

If you'd like to find out more or are a business who would like to get involved with The Link, please contact deborah.naylor@inspira.org.uk