Oxfordshire passes work experience milestone – 70,000 and counting

As hundreds of school students across Oxfordshire get their first taste of the workplace this month, this National Work Experience Week (10th to 14th October) sees Oxfordshire Work Experience – a service from Oxfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership (OxLEP) - passing a major milestone. The team has now supported over 70,000 work experience placements in the county over the past 10 years, forging a vital link between schools, colleges and local employers as part of its mission to drive sustainable economic growth in Oxfordshire.

Work Experience Week aims to highlight and get people talking about the benefits of work experience. Through placements, students will gain experience of what it is like to be in the workplace, enhance their CV and develop skills they can then take to future employment, while employers can do their bit towards developing a future workforce with great employability skills and increase their brand awareness in the local community. The Oxfordshire Work Experience team helps to facilitate all types of work experience placements for young people in Oxfordshire.

Nigel Tipple, Chief Executive of OxLEP, said: “A well trained workforce is the life blood of every business and key to creating a strong and sustainable economy. Our ambition is to develop services that support young people through school and on into training and employment, while also meeting the needs of local businesses both now and into the future through a more integrated and responsive approach to education and training.”

Helen Haines, Manager of Oxfordshire Work Experience at OxLEP, commented: “We’re proud to help thousands of young people and employers with work experience every year and would like to thank all those Oxfordshire businesses that have helped support work experience placements over the past 10 years. We work with a great group of companies but we need more so we can offer tomorrows workforce a range of diverse and exciting opportunities that truly reflect our vibrant and successful economy. We’d encourage any businesses interested in offering work experience placements to get in touch to find out more. It’s a relatively straightforward process and the team can support you throughout” 

More than 3,500 Oxfordshire businesses are now registered to take on work experience placements with retail, care, science, technology, engineering and mathematics industries in high demand. In July, OxLEP, in partnership with Science Oxford, delivered an alternative approach to work experience through its Experience Science week, securing 40 placements for students from 12 schools with businesses including Diamond Light Source, John Radcliffe Hospital Department of Microbiology and Prodrive. This approach was developed to encourage young people to consider a career in science.

Businesses and students that have taken part in work experience are being encourage to share their experiences on social media with the hashtag #OxonWorkExperience.

Whether you’re an employer or school looking for more information on work experience, find out more on OxLEP’s website: http://www.oxfordshirelep.com/content/welcome-oxfordshire-work-experience or contact Helen Haines on Helen.Haines@oxfordshireLEP.com or 07785 453269.