Life after Colfe’s
An all-years’ careers’ programme
If the school environment actively promotes thinking about what you enjoy and where you have skills, then the big decisions are easier to make when it comes to GCSE, A-level, degree and career choices.
The vast majority of leavers from Colfe’s go on to higher education, whether at university or at a specialist college for Music, Art or Drama; in the UK or abroad. Other students may prefer to learn on the job – getting qualified, getting paid and gaining real-world experience. Apprenticeship schemes may accept lower A-level grades than university but the selection process is highly competitive.
At Colfe’s we start talking about careers in Year 7 and gradually increase our careers activities every year. By the time it comes to Year 13, we are able to provide more tailored careers guidance, helping every student reach their potential.
Here’s an example of what is included in our current careers’ programme, but is does vary and is updated as we find out about new opportunities for our students:
Year 7: Careers of the future, including growth areas such as green technology and AI.
Year 8: Looking at personality types and how this could be a helpful key to future choices. Students also start to collate their personal careers information at this point.
Year 9: Morrisby Aspirations quiz, which matches interests and ambitions with potential careers and university degrees. This is saved for future use. Advice and guidance given on GCSE choices.
Year 10: The full Morrisby psychometric profile which matches interests and aptitudes with potential careers. This is followed up with a one-to-one careers’ guidance session by a trained external and impartial careers adviser.
Year 11: Guidance about post 16 options including work experience, preparing CVs and choices of A-levels leading to different degree and apprenticeship choices. Students are also actively encouraged to seek further one-to-one support and guidance from the Head of Careers.
- Introduction to the range of post-18 options and given information on where to start their research.
- Weekly timetabled lesson supporting students onto the next stage and this includes writing or updating their CVs, applying for work experience, alternatives to university, and many other sessions.
- Careers talks as part of our Forum programme covering gap years, university finance, choosing the right university, apprenticeships and many more. These are delivered by external speakers.
- Spring term individual interview with an external careers adviser to give more support and guidance in taking the next step.
- Encouragement to research their choices thoroughly and go on in person or online university taster days and visits.
- Medics programme, Oxbridge programme and support for overseas university applicants – all of these options are open to any students in Year 12.
- Competitive university applications evening for parents and also a general UCAS information for parents and students.
- Work experience programme in which Old Colfeians and our other contacts offer work placements during the holidays. Students are invited to apply for these placements.
- We also use an online work experience provider to enable more students to be able to access employer experiences.
- UCAS programme – a parents’ meeting explaining how we provide support through this exciting but sometimes daunting process is followed by sessions in which you will learn about:
- Writing a Personal Statement
- Getting the best use out of university open days
- Managing your money
- Making the most of the skills you have acquired in life so far
- Using Unifrog, which helps with university application by keeping all research and personal statement drafts in one place
- Each student has a personal tutor to help with the application process and write references.
We also hold a Careers Fair every two years, where advisers provide pupils in years 10 to 13 with information about careers, universities and apprenticeships. The most recent Careers Fair was held online, with more than 50 speakers from a diverse range of sectors and professions – including parents and Old Colfieans – attending the event:
Accountancy, Actuary/Insurance Architecture, Arts/Theatre and Film, Art (Market/Museums/Academia), Aviation, Branding/Design, Business Psychology, Civil Service (Finance and FCO), Chemical Engineering, Cloud Architecture, Commercial Property, Corporate Finance, Counselling, Cybersecurity, Dentistry/Orthodontics, Emergent Technologies, Entrepreneurship, Film/TV Production and Content, Financial Services, Financial Technology, Fund Management, Heavy Chemical Industry, Hospitality, Human Resources, Information Technology, International Development/Disaster Relief, Internet Marketing/Social Media, Investment Banking, Investor Relations, Law, Medicine, NHS, Patent Attorney, Pharmacy/Prison Services, PR and Marketing, Property Development/Management, Research Science, Supermarket Retail/Foodservice and Tech Media.