Careers Inspiration in Schools – Vauxhall Motors’ “The Candidate”

An initial meeting took place with Lealands & Lea Manor High School in Luton in September 2017. Upon meeting with both schools it became apparent that they needed to forge closer links with local employers to be able to give their young people the opportunity improve their employability skills and get them ready for the apprenticeships that maybe on offer to them.

To this end Develop met with Vauxhall Motors to discuss how they could become involved with the two schools and design a CPD project that would fulfil their needs (attracting local students to their apprenticeship programme) and met the schools identified needs.

Vauxhall Motors nominated two of their undergraduates to lead on the project (supported by their Community Projects Officer) and a teacher from each of the schools was nominated to design a project which will embed employability into the school curriculum.

A number of meetings were held and from this a project was designed which centred on Vauxhall Motors and their recruitment process and drew upon the experiences of their apprentices and undergraduates. It also enabled the teachers to link this process into their academic subjects.

The group decided to call the project “The Candidate” It is based on an activity day, at the Vauxhall Motors Plant in Luton, for forty-eight Year 9 students from each of the schools.

The day will be split into a number of sessions lead by Vauxhall staff. These will include for example CV writing, application form structure, skills workshop, assessment task based on the build of a van, misconception of job roles and mock Interviews. Each school will be split into teams with each team representing an employee at Vauxhall. Each team will compete in each session with the winning group getting ‘the job’ at the end of the day.

The resources that have been designed are age appropriate and will be able to be brought back into the school to enable employability skills to be embedded into the curriculum.

To ensure that the project can be used across the curriculum the teachers from each school will deliver a presentation to school staff in one of their staff meetings distributing hard resources to the relevant departments.  Vauxhall will also deliver an employability session to a smaller group of students who were unable to access the activity day in the New Year.

This project will engage students with a local employer and equip them with practical employability skills and a clearer understanding of the recruitment process for apprenticeships.The resources that will be designed can be taken back into school and embedded into the various curriculum areas .   It will provide the students with a greater understanding of the variety of roles within the sector and the different pathways to starting in these roles . It will be a sustainable project that be run on a yearly basis and run in conjunction with different curriculum areas. Going forward Vauxhall have agreed to offer this project to four other schools in Luton.

For more information on this project see CI Vauxhall movie The Candidate.

If you are an employer and would like to know more about the Careers Inspiration in Schools Programme then please contact Denise Moreau on

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