This month, a team of banking sector experts visited London South East Colleges’ Bromley and Orpington campuses to run workshops dealing with employability, work experience, CV building, and presentation.
The team of seven shared their expertise and experience of corporate and business banking and gave students practical tips about applying for jobs, putting together an impressive CV, interview buzzwords and preparation techniques. Most importantly, the team emphasised the need for each individual to build and manage a strong ‘personal brand’.
Students from a range of subject areas including business, accounting, IT, public services, hair and beauty, art, design, and media attended the workshops throughout the day took part in live discussions, question and answer sessions and interview role-plays.
Aryan, 19, from Bromley, is a level 2 business student who would like to work in banking after going to university. He came away from the workshop having discovered a ‘bigger picture’ of the career path he wishes to embark on and the standards he will need to reach and maintain in order to be successful. He said: “I’ve learned some great things today. The idea of creating a catalogue of my good qualities and unique selling points and communicating these effectively to potential employers and clients is very important. This workshop has made clear the kind of positive personal attributes I need to work on before I start applying for jobs.”
London South East Colleges offers all full-time students the opportunity to work towards a Career Advantage programme alongside studying their main course. This provides them with the crucial skills required by employers and universities to give them that all-important competitive edge. The programme focuses their attention on collecting social, employability, entrepreneurial, digital and IT skills. Throughout the year, the students work towards a portfolio of achievements in these areas and can achieve bronze, silver and gold awards. By participating, engaging and successfully feeding-back on the workshops, each student will be awarded their bronze medal.
Melody Fowler-Wright, from Lloyds Banking Group Retail Chief Operating Office, was a member of the team giving advice at the workshops. She said: “We really wanted to press the importance of students building a ‘brand’ for themselves to show employers. This means understanding their strengths, identifying the transferable skills built through school work, hobbies and part-time jobs; and ensuring their personal presentation and punctuality reinforces their personal brand.
"The students were very perceptive and had a huge amount of potential amongst them. We hope today helped all of them progress towards achieving their bronze awards and they will take their learnings forward to be successful in the workplace.”
This event was organised by the London South East Colleges’ Work Experience Department in partnership with Lloyds Banking Group. The College works with employers throughout London and the south-east to organise work experience programmes for students on all of its vocational programmes. This gives them the confidence to gain employment as well as acquiring the skills needed by employers in the region.