Why you should get involved in the Search for a Star programme: a teacher’s perspective

To mark the start of this year’s Search For A Star, we spoke to Nicola Anderson, Head of Careers at Trinity Academy, Doncaster. This autumn, Trinity students will be participating in our S4AS programme for the fourth year running, and Nicola can’t speak positively enough of their involvement to date.

‘Our students don’t always know what they want to do after they have finished at school,’ Nicola says, ‘but this programme has been brilliant as it has broad interest, appealing to a wide range of students. Some are interested in pursuing a vocational path, for example, as a vehicle technician, or a more academic path in, say, the IT and Technology side of the Automotive industry.’

The S4AS is Burrows Motor Company’s Apprentice Recruitment Programme, designed, organised and facilitated by Gaia Innovation. We work with schools throughout North and South Yorkshire and Nottinghamshire, and are proud to have recruited 33 apprentices to date. A local family-owned dealer group, Burrows aims to support its community by recruiting, developing and hiring young apprentices to join the automotive industry from local schools.

Nicola believes that the stand-out feature of Search For a Star is the opportunity for students to have real-life encounters and experience with the world of work, for example, through the job application process and work experience that form part of the programme. ‘Students learn key transferable skills through the Employability Skills Training Days as well as being hands-on during the week of Work Experience,’ says Nicola. ‘They also learn enduring life skills such as dealing with competition, and learning from experience to move forward if they are not lucky enough to be selected at the end of the process.’

We asked Nicola if she had a memorable moment from her past 4 years of involvement in S4AS. She mentioned a student who, prior to the programme, hadn’t had any clear career plans. Nicola says ‘When she was selected, she was completely ecstatic – it was brilliant for us, as teachers, to see her develop such drive and ambition through her participation in this programme. I really can’t recommend it highly enough.’

If you would like your school to get involved in Gaia Innovation’s Search For A Star Programme, please email [email protected].