£150,000 to champion enterprise in education

The LEP has secured a further £150,000 from government to strengthen links between business and education and recruit more business volunteers to work with schools in the Leeds City Region.

Having successfully completed the government’s Enterprise Adviser Pilot, one of only five in the country, the LEP will now join the national roll out of the programme, led by the government’s Careers and Enterprise Company.

By working with business volunteers, known locally as “Enterprise Advisers,” the LEP aims to strengthen links between business and education and better equip young people with the core skills needed to join the workforce. The role of the Enterprise Adviser is to work with school leaders in an advisory capacity and help develop careers and enterprise activities for young people by forging links with local employers.

Stephanie Burras, Chair of the LEP’s Employment and Skills Panel said: “It is a great vote of confidence from government that the LEP has been chosen to join the first wave of this project with the new Careers and Enterprise Company.

“Having successfully delivered the pilot programme, signing up over 100 business volunteers and working with over a third of secondary schools in the region, we will continue to improve the relevance of learning within the City Region’s schools, colleagues, universities and other educational institutions.”

Working closely with the senior leadership teams in local schools, the Enterprise Advisers will support schools to develop their careers and enterprise strategies and create toolkits to support this work.

Councillor David Green, Deputy Chair of the LEP’s Employment and Skills Panel said: “This is a unique opportunity to link our schools and young people with experienced business leaders, willing to share their knowledge and skills.

“There is currently a disparity between the educational choices that young people are making and where the jobs vacancies exist now and will exist in the future. This programme is vital if we are to fully prepare our young people for the future labour market and ensure schools have the networks of support to get pupils work ready.”

Graham Sweeney, Operations Director at Schofield Sweeney, became an Enterprise Adviser to share his knowledge and experience with young people. He said: ‘The LEP scheme plays an important role in helping schools identify and develop the skills that will help their students stand out to employers, and provides a base for developing vocational skills later in their working career.

“Enterprise Advisers can play a central role in ensuring that students are not only equipped with the skills that employers are looking for, but widens their horizons to the diverse paths that are available to them as they progress beyond education. ‘

The Enterprise Adviser programme forms part of the LEP’s ambition to improve the relevance of learning to the economy and support business growth. Working with the government’s newly launched Careers and Enterprise Company, which has been set up as an employer led body to unlock the potential of Britain’s young people, the LEP will continue to engage with business leaders and schools alike.

The LEP is recruiting new volunteer business advisers from across the Leeds City Region who are passionate about supporting young people learn new skills and create a prosperous future.  For business leaders interested in supporting and developing talent in young people by sharing knowledge of entrepreneurship and working in a small business environment, contact the LEP today to find out more – enterpriseadvisers@the-lep.com or visit www.the-lep.com/skills