Celebration event to mark Raising Aspirations programme

Celebration event to mark Raising Aspirations programme

An awards lunch was held at the Wey Valley School in Weymouth to recognise eleven students and thank volunteers from the local business community who have supported the mentoring programme.

The ‘Raising Aspirations’ project was piloted at the school and its aim was to raise career aspirations, improve confidence and develop self -belief in young people.  The scheme has been funded from a successful grant application submitted by The Dorset Community Foundation to The Goldsmiths’ Company.  The school has been working in partnership with the Dorset Community Foundation and Dorset Youth Association to deliver the programme. 

Local business volunteers came from a variety of backgrounds and included Managers Jim Williams, Neil Garbutt, Scott Hammond and Andy Hamlin from ASM Assembly Systems, Mary Hogarth, media specialist from ‘themagazineexpert.com’ , Mark Blunden Director at Futurum Renewable Energy Systems,  Kim Pile, Legal Executive at Pengillys Solicitors, Emily Pykett, Social Media Service provider from ‘Socially Dorset’, Shenis Cant, owner of the Weymouth Art Café,  and Verity Woodgate  from Print ‘n’ Press.

Anna Hines Progress Co-ordinator at Wey Valley who has managed the programme, said: ‘ the students have really enjoyed the programme and positive outcomes have included one student securing a job for the Summer holidays and another working with her mentor on a project over the Summer for a top creative/digital consultancy company in Bournemouth’.  

Student Kai Hartley in Year 10 stated:  ‘Before I started the programme  I didn’t know anything about engineering, but thanks to the support from my mentor I have been on a tour of ASM and found out about the apprenticeship opportunities available as well as the many different areas which I am interested in and how they can lead to a career path.’

Mrs Hines added: ‘I am really proud of the students and the progress they have made.  It has been incredibly rewarding watching their progress.    I have enjoyed working with the Mentors and would like to thank them for their time and support.’

Ms Sara Adams, Acting Principal at Wey Valley added: ‘I would like to thank the Business volunteers for their support and time with our students. The feedback from mentors and students has been excellent.   Our students are excited about the future opportunities available to them in the working world and we hope to expand these tremendous opportunities to more and more students in school.’

The programme will be continuing from September and due to its success will also be running at the Blandford School.  If you are interested in volunteering to be a mentor, please contact Anna Hines on 01305 817018 or email HinesA@weyvalley.dorset.sch.uk