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The first virtual Tees Valley Careers Expo has today (March 18) been hailed a huge success, with more than 1,000 students taking part in the live event to learn about all of the career opportunities on offer in our region’s businesses.
A total of 74 employers, college and sixth form staff and apprenticeship providers signed up for the event, including some of the region’s biggest employers such as the GlaxoSmithKline, Visualsoft, EDF, Fujifilm, Cubic and Venator.
The event included live Q&As, workshops, virtual tours and exhibition stands and was designed to inform, inspire and help young people from school years 7 to 13 make the best decisions about their future – whether that be further or higher education or entering the world of work or undertaking training.
This year’s Expo was the ninth of its kind but the first to take place entirely online as a response to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The number of attendees will only increase as the event, including the workshops, exhibitions, resources and quizzes will be available online and updated weekly until the end of the school year, so those who couldn’t make the live event will still have a chance to catch up.
It came just days after it was announced that the 1,000th business had pledged its support to the £3million TeesValleyCareers.com initiative, established by Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen. Award-winning Hartlepool logistics firm Hogg Global Logistics is supporting the scheme in giving the region’s 100,000 young people up to seven meaningful engagements with employers.
Mayor Houchen said: “It was a massive shame, but unavoidable, that we had to cancel last year’s careers event due to coronavirus but this has given us the time to come back with a new virtual event.
“It is vital that young people across Teesside, Darlington and Hartlepool continue to receive a host of information on their future careers and how they can get into good-quality, well-paid jobs right here at one of our brilliant businesses. Whether it’s talking to employers from all different sectors to find out how they can get started on the job ladder out of school, talking to one of our great colleges about continuing in education or looking at training or apprenticeships, this event had something for everyone.
“It’s also incredibly helpful for our companies to meet the workforce of the future, to be able to talk about all the exciting things happening in their businesses and highlight what they are looking for to help them grow.
“No matter what form the Expo takes in the future, I’m sure it’ll continue to be valuable for everyone who attends.”
Cllr Bob Cook, Tees Valley Combined Authority Cabinet Lead for Education, Employment and Skills, said: “It’s never too early for our students to be thinking about their life choices and how they can earn a good living and contribute to our area and only by interacting with a wide range of would-be employers and education establishments can they understand just what a brilliant opportunities are here.
“A careers event was sorely missed last year, but it’s fantastic to see that it hasn’t lost momentum and schools, businesses and pupils are all keen to still get involved to make it a winner.”
To watch the Tees Valley Careers Expo again, visit teesvalleycareers-expo.co.uk