– Education –

Next Steps South West

Workshop: Future Me!

About Them

Next Steps South West (NSSW) is a collaboration of fourteen partner universities and colleges throughout Cornwall, Devon and Somerset. We are funded by the Office for Students (OfS). As part of the Office for Students’ Uni Connect Programme, we help young people navigate their own personal journey to higher education. Across the region, we deliver events and activities designed to educate and inspire young people aged 13-19 years old, and those that influence them, such as parents and carers. We are one of their core projects.

What We Did

Future Me’s five-day programme helps students explore their future potential, finding possible routes into higher education and industry. Through self-led research, group demonstrations and presentations with visual aids, participants become more confident articulating their life achievements and ambitions. The week ends on a celebratory note with students formally presenting their work to a panel, receiving an NSSW certificate to acknowledge their dedication and progress.

The Results

• 84% increase in those who rated themselves as feeling confident.
• 76% increase in those feeling more confident making decisions about their future career plans.
• 81% increase in those who rated feeling that they know how to find out about course and study options for their future.
• 81% rated an increase in feeling confident in presenting their work to an audience.
• 76% rated an increase in feeling they know about university and higher education courses linked to their career plans.
• 74% rated an increase in feeling they were considering university as an option for their future.

What They Said

Students:

“At the beginning of the week, I was quite nervous when we were told that we had to present a PowerPoint to people. I think that everyone could see how nervous we were so we played a few games which calmed us down. When it came to creating our CVs and PowerPoints, when we didn’t understand something the tutor could come and talk us through it which helped a lot. Coming to the end, we would practise and learn how to stay calm and I felt a lot more confident when I finished.”

“It was helpful getting over the fear of public speaking.”

“This was an amazing opportunity and I have learnt so much about presenting and how to make a CV.”

“A fun experience, helped me understand what I want to focus on in the future.”

“I thought this week was a brilliant way of overcoming fears and coming out of your comfort zone. I now know more about the career I want to have later in life.”

“I thought that the articulacy workshop was amazing. I liked playing the games and the articulacy tutors were friendly. I have also achieved a skill for life.”

“At the start of the week I didn’t believe I would be able to present to my peers, and people I didn’t know. This week, I opened up and so did my confidence.”

“It’s been a fun week learning about jobs, careers and courses at university. I am very proud of myself for what I’ve done this week.”

Staff:

“I just wanted to let you know that I celebrated their articulacy achievements with the students this morning – so thank you for running the session. The students were still talking about it and loved the week.
Feedback from one of the more reluctant students this morning was: “Miss, when you said we had to do a public speaking workshop for a week, I hated you for volunteering me. But, by the end of the first week I realised I was actually going to have a really fun week. At the end, I felt so much more confidence within myself.””

Head of year 9 and English teacher

Panel Member:

“From the view of a Panel Member the presentations were HIGHLY POLISHED and AMAZING. The professionalism was beyond all my expectations for Year 9s. The students were really well-prepared and had a very mature approach. The detail of their research was outstanding and they had a real passion for their chosen career. I do not think I have met Year 9s with such good knowledge of their careers and the educational path to get there.”

Panel member who watched the final day presentations

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