Students from three Dublin schools have graduated from the Career Ready programme supported by Citi. To mark the completion of their two year employability programme the students were joined by the business volunteers who had worked as their mentors, representatives of supporting organisations and special guests Dublin GAA star Dean Rock and Lord Mayor Nial Ring at a special event kindly hosted by Central Bank of Ireland, Dublin 1.
Career Ready develops students’ potential by enabling their involvement in a range of activities including being paired with a business mentor for 18 months, visiting workplaces, attending masterclasses and completing work placements. The overall aims of Career Ready are to help students to recognise their potential, to develop and increase their employability skills, support their academic work and introduce them to the world of work. The 2016-2018 cohort comprises thirty students from St. Paul’s CBS, North Brunswick St; Loreto College, Crumlin and Our Lady of Mercy, Beaumont.
Special guest Dean Rock congratulated the students on taking their first steps in the world of work and reinforced the importance of role models and pushing oneself to achieve your goals: “You have shown your commitment to your own future success by completing the Career Ready programme. Take the skills and confidence you have gained from this experience and build on them, allow the programme to inspire you to fulfil your potential. With the right attitude you can do anything you set your mind to.”
Research has borne out that there is a great value in involving volunteers from the world of work to help young people make connections between what they are studying in school and the ‘real world’. The importance of role models in helping us learn and develop is fundamental. When caring adults are involved in education, students do better in school and life, adults become empowered, and schools and communities grow stronger.
The Career Ready 2016-18 mentors, as well as masterclasses and school to work visits, were provided by A& L Goodbody, Accenture, Amundi, BNY Mellon, Citi, Core, Dell, Deloitte, Diageo, LinkedIn, JLL, Pfizer, Standard Life and TV3.
Pat McCormack, Principal of St. Paul’s CBS, North Brunswick St, said that: “St Paul’s CBS has been involved with the Career Ready programme since its introduction and it has proved to be a fantastic partnership. Career Ready presents rich opportunities for students to explore interests and broaden horizons as they meet professionals from a wide range of businesses and industries. For teachers it provides opportunities to work in tandem with those professionals in supporting and developing the student experience. For those professionals and businesses it offers a great chance to enrich their work, to reach into their communities and to benefit from the enthusiasm and talents that our students bring to the programme. Long may Career Ready prosper!”
Cecilia Ronan, Citi Ireland CCO, referred to the benefits from her perspective when reflecting that: “For my colleagues & I, Career Ready offers a structured, well-designed and meaningful programme to support students from local communities. When they join us on internships and participate in masterclasses, they remind all of us of the diverse range of talents that go into making up a successful team. It is always a joy to share their youthful enthusiasm!”
On behalf of JAI, CEO Helen Raftery said: “Research shows that working with ‘real-world’ volunteers helps young people to see the relevance of their academic studies to their everyday lives, which is a vital factor in persuading them to stay in school, take full advantage of their education and maximise their potential. The Career Ready students have developed over the past 18 months into enterprising individuals who have the skills, knowledge and attitudes needed to achieve the goals they set for themselves. Thank you to Citi and all our corporate partners for their support of the Career Ready initiative and the Central Bank of Ireland for hosting this celebratory event.”