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Shortlist in UK Career Development Awards for two CDCS students

The UK Career Development Awards 2019 takes place on March 6 and two Centre for Lifelong Learning students have received nominations. The awards showcase and celebrate the very best UK-wide practice in career development, with three major categories and ten individual awards. This year we are celebrating two of our students being shortlisted in the awards, both for Research Undertaken by a Careers Professional in the Best Practice Technology and Research Awards. Emily Roisin Reid, Career Development and Coaching masters student, works within the Student Careers and Skills department at the university. She was nominated for her research “Length Matters: The impact of shortening guidance appointments on practice.”

Erica, who graduated in the recent Winter 2019 ceremony at the university, studied Career Development and Coaching at a masters level. Her action research project, “Developing practice to enhance pupils learning of the apprenticeship pathway” focused on her work with The Yorkshire and Humber Co-Operative Learning Trust has also been shortlisted alongside Emily.

We caught up with Erica before the awards to hear about her search project and her preparations for the event.

So you've been shortlisted, how do you feel?
"Amazing! I only finished my research in October this year, so it was difficult to demonstrate how it had made an impact, it is very much a work in progress in terms of disseminating the findings. Being shortlisted provides a platform to raise awareness of the benefits of conducting action-based research and working in collaboration, in addition to highlighting the challenges schools face in promoting the apprenticeship pathway to pupils."

Any plans for the CDI Awards?
"I am travelling to the awards with my Husband Chris, and plan to meet up with Emily. We have both started to practice our magnanimous in defeat faces, whatever the result, it is great news for Warwick and testament to the quality of teaching and support that we received."

Explain how studying the MA in Career Development and Coaching Studies help you in the Career Development sector?
"The experience helped in many ways. I have been a careers professional for quite a few years and there is always the danger of becoming complacent, it was good to go back to basics and reconsider my use of theory in practice. I also developed more advanced coaching skills, in addition to benefitting greatly from connecting with others in the sector, enabling me to develop new perspectives. Ultimately the best part of the course for me was being encouraged to take the time to reflect, analyse, evaluate and improve!"

How are you putting your Masters into practice?
"I am the Careers Leader for the Yorkshire & Humber Co-operative Learning Trust in Hull, East Yorkshire. I work with young people aged 11-16 from a wide range of backgrounds and use the skills I learnt on a daily basis, particularly the Career Related Learning module. I am currently developing our careers programme to work more collaboratively with employers and embed careers across the curriculum."

Share an overview of your research project; “Developing practice to enhance pupils learning of the apprenticeship pathway” which you received the shortlisting for:

"I conducted an action research based project to address the pressure faced in schools to create new and innovative ways to promote the apprenticeship pathway. My study charted the evolving process of designing, delivering and evaluating five lessons and an employer visit, to a class of 22 Year 10 pupils, with the aim of identifying and addressing gaps in the pupil’s knowledge of apprenticeships, tackling misconceptions, alleviating young people’s concerns relating to the world of work, and enabling pupils to develop skills to help them research and plan for the transition from school to education, employment or training. The project was developed in collaboration with pupils, employers, training providers, CEIAG professionals, the Careers and Enterprise Company, and the recommendations are based on rigorous review and analysis thus providing a model of best practice to be disseminated across the wider CEIAG community."