"High Standards and High Expectations by all and for all"

SKILLSFEST

SKILLSFEST 2015 took place Saturday 7th March and provided young people with the chance to take part in a range of activities and discover what skills businesses are looking for.
A host of companies, training organisations and schools ran interactive activities to promote key employability skills.

Skillsfest, organised by Inspira, Furness Education and Skills Partnership, was staged at The Forum in Barrow from 11am to 2.30pm.

Companies including GSK, BAE Systems, Siemens and Furness College, were among those highlighting key employability skills, such as problem solving, active listening and interview skills through a wide range of practical activities.

Pupils from Victoria Juniors worked alongside Furness College students to showcase the skills they have learnt and developed through collaborative FESP projects and George Romney Junior School, Dalton, showcased their Greenpower kit car.

Walney School Year 11 pupils and the school’s head of technology, Andy Green, demonstrated their technology skills, such as constructing electronic circuits.

Mr Green said: "SkillsFest is a great event to promote employability skills, we were really pleased to take part.  Technology is a leading subject at Walney, technology GCSEs are compulsory here and we offer five areas. There is a big emphasis on technology because of the area where we live.  We give the students something beyond GCSE technology. Our students work on an engineering portfolio in addition to their GCSE to give them some pre-apprentice skills to bring forward some of those skills.  Our high attaining electronics students, who are looking at apprenticeships and A-Levels, will be their working as a team.”

Walney pupil Gracie Croft, 16, wants to become an engineering apprentice. She is at the interview stage with Siemens.  
Gracie said: "SkillsFest will be very good having so many companies there. I will take the opportunity to speak to the employers.  It is good for students to attend this event, it shows you are committed. I’ve always wanted to do engineering, my granddad has been an engineer and we have good opportunities at school.”

Ben Eddy, 16, also a Walney pupil, is considering A-Levels or an apprenticeship to get into engineering and to study to degree level.
He said: "In this area there are so many opportunities in engineering. SkillsFest is a good event it is a chance for us to get put names out there and show how interested we are in engineering and to represent our school.  Our school is a great place for engineering. I think we will take a lot from running a stand and having the chance to speak to employers.”