From education to employment

Essex MP marks UK Employability Day at skills showcase

Chelmsford MP Vicky Ford (third left) and Seetec Skills Co-ordinator Chris Levitt (second right) with the trainees at the Skills Showcase

Chelmsford MP Vicky Ford met hospitality trainees taking the first steps on their career journey during a Skills Showcase at Essex Cricket to mark National Employability Day.

Organised by employment and skills specialist Seetec, the event gave local employers the opportunity to discuss the benefits of developing young talent through traineeships, apprenticeships and employment.

Several companies and organisations showed interest in the trainee programme at the County Ground, where Seetec recruits young people to support the hospitality team.

Five trainees, who are completing their qualifications in hospitality and food safety, demonstrated the skills they had learned by serving lunch.

They were supported by former trainees who had progressed to hospitality apprenticeships at Essex Cricket. The youngsters were congratulated by Essex cricket legend Graham Gooch, who undertook an engineering apprenticeship before signing his professional cricket contract and spoke of the importance of developing young talent.

Mr Gooch said: “Our County Championship winning team of last season contained eight local players, which is unheard of in modern sport. We at Essex Cricket are very proud of that and it shows our commitment to developing local talent.”

Vicky Ford MP said: “I’m very impressed to hear about the work Seetec has done with young people who have found it very challenging to find work. The trainees have told me about their experience and I’d like to thank Seetec and Essex Cricket for giving them so much support.”

Trainee Becca Brown, 17, from Broomfield, who is the mother of an 18-month-old daughter, said: “It has really built up my confidence around people, and it’s been nice that I’ve been able to get out and learn new things, it has been different every day.”

Trainee Theo Ogiefa, 20, who lives in Colchester, said: “Seetec really helped me to get work. The skills I’ve gained are that that I’ve become far more confident and I understand how to communicate better.”

Chris Levitt, Skills Co-ordinator for Seetec, said: “Traineeships are a chance to really make an impact on the next generation and get their career off to a flying start.

“Our trainees have worked incredibly hard and it has given them a boost to see the success of our former trainees, who have supported and trained them during their placement, and the opportunities for employment progression that are available to them.

“We’ve had an encouraging response from employers who have seen how traineeships can be a breeding ground for developing young talent to meet their skills needs.”

Employers attending included Ipswich Town, Colchester United, Greene King and McDonald’s along with representatives from the Department for Work and Pensions.

The event on 29 June marked the third annual UK Employability Day coordinated by the Employment Related Services Association (ERSA). The day saw hundreds of employment support centres and employers across the country throwing open their doors to raise awareness about what they do to help people into work.

Seetec is one of the UK’s leading skills, employment and training providers and helps support people and businesses to grow their talent. 

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