New collaboration is set to Inspire Skills Excellence in Wales
We are delighted to have commenced a new collaboration with Inspiring Skills Excellence in Wales (ISEiW) – a Welsh Government funded initiative led by Coleg Sir Gar.
ISEiW delivers a programme of activities that raise awareness of vocational education and training, as well as career pathways that will positively impact businesses in Wales.
The project does this by supporting vocational learning through Skills Competitions and its Have a Go initiative, to encourage young people to excel in the world of work.
The aim of the initiative is to provide young people in Wales with improved employability skills and life changing opportunities; with employers ultimately benefiting through the employment of highly skilled individuals bringing proficiency and added value to their businesses, as well as contributing to the overall prosperity of Wales.
ISEiW was set-up to encourage a culture across colleges and training providers to deliver not just qualifications, but also world class skills, with experiences that build confidence and transferable life-skills for the individuals who participate.
The ISEiW Have a Go initiative – on which we have recently become collaborators – uses fun and interactive experiences to encourage school children and college students to learn more about vocational careers and apprenticeships through interactive, practical learning challenges.
On our first engagement with the project, our Placement Coordinator, Shaun Williams, visited Ysgol Dyffryn Aman (Amman Valley Comprehensive) to speak to a class of 23 Year 8 pupils about green energy and some of the low carbon initiatives and technologies now being used in the construction industry.
The children were given a short talk by Shaun, which included how photovoltaic cells capture solar energy and convert it to electricity. During the talk, Shaun also gave details of how such panels were utilised during Cyfle’s involvement with the project to build the Kachumbala Maternity Unit in Uganda, and the availability of apprenticeships to enter the construction industry.
The class was then given the challenge of building a solar powered car, using a Have a Go kit provided by ISEiW – with all pupils completing the challenge successfully during the allotted one-hour lesson.
The school visit was overseen by Michelle Snell, the project’s Have a Go Champion, who is primarily responsible for delivering the range of Have a Go challenges to schools across the region. Also in attendance was Ysgol Dyffryn Aman’s Head of Maths, Francis Mazzeo, who was available to help the children complete their challenge.
Shaun Williams, our Placement Coordinator, said:
“The Have a Go initiative is a great way for young people to get to grips with some of the skills and technologies that are required to fill the skills gap within industry. The challenges are designed in such a way as to allow the pupils to understand how different technologies and methodologies work, while also building teamworking, communication and other important life-skills. It is a very rewarding and fun way to inspire the next generation of industry professionals, and we are delighted to be collaborating with Inspiring Skills Excellence in Wales on this initiative.”
Michelle Snell, Have a Go Champion, ISEiW, said:
“We are able to deliver the Have a Go challenges completely free of charge to the schools and colleges we work with, with a budget of up to £1500 per session, due to the way we are funded. We are also lucky to have a number of businesses that provide their time and expertise to enhance the sessions we deliver, and it’s great to have Cyfle Building Skills on board as a new industry partner.
“All of the sessions take place during normal lesson time, and we are currently able to deliver 30 sessions a year, working with 10 schools across the region. The Have a Go sessions are a fantastic way to promote some of the vocational pathways that students may not have considered, or even know very much about, whilst simultaneously encouraging the development of vitally important transferable life-skills.”