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New Enterprise Adviser Ian Goodall is keen to get creative about helping the school he has been matched with to engage with more business and employers.

Ian, who runs creative and digital recruitment agency Aardvark Swift, has joined the Enterprise Adviser Network and been matched with St Bernard’s Catholic High School.

Ian met with Kevin Wright, the school’s careers, enterprise and PSHE lead, and is looking forward to working together to create more links between the school and the world of work and business.

Ian said: “As well as the links I have personally with creative and digital businesses, and the connections being made across Sheffield’s growth sector areas through this new network of Enterprise Advisers, I’m keen to work with the school to be more creative with the resources it already has at its finger tips. For example, parents and alumni will work across a range of sectors and have brilliant and interesting experiences they can share – sometimes it is just about asking!”

Kevin said: “We know it’s important for our students to meet more people from the world of work and business who can help them make informed choices about their next step in education, and to be excited about the range of opportunities in the world of work. We look forward to working with Ian to build more links.”


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Amy Stephenson, the founder and director of Human Recruit in Rotherham, has met colleagues from her partner school, Wickersley School and Sports College.

Amy was the first local business person to complete the application process to become an Enterprise Adviser when the Enterprise Adviser Network programme started in earnest earlier this year. She said: “For me, the Enterprise Adviser programme it is about giving back. My parents had businesses so I was introduced to the world of work at a young age, and I’ve worked with many business across the region throughout my career. I am really passionate about enterprise and employability skills and what they can do for young people and their futures. I had it instilled in me that anything is possible with hard work and a bit of determination. I want young people to feel as empowered as I did when I first left education.”

Amy met with Rachel Mullins, Head of Careers at Wickersley, and Jess Stevenson, Assistant Head. Rachel said: “We were looking for an Enterprise Adviser who had broad knowledge about what’s out there and what employers are looking for, and Amy’s background is ideal for that. We’re excited about how the programme will add value to our work.”

Assistant Head, Jess Stevenson, said: “Our students are keen to hear directly from business people and employers about the world of work. It helps inspire them, and informs their thinking. This process will help us create more opportunities for young people to have those encounters.”


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Andy Howells, Supply Chain Manager at Wilmott Dixon, a construction and regeneration company, has been matched with Abbey Special School. Andy wanted a challenge and with the difficultly Special Schools can have with finding sustainable work placements, Abbey Special School seemed the perfect option. Andy will now form part of Rotherham’s SEN Dream Team, a group of Enterprise Advisers working with special schools who want to create more work and volunteering experiences for students with special needs.

He said: “As an employer, Wilmott Dixon cares most about what kind of a person you are, not necessarily what letters you have after your name. With the right attitude, people can learn the knowledge or technical aspects of a job. But having the right attitude, wanting to do well, caring about your work and being committed, that’s what really makes a person. I’m excited to be working with Abbey Special School on the Enterprise Advisers programme and I’m keen to work with the other Special School Enterprise Advisers to improve opportunities for SEN students.”


Rotherham’s education and business community have responded with enthusiasm to the new Sheffield City Region Enterprise Adviser Network programme. Fourteen schools/colleges have now been matched through the programme, with more schools expressing an interest to join.

Jackie Frost, Enterprise Project Manager for Rotherham Borough Council, is helping to coordinate the programme in the town in partnership with Catherine Brentnall, Enterprise Coordinator for Rotherham. Jackie said: ‘The response has been brilliant. Schools have been keen to come on board, they really see how having an Enterprise Adviser from the world of work and business can help them make more links which will benefit students. And business people and employers have welcomed a way to get more involved in education too. They appreciate this is a way of building on good practice in schools and helping young people learn about the wide range of opportunities and careers available across Rotherham and the wider Sheffield City Region.’

Rotherham’s matches so far are:

  • Abbey Special School and Wilmott Dixon
  • Aston Academy and Blatchford
  • Hilltop Special School and Mike Smith, Lieutenancy Officer for South Yorkshire
  • Newman Special School and Patchwork Pig
  • Oakwood School and The Rotherham NHS Foundation Trust
  • Rawmarsh School and the University of Sheffield
  • Rotherham College and Airmaster Air Conditioning
  • St Bernard’s Catholic High School and Aardvark Swift
  • St Pius School and Mears Group
  • The Willows Special School and Sheila Quairney, Independent Social Enterprise and Education Consultant
  • Thomas Rotherham College and ALcontrol Laboratories
  • Wath Comprehensive and Capita
  • Wickersley School and Sports College and Human Recruitment
  • Winterhill School and MetaFortyTwo

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Marie Watson, Branch Manager at Blue Arrow, a recruitment agency that supplies bespoke staffing solutions to clients across the UK, has been matched with Ecclesfield School in Sheffield. Marie recently met with Sean Hollingsworth, Business and Community Engagement Manager at Ecclesfield School, and Caroline Fancett, Assistant Head, to confirm the match.  During her visit to the she was given a tour by two Y8 pupils.

As an Enterprise Adviser, Marie is planning to focus on helping the school to secure quality work experience placements and improve careers advice for students.  Marie will also advise on running interview and CV advice sessions, as well as helping to develop an academic mentoring programme. In addition, Marie wants to emphasise the importance of apprenticeships in today’s workforce, hoping that Blue Arrow will be able to take on a Business and Admin Apprentice from the school in the future.

Commenting on her recent appointment as Enterprise Adviser, Marie said; "I am thrilled to be working as an Enterprise Advisor for Ecclesfield School.  Blue Arrow’s whole ethos throughout our business is to ‘enhance lives’ and to engage with every candidate and client we work with.  What could be better than to work with students to help them develop their careers and to be a part of supporting them through what can be a difficult decision making time.  

“To work with young people who are just starting out on their work journey is exciting, and hopefully we can use our experience and connections to encourage the relationships between commercial enterprise and education so that we engage the next generation of superstars!!”

On Thursday 21st April the Rotherham division of the Sheffield City Region Enterprise Adviser Network held the first business networking event for their Enterprise Advisers. Fourteen Enterprise Advisers have been matched with local schools and colleges across Rotherham, and eight were able to join the first networking meeting. The meeting focussed on sharing experience and progress of the Enterprise Advisers’ newly formed relationships with their schools and colleges. It also offered the opportunity to learn from one another.

Jackie Frost, Enterprise Project Manager at Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council, which is helping to coordinate the programme, said: ‘Rotherham’s Enterprise Advisers are at different stages, some have just been matched, some have met their school or college, and some are at the review and action planning stage. For those at the early stages of their journey, it is a chance to hear from those further along the process to learn about the reality of the role and how to help schools and colleges with the careers and enterprise agenda.’

As part of the networking meeting, Enterprise Advisers heard from Mike Smith, Lieutenancy Officer for South Yorkshire, and Diane Keay, Customer and Community Manager at Mears, about their experiences working on the review process and action planning with their partner schools.  Mike Smith and Diane Key were among the first Enterprise Advisers to join the Sheffield City Region programme.

Anne Peat, Professor Emeritus at The University of Sheffield, who is the Enterprise Adviser for Rawmarsh Community School, said: ‘It’s been really valuable to hear from Enterprise Advisers who are at the ‘doing’ stage and picking up insights and practical tips that will help us in our new roles.’

Networking events will continue to form an integral part of the Sheffield City Region Enterprise Adviser Programme.  These will be offered at a national, regional and local level to those involved. 


Careers Enterprise Co 150

Visit The Careers & Enterprise Company website for information about the national programme

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