Interactive skills event inspires people in Furness.

SkillsFest 2014

SkillsFest 2014 attracted around 600 visitors on Saturday at The Forum in Barrow.

The event organised by Inspira and Furness Education and Skills Partnership, featured more than 20 stands.

The BAE Systems Maritime – Submarines stand had a range of activities on offer, from tests with submarine models and paper aircraft, to promoting good interview skills with tips and a mock interview hub.

Alan Dunn, operations director, and Graham Hempsall, lead of operations, at BAE went through practice interviews with adults looking to re-skill through to teenagers who are planning their careers.

Mr Dunn said: “The most important part of this process is about giving young and older people some experience and understanding of what an interview is, what skills are important to the employer and therefore what skills and tips and attributes potential employees can pick up.

“We want to increase their confidence and see it is not necessarily something they should be overwhelmed and daunted by. If you are less overwhelmed you tend to be yourself.”

Ben O’Flynn, 15, of St Bernard’s School, who had a mock interview said: “I came to SkillsFest to find out about apprenticeships in engineering and science. The mock interview was a really good opportunity. It will be really helpful for me. ”

Pharmaceutical company GSK promoted time management through a fun task for families where children could coat Smarties with ketchup, toothpaste and honey and them pop them in lemonade to see how long the coatings protected the sweet. Apprentices were involved in running the challenge and they shared their experiences and knowledge.

NHS Health cadets from Furness College promoted teamwork. The trainees, who spent part of the course of the wards of Furness General Hospital, carried out health tests on visitors.

Cadet Nakia Merchant, 17, of Barrow, said: “Teamwork is essential on this course and also in health careers you have to work well as a team to make sure patients get the best care.”

Brian Wood, a co-chairman of FESP said: “We are absolutely delighted that the message has got out to as many people, from reception in infant school right through to sixth form students and adults. Young people are here with their parents, taking part in activities, gaining information about employability skills and future job opportunities with some key companies here in Furness.”

Article Source: North West Evening Mail

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