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Business leaders from across County Durham are being invited to inspire the next generation about the world of work by joining the North East Local Enterprise Partnership’s Enterprise Adviser Network.

With more than 160 local businesses currently represented, the Enterprise Adviser Network sees businesses work in partnership with a local school or college to help shape careers education and ensure young people enter the workplace with the skills, attitudes and behaviours employers need.

Enterprise Advisers work alongside the senior leadership team at a local school or college and use their specialist industry knowledge to help bridge the gap between business and education; embedding careers education in the curriculum.

Michelle Rainbow, Skills Director at the North East Local Enterprise Partnership, said: “It’s now more important than ever that we prepare young people for the future world of work and equip them with the skills needed to succeed. That’s why we want to expand, diversify and strengthen our Enterprise Adviser Network across County Durham.

“We welcome representation from a diverse range of employers, and from businesses of all sizes and across all sectors that want to engage with and support a local school or college. So whether you’re a sole trader or a multinational company, we can support you to engage with education in a way that suits you and your organisation.”

Helen Johnson from County Durham local housing provider, Livin, has been an Enterprise Adviser with Whitworth Park Academy in Spennymoor since September 2019.

Helen said: “Working in partnership with Whitworth Park Academy has enabled me to support students to be more confident, embrace learning and successfully progress onto further education, an apprenticeship or into employment.

“As well as ensuring the future workforce has the skills needed by employers, being an Enterprise Adviser is a rewarding opportunity to see students progress onto a positive outcome. I have great pride in knowing the work I am involved in achieves this.

“Businesses can make a real difference to students, empowering them to take control of their lives, reach their full potential, and shape their own futures.”

Enterprise Advisers attended three termly meetings over the course of an academic year with their partnered school or college. They also have the opportunity to take part in training sessions delivered by the North East LEP.

Michelle Rainbow continued: “Businesses in our region genuinely want to support their local communities and help young people build a brighter future.

“We’d like more businesses to join us so we can continue to inspire the next generation about the fantastic career opportunities here in the North East.”

Currently more than 250 businesses in the North East LEP area are actively working with local schools and colleges as part of the North East LEP’s North East Ambition programme.

To find out more about the North East LEP’s Enterprise Adviser Network and sign up to take part, visit www.northeastambition.co.uk/business, email GoodCareers@nelep.co.uk, or call 0191 561 5420.

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