The Future is Female: Exploring Pathways for Bristol’s Young Women
Bristol WORKS has successfully led a series of group mentoring sessions for young people in Bristol, aimed at providing insights into various careers and inspiring young girls to pursue a wide of pathways. Over the course of 5 weeks, inspiring women from various sectors including construction, media, advertising, healthcare, business, and beauty were invited to St Bernadette’s Secondary School lunch club to share their career path stories with Year 9 girls.
The mentors shared their own experiences, providing valuable information about different career paths available to the students. Helen Green from Clear Channel discussed overcoming the worries associated with finding a first job and provided insightful advice on how to find a company culture that’s the right fit during the interview process. She also gave the girls an overview of the interesting work that Clear Channel does in advertising on billboards and bus stops in the local area and collaborating with artists.
Zoe Barber from PHC Parts shared her inspiring story about changing her career from beauty to a male-dominated field breaking stereotypes about gender roles. She encouraged the girls to follow their own paths and find a job that suits them regardless of any prejudices they may face.
Latoya, the founder of Kitchen Cosmetics, shared her journey of creating her own brand of health and beauty products. She highlighted the importance of determination and resilience in overcoming challenges.
The students also had the opportunity to meet female employees from the NHS, FD Works, and Willmott Dixon. The women shared their unique career paths and provided insights into different fields. Willmott Dixon talked about the joy of designing and seeing designs come to fruition in the world of architecture, while the NHS shared their rewarding experiences in entry-level roles, clinical, and technical jobs. FD Works introduced the finance industry, including marketing, and the variety of roles available in the field.
The sessions helped the young girls explore future pathways and opportunities available to them. It was fantastic to see their confidence grow as they felt comfortable to ask lots of questions about different roles in various sectors. They learned valuable lessons such as “not to be scared to start something on your own” and that having their own business can be a good alternative if their initial plan does not work out. Some students even said that the program has made them think about what they should do for work experience next year.
Overall, it was an enriching experience that will hopefully inspire these young girls to pursue their passions and carve their own paths in the future.