Tag Archives: Opportunities

My Journey so far…

Georgia Corps
As a year 13 student I have made the mistake of joining the CEIL in this academic year. The whole of last year wasted and at what cost? I am now only starting to develop skills that I can put to full use in particular situations I will be faced with. I’ve been given an Intern Project that I can work on in my CM hours in the chosen hour a week. Leading up to my first 1:1 with Marcel I was just given task to make a start on a CV, I learnt also the importance of when leaving university you need to be able to stand out from the rest, show an employer why you are better from all other applicants.

I have been in the CEIL now for just over half a year and already I am confident with the types of proficiencies I am required to have and my strong and weak points picked up by marcel in the first 1:1 session I had with him on my sixth week of joining. He had told me I needed to become more focused and maintain attention on a given object independent on the surroundings. I was put on the Kiosk Team to achieve and complete a set of task in a busy and unorganized environment which required me to go to CEIL Tuesdays after school. I find this project very good for me as I have been put in control of stock check and organizing the kiosk, this has enabled me to improve my skills with management and organization, commitment is a large aspect throughout as I am putting my time aside into the Kiosk one lunchtime a week to make sure it is open and every Tuesday after school for an hour. Other than my Kiosk project I have now been put onto the CEIL’s tours team, I’ve only been a member for a couple of weeks now but I was partnered up and my task was to help create a script for a tour, the aim from this project is to allow me to be more confident in myself and when speaking to others in a professional manner.

Overall the CEIL has helped me work on and try to improve my personal skills, so when I am required to stage myself during an interview, for an example; I can show my dexterity and passion. It has helped me build my CV to a standard far better than before I had joined the beginning of this year.
Georgie Corps

How the CEIL has helped me

Georgie THOMAS
In September 2014 I joined the CEIL as an Associate Intern as part of my Enrichment. I heard about the CEIL when coming to Budmouth for the day before I officially joined the sixth form. At first I thought it was to mainly help build on your CV, but it was when I joined the programme in September that I found out it was much more than that. In the first 6 weeks, I realised that the CEIL tailors to the individual and each programme is unique to the individual. I was a shy, unconfident person who was only comfortable talking to people I am close to and who I know wouldn’t judge me wrong. Though I am still getting over confidence barriers, I can definitely see a change in me as a person. After the initial 6 week starter programme, I had my first 1:1 with Marcel and it hit home how nervous about these sorts of situations I got, and he could see that too. So he assigned me to the Tours team to help build on my confidence. Initially I thought that was a bad idea and though I haven’t given a solo tour myself yet, I am planning to by the end of March/early April which is something I never thought I would do. I have observed a tour given by a fellow Year 13 only last week and the guest wanted to sit us down and question us both. The minute I heard this I felt my stomach drop and the nerves kick in. As I slowly started talking about my aspirations for the future, I could feel myself settle down, and gain confidence. I maintained eye contact and become confident in the words I spoke. It is only when you’re put into these situations that you will ever be able to overcome something, and though at first I wanted to run away from it, I didn’t because I’m not a quitter. So though the programme may not be for everybody, it has helped me develop as a person and I think for those who are really looking to improve on a certain aspect of themselves, the CEIL can really help you achieve that.
Georgie Thomas


Matt Baghurst
It is important that I have a career or have a plan for what I want to do when I finish my A – levels. I could have chosen to go to university, but this was expensive and uninterested me, so I decided that I wanted to go down the apprenticeship route. A company called BAE systems offered higher apprenticeships, and worked for the Ministry of Defence, designing and manufacturing marine and air vehicles, and would also allow the apprentice to study a degree whilst being paid for working for the company, so I would be gaining money instead of losing money if I was an apprentice.
I completed an application form that asked questions about why I would like to work for BAE Systems, and also asked me to show evidence for certain skills, such as co-operation and handling unforeseen problems. The CEIL allowed me to gain experiences which could be used as evidence for this. Also, the application included education history and asked if the applicant had any computer skills.
After sending the application in November, I had to wait a month until they replied, saying that I had made it to the next process, and that if I was shortlisted, I would be notified. At the end of February I was then sent an email inviting me to an assessment centre in Farnham, in Surrey, for an interview, a group exercise and to give a presentation on a specific task that they would send in a few days’ time. Of course, by this time I had started to worry that I wouldn’t hear anything from this company again, so I was extremely excited to be invited to prove myself to the assessors.
I was invited to meet them at a hotel on Sunday 8th March, which the company paid for, and met with the other candidates (8 of us in total) as well at the assessors and apprenticeship organisers in the evening before the next day, when the assessment would actually happen. As I got to know them, they seemed to be very nice and I started to relax around them, and started having casual conversations with everyone. A lot of questions were answered about the apprenticeship, although I couldn’t find out what I would actually be doing due to the secrecy around MOD contracted companies.
The next day, we travelled to the assessment centre and started the day by doing the group exercise. We were given a scenario and in a group of 4, rank a group of items by number from 1 to 15 on how useful they would be to somebodies survival in the specific scenario. I expected to something physical for this part so I was a bit surprised, but also relieved because I knew I could demonstrate co-operation and also show that I wasn’t afraid to say what Is on my mind, as well as making sure everyone’s ideas were heard. This took about 30 minutes.
Next, I had to give my presentation, and this happened exactly as I expected it to. I had to create a presentation that stated the main challenges with underwater navigation in submarines, and also had to be around 15 minutes long. Once I gave the presentation, they asked me questions about how I found the information, and also some technical questions too. Due to me meeting everyone the previous day, I wasn’t nervous, which I found very helpful.
Finally, I was interviewed. This consisted of 4 questions, and took around about 30 minutes too, which was very different to how I imagined the interview to be like. I had prepared for a formal, hour long interview with many different questions practiced, but it turned out that this was quite informal, even though everyone was wearing suits. I was asked one technical question, one question about co-operating and working in a team, one question about adapting to changes to overcome a problem, and, of course, why I wanted to work with BAE Systems .I found that this interview went well, mainly because of how enthusiastic I am about working a company which uses such fascinating technology.
At the end of the assessment, all candidates were told that we would find out if we were to be given conditional offers or turned down in less than a week.
Overall, this has been a very good experience because I now know what assessors look for in group exercises and interviews, and I have also become more confident with meeting new people and presenting myself in a specific way.
Matt has now heard back from BAE, and has this to add:
BAE recently contacted me, offering me a conditional offer for the Combat Systems Higher Apprenticeship in Weymouth. I was told that I performed very well at the assessment centre, and that I would be starting September 7th.
Now I feel like I have a massive weight lifted off of my shoulders, as I have been offered a good paying job after I finish sixth form this year, and I can study to get a degree without paying university fee’s. Most importantly however is that I will be gaining experience, which is what I have wanted since I joined the CEIL at the end of 2013.
I do not believe that I would have got this apprenticeship without the CEIL, as it has prepared me for this moment since I started my internship through different opportunities and projects. The internship has made me more confident, through working with new people and doing tours on open evenings, and also allowed me to work more successfully in a group, solving problems more efficiently. This is what the assessors wanted to see, and without these skills, someone else would have been chosen for the job. The CEA allowed me to improve me cooperation skills, as well as giving me experience in working to a deadline, which is another thing that this job will involve.
The main point I would make is that you should apply as soon as possible. Don’t worry about how long it takes for the company to reply, because they will, eventually, and also, try and present yourself as someone who is enthusiastic about a job, because that is the type of person that they want working for them.
Matt Baghurst

An exchange student in the CEIL

Jason Nikolaus
I came from Germany to the UK in the end of September, for an exchange year here in the Budmouth College. In total I’ll have been staying here for 10 months.
As I came here the first day, the other exchange students encouraged me to go up to the CEIL. By that time I didn’t really know what the CEIL was and I thought it was just an area were one could study. But the CEIL staff and also the students introduced me quite quickly and the idea of the CEIL became more and more appealing to me. Within the first 6 weeks of preparation I realized how well the CEIL actually was. By analysing my soft skills, I recognised that the CEIL is all about my future, which made me even more happy. I had many worries about how the life after school would look like and I also worried about being inexperienced in a professional environment. The CEIL offered all this to me, which made me more relaxed. The fact that I haven’t got such an opportunity in Germany, makes me even more proud of being a member of the CEIL now.
After the 6 weeks of preparation, I finally had my one to one with Marcel. This conversation impressed me very much, because Marcel could really tell me, in which areas I had to improve. He also had a really good project for me which would make me work on my fear of criticism and also would give me experience in the areas of profession I would like to go into. He decided to put me in the Marketing Team. By the time of my second one to one he even made me the “Operation Manager”. That meant that I had to be responsible for the time our group had to finish in. This responsibility helped me a lot as well, because there was more pressure on me, which I really needed to experience.
All in all I’m really happy that joined the CEIL. The experience I gained is just invaluable. I suggest every student and especially exchange student to join the CEIL. The things you learn here can definitely help you in your professional life!

What I Have Gained In CEIL

Hannah Roy
I became a CEIL intern in autumn 2013 when I was in year 12. One of the first opportunities that is available to new interns is to lead tours around the school site, including tours around the CEIL. This was the first opportunity that I took part in, and I have done 3 open evenings in my time in the CEIL. Doing these open evenings have helped me to improve my communication skills and helped me learn to think on my feet. You get asked a variety of questions from people who are pretty much strangers to you, yet you have to answer them with confidence and in a professional manner. Looking back on the open days afterwards, as an individual and with other tour leaders, is just as valuable as the experience itself because I was able to look at the weaknesses and think about how the tours could be improved. The next project I was involved in was the homework club. This was a club set up to help students struggling to hand their homework in. The students were often difficult and didn’t want to be there so it was often hard work and required a lot of perseverance. I was also involved in meetings with Ferndown school that were beginning to set up their own CEIL. In these meetings I had to talk about my personal experiences within the CEIL, specifically going into detail about 1:1s and how important they are in order for you to keep furthering your development. This was a valuable experience because it enabled me to look back over what I had done in the CEIL so I could look forward to what I wanted to do next. I would recommend this type of experience to other interns because it allows you to become part of the development of the CEIL. You also begin to form links with outside schools which may be beneficial to your own project later on.
My main project for my first year was to set up an Equine Focus Group. My target was to improve my self-belief and to start thinking more optimistically. Although I managed to get a few people interested in the group, I never managed to run an actual meeting. This was because there weren’t enough people interested in coming to the event. Looking back, I am able to see that I needed to be more forward in pressing people to come to the event instead of just waiting to see what happened after the initial invitation was sent. Even though the project wasn’t completed, I have learnt a lot from it. My communication skills have improved and I feel that I will be able to plan a project more effectively next time.
This year, I am a member of the Kiosk team as well as working on a research project and being a PIIP mentor. On the research team, we have to research all the schools in the country to see what work experience and careers resources they offer. On the kiosk team, I am part of the sixth form team that manage the operations of the shop. Being a PIIP mentor involves working with lower school students to help them overcome specific problems that hold them back. All these projects help me to develop a range of skills and also help me to see the bigger picture when working on small parts of the project, which was one of my main problems. I want to try and be part of as many opportunities within the CEIL to help towards my accreditation. Through my CEIL projects, I have gained the skills and experience I will need to stand out to future employers.

My CEIL Experience

Daniel Skelson
In the Enrichment Fair in Year 12, I was persuaded to do the CEIL as I thought I might gain something out of my enrichment time as it was only two hours a week. At this point I had no idea what I was going to gain, because the talk had stated that I would gain employability skills but didn’t mention what. So I joined with an open mind and hoped that it would be a good decision.
Originally I thought this isn’t too bad, all we had to do was little tasks here and there and write up certain things about ourselves. After a few weeks I was put with a project, which researched and then synopsized documents on employability in young people. This project had the aim of helping to open up other CEIL-like institutes around the country. The first meeting with the team went well, and over time I steadily realised that I just couldn’t do it, I was hopeless at synopsizing. The person who ran the project thought that I was just incapable of doing it correctly, and at this point I didn’t want to continue with this project.
Luckily a new project was started up and I was passed onto this project as the CEIL knew that the first project didn’t exactly go smoothly. This project looked at schools and how they helped students become more employable. This could be either work experience or talks on careers advice and similar based workshops. The person who was in leading the project I knew very well this made me instantly feel comfortable about joining this project. After some talks explaining the project I was shown the Excel Document that showed all of the data. I instantly started asking questions about how it could be improved and in the end she passed me the File and said ‘Improve it’. So I went away and improved the Document which is still used now.
The CEIL had an opportunity project which is the Young Researchers Project. They suggested that I join this as it would be good for me and help me improve on certain points which the other two projects hadn’t. I applied for it, had the interview and was placed as a member of the project. Young Researchers is a group that every year, look into certain aspects of life in young people, for example this year it is Retention of Year 12 Students and Emotional Well-Being. We are given certain points on what the Council would like us to research into and then we think up questions, send out surveys and then review the data collected. This project is really good as it means you meet loads of brand new people across Dorset and that you help expand Dorset’s Research Data meaning that we know what affects our Young People, so we can help support them.
I found that this project used skills from the other two projects meaning that even though they didn’t go as well, they still were helpful when applied to this project. It is almost like Building Blocks, once you have got that Block you never lose it and it lets you reach higher places as you can use what you learnt again and again for different tasks or jobs helping you in future employment and life. The CEIL has shown to me that not everything goes according to plan but if you work hard, seek out those opportunities and learn those skills you can really help yourself and just become an overall more skilled and better person.

My Scholarship Experience

Abigail Brewster
Before earning a scholarship, I had to be given a panel interview. This improved my confidence and my communication skills, as I had to prove to them that choosing me would be the best possible choice. I had to think on my feet when I was asked a difficult question, so I improved my ability to think on the spot.
When I got to Weatherbury Veterinary Practice, I got to see a completely different side of Veterinary treatments: homeopathy. This has made me interested in learning more at university. Working with a vet with an MBE for her homeopathy treatments and dedication inspired me to work hard whilst I was there and absorb as much information as I could. She treated her veterinary nurses’ pets professionally throughout, and had good relationships with all of her clients and their pets.
I also got to see a veterinary nurse’s job first-hand, by observing operations, cleaning the equipment after surgeries, and help with the recuperation of the patients, such as the Labrador who was accidently hit by her owners. Seeing her recover gave me such a rush knowing that I had helped her, giving me the epiphany that I wanted to be a veterinary nurse all along, instead of a vet. Since then, I have applied for four veterinary nursing university courses, and I look forward to training to become a veterinary nurse when I am accepted into one of these courses.
In the CEIL, I am in charge of the school shop, known as the Kiosk. My organisation skills helped me get tasks done quickly and efficiently, and my communication and listening skills came in handy when speaking to clients on the phone or in person, if the vet and the nurses were preoccupied, such as during operations. I also got to use my patience a lot whilst I was there; the most memorable example of this was when I chased a flock of sheep that had escaped from their field. I had to herd them back in whilst running through stinging nettles in quarter-length running trousers.
When I completed my scholarship placement, I was informed by the staff on my final day that, if I were to need any more work experience in the future, they would happily take me on again. This will be extremely helpful for me, as I loved working there, as it gave me a glimpse of my future in veterinary nursing, which I am extremely looking forward to. It also showed me how we all had formed such a close friendship, as I was extremely sad to leave and go back to sixth form. That close-knit, second-family feel the surgery had made me want to run a similar practice when I am working as a veterinary nurse, as I have always wanted to own my own practice.
By being in charge of the kiosk, many of the skills I need to use regularly link to my scholarship; I got to use my communication skills when talking to clients, I had to work as part of a team, I got to show my reliability by turning up at the same time every day, and I got to show my organisation skills when it came to cleaning up all the cages in the most efficient way. I also got to see what a real business is like, and what is needed to keep a business working harmoniously and profitably, which I will need to do when I own my very own practice.

My Time in CEIL

Matt Baghurst
When I first found out about the opportunities the CEIL provided, I realised that through enrichment I could do something that would really benefit me and prepare for life after leaving this school, which was soon approaching. In October 2013, I joined the CEIL and was told to settle in and look around, and I was amazed by the facilities, as I had only been up here once for a tour that was cut short due to a busy schedule. I was told I could study up here, and that I would be given the opportunity to become an intern if I wanted to do this for enrichment. At first I was a little hesitant as I had just started my courses and was having difficulty adjusting to them, but I decided I would, as I knew that this internship would develop me, not just as student, but as person, because I would be given a lot of independence and would also have to work on my weaker skills, especially my laid back attitude and confidence. This internship would mean becoming a better leader, and telling people to do things, which I usually didn’t like to do.
During the first few weeks of my internship I got used to the place and being here an hour a week, as well as studying hard on my new subjects. I was then told I was due a 1:1 with the Centres director, Marcel Ciantar. He had been studying my personality to find my strong and weak points, such as my lack of confidence when speaking to people I didn’t know and how, although I was enthusiastic about the CEIL, I didn’t look like it. Hence, Marcel put me in situations where I had to be confident and look happy and charming, such as working with a stranger to make presentations with future sixth formers, describing what the CEIL’s main aim was: To prepare students for leaving school so that they can be picked for the jobs they apply for by making them as professional as possible. We had to give 6 presentations and make a power point whilst using an interactive display and involving the groups we were talking to. At first I was nervous and dreading it, but towards the end I felt a lot more relaxed and comfortable with presenting in front of people I barely knew. This was an important moment for me, and made me realise that within a month of joining the CEIL I was becoming a different person, but most importantly I was becoming an opportunity seeker.
A few weeks later I participated in the sixth form open evening, as I knew this would increase my confidence even further, and also help me with speaking to older people and conversing without it being awkward. I was to be at the college at 6, then take tour groups up to the CEIL, not just to show them the area, but to show all the area’s leading up to it as well, like the resources area and study rooms. I answered any questions the students or parents wanted to ask, and was very polite, so I felt that my people skills improved a lot more because of this experience as I was dealing with different types of people.
After this I was offered a place in the Centre of Excellence Ambassadors, whose job it was to advertise the CEIL to non-interns, which would hopefully lead to more people realising the opportunities the Centre of Excellence provides, as well as giving me experience in event planning and hosting, as well as using media to interest people. I joined the already active group in a meeting, at was introduced to all the people in it and started thinking of possibilities. After planning it out, we decided to host a quiz in the costa café. We talked to the principal of sixth form and head of enrichment to find a date when we could do it, and talked to the operation managers about funding, and then we held the event, providing food and prizes from the funding we were provided. People turned up in groups and the event was a success.
After this exams started, and once they had finished, members left sixth form as they were about to start university, so I became a lead figure of the CEA, and still working with the members who were staying for another year, we began planning out the next year of school, and when would have meetings and some initial ideas of events.
Overall, the Centre of Excellence in Industrial Liaison has helped my CV grow as well as my personality, and has allowed me to mature and talk seriously to people who have never met before, preparing me for life after school, whilst making me more likely to get the job I aspire to have.

New Found Strength

Anisa Uddin
When I first started CEIL, I was shy, lacked confidence and so presented myself in a way that seemed unwilling, opted out of opportunities and was unable to talk to new people. That was a year ago, and now I can say that I’m not so shy. I am able to present myself in a professional ‘can-do’ attitude manner, say yes to opportunities and can talk to new people without stumbling over my words.

One suggestion that was made to me was to join the CEA – CEIL Ambassadors, who co-ordinate the CEIL events. I have to admit; the first meeting I attended I was a bit overwhelmed over the fact that everyone had something to say. And that they were focused. This was because any meeting I had been to before, it was unprepared and ‘made up as they went along’. This experience was different, it was professional. From being with the CEA I have discovered a new skill. As Marcel puts it, ‘acting as glue in a team’ – managing the process of putting ideas together and reaching a practical plan. This new found strength will really help me in my C.V, UCAS personal statement or during an interview. It’s something I can talk about that is related to my chosen career path as my unique selling point. And that is what the CEIL does for you, it helps you discover skills you’ve already got and ‘fine-tune’ it.

Thinking on my Feet

Abbie Jolliffe
When I first started the CEIL at the beginning of year 12, I was fairly shy and lacked confidence in the ability to talk to new people and trying to hold a conversation with them. In my first 1:1 with Marcel in November, he identified that this was one of my weaknesses and set my first task; talking to new people in the sixth form to try and encourage them to come up and try the CEIL. This task didn’t go as well as I would have hoped, as I only managed to convince one person to try the CEIL. However, another opportunity to help out on the sixth form open evening proved to be very helpful as I had to not only give a tour of the school to potential students and their parents, I also had to talk to parents and students about the A level P.E course. This opportunity encouraged me to get out of my comfort zone and was a perfect opportunity to practise thinking on my feet.
In my next 1:1 Marcel set a new task; to plan and develop a tour of the CEIL. This project was much more successful than my previous one. In this project, I had to give tours to other members of the CEIL, who also gave me ideas in how to further improve my tour. As a result, I was asked to help give a tour with fellow interns to the Pearson judges. This was a very good experience as I had to work with fellow interns to make sure we all had equal roles within the tour and no one particular person was leading the whole tour. I also got involved in holding conversations with the judges, which encouraged me to think on my feet.
As I work part time in a café the summer, I need to be fairly confident in speaking to customers, as some can be quite difficult and rude at times. I believe that the work I have done with the CEIL Team in my first year of being an intern has really helped me to grow in confidence and improved my ability to think on my feet, especially in difficult situations.