Careers Programmes

Our Careers Programme takes students through four key stages: developing Self-Awareness, identifying Opportunities, making Decisions, and creating a Transition plan (DOTS principles) and we also refer to the Career Development Institute’s Careers Development Framework.  It aligns with the VESPA Mindset a teaching model that draws together current thinking from psychology, business and sport to inspire, motivate and support students to work towards their full potential. Progress Coaches, teachers, and the Careers and Employability team work closely together to ensure that we deliver a coherent careers programme across all college activities.   We work towards achieving the eight Gatsby Benchmarks.

The Unifrog careers platform underpins the programme and ensures that every student has a vast array of careers information available at their fingertips throughout their time at Long Road and beyond.  Progress Coaches, teachers, and careers staff guide students to, for example, shortlist university and apprenticeships destinations and to record Activities and Skills which are crucial to securing work.  We also signpost students to other sources of online information to complement Unifrog.

Level 2 and Level 3 students have careers embedded within their tutorial and teaching programmes and are guided by tutors and Progress Coaches, who also support students through the university application process, run the Aim Higher programme, and the Russell Group preparation programme.  The Biology Course Team Leader runs MedSquad for aspiring medical students. 

The careers programme has a clear focus on developing self-awareness, self-confidence, self-management, and important employability skills for the future.  We make students aware of different progression routes, with opportunities to meet a wide range of employers and apprenticeship providers, and we prepare them for future transitions, including progression into higher levels of study where appropriate.

We have strong relationships with several NHS trusts, research institutes, and companies on the Cambridge Biomedical Campus.  We run an annual NHS Careers Week with visits by NHS professionals to classrooms and a two-day careers fair where different NHS specialisms can meet students and explain the career opportunities they can offer.

This year we partnered with two companies to design employer-led challenges where students work in interdisciplinary teams over several weeks to solve problems or complete projects guided by professionals.  These will typically relate to real-world issues encountered in the workplace and are designed to foster teamwork, creativity, and problem-solving skills.  Each challenge has a sustainability dimension, and we are looking to gradually expand the range of challenges to all subjects.

We encourage all students to engage with careers activities within the college and to take advantage of external opportunities e.g., industry Insight days and work experience.  We have set aside a slot in their timetable entitled ‘Progression Planning’ to reflect upon and plan this element of their study programme.  This slot can be used to complete Unifrog tasks. 

All students can either directly book or be referred for a personal careers guidance session with a qualified careers adviser.  In 2023-24, SEND students received extra support in the form of dedicated one-to-one careers guidance from a Level 7 qualified careers adviser and bespoke workshops offered by Working Options in Education.

In 2024 we introduced Virtual Reality resources supported by the Local Skills Improvement Fund, focused on employability skills, and we are working with NHS partners to create 360-degree VR films of workplace environments including information about healthcare and life science roles.

Any employers, universities, FE colleges, apprenticeship providers, or voluntary organisations wishing to participate in our events and those wishing to offer work experience opportunities, class talks, challenges or just to provide feedback, should contact in the first instance.  We would love to hear from you. The programme summarised below is available to all students either generally or specifically.

Autumn Term 2023

  • Introduction to Careers and Progression – Year 12
  • Careers Update – Year 13
  • Ambition, Vision, Vespa – Year 12 Tutorials
  • Unifrog: Quizzes, Activities, and Skills – Year 12 Tutorials
  • Labour Market Information – Year 13 Tutorial
  • ADVance: Options, Pathways, Decision-making – Year 13 Workshop
  • Alumni talk on apprenticeships – Economics
  • TTP and Sanofi Cambridge LaunchPad Project Days
  • General Careers Fairs (two days)
  • Sookio Marketing Challenge
  • Ramboll Engineering Challenge
  • Morgan Sindall Tetrahedron Exercise
  • University of Law Criminal Investigation Day – Criminology
  • Policing in the Community and Police Careers talk
  • Astra Zeneca Discovery Centre visit – Career Ready Applied Science
  • Green Skills and Careers event
  • National Citizens Service Residential Week
  • Equality, Diversity, Inclusion Careers Talk – Sociology
  • Primary Teaching ARU talk
  • Degree Apprenticeships Workshop 1
  • STEM Careers Carousel

Spring Term 2024

  • Higher Education, Apprenticeships, Work Experience – Year 12 Tutorials
  • Unifrog individual research – Year 12 Tutorial
  • Degree Apprenticeships Workshops 2 and 3
  • Animal Ethics and Cancer Research UK talk
  • Planet Tracker talk – Finance and Sustainability – Economics
  • Aviva Investments Project Day
  • Hays Recruitment – CV and applications clinic, Personal Branding Workshop
  • Careers in Languages talk – French and Spanish
  • Working Options in Education workshops – SEND
  • Apprenticeships Parents and Students Information Evening
  • Rathbones Investment Management Talk – Business and Economics
  • CRUK-CI visit – Biology
  • Liaison and Diversionary Service talk – Criminology
  • NHS Careers Week
  • Mock Interviews
  • VR Employability Skills (Bodyswaps) sessions

Summer Term 2024

  • CVs, job applications, personal statements, UCAS – Year 12 Tutorials
  • Crime Scene Investigation with ARU – Criminology
  • Cambridge Econometrics talk – Economics
  • Visit to University of Lincoln – Psychology, Criminology
  • Visit to Warwick University
  • VR Employability Skills (Bodyswaps) sessions
  • Departmental careers events – ‘Progression Week’
  • Work Experience - optional