Y12 ‘Careers Fortnight’

Between 4-15th November, we held our Year 12 ‘Careers Fortnight’. The aim of this fortnight was to provide Year 12 students with resources and information to help them to make more informed decisions about what they might wish to do post 18, whether it is university, an apprenticeship scheme, a gap year or employment.

Activities included a trip to Sheffield University, where students attended a talk about how to choose a university, tour of the university campus and a sample lecture. Students had the opportunity to take part in a workshop with PwC delivered by one of our ex-students, Holly. It was lovely to see Holly again and hear how she had entered the PwC programme as a Maths undergraduate. We also welcomed a number of visitors into school, who kindly volunteered their time to offer practice 1:1 interviews for each student in Year 12. These interviews help prepare them for university, part time work and ultimately interviews into their career profession of the future. We had various careers speakers invited into assemblies to talk about apprenticeships, employability skills, interview skills and visualisation. Ex-students spoke about their particular pathways and students were able to attend careers talks in lessons and at lunchtimes.

Thank you to all of those who were involved in making this a worthwhile programme.

“We are currently preparing students for jobs that don’t yet exist . . . using technologies that haven’t been invented . . . in order to solve problems we don’t even know are problems yet.”

Y12 Psychology Careers Talks

Y12 Psychology students heard from a range of different psychologists during careers fortnight. The careers talks were a fascinating insight into how psychology is used in the real world and gave the students a good understanding of careers in this field.

The guest speakers were as follows:

Dr Sophie Parker (Consultant Clinical Psychologist & Senior Lecturer), Greater Manchester Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust (GMMH) and the University of Manchester is the Director for the Youth Mental Health Research Unit, and based within the Psychosis Research Unit (PRU). The mission of the Youth Mental Health Research Unit is to undertake outstanding and innovative mental health research for young people. With young people at the heart of everything we do, our research will improve access to evidence based treatments and support which makes a difference in the real world.
Whilst the unit has a number of research themes, Dr Parker’s research has focussed on prevention and early intervention where she helped found and manage a service aimed at identifying and treating young people at risk of psychosis. This NHS service was the first in Europe and second in the world only to the prototype service established in Australia. This service has been the clinical research platform for several studies that have had major impact on clinical practice/policy in which she was centrally involved. For example, leading directly to recommended treatments in NICE guidelines for schizophrenia and psychosis in both adults and children and young people (CG155 & CG178). She has progressed the field by developing criteria for young people at risk of bipolar disorder and developing and testing interventions for this group. She has developed and validated a screening instrument to detect young people at high risk of developing psychosis for use in primary care and more recently she has expanded this research to develop novel interventions for young people at risk of psychosis, such as running a clinical trial of metacognitive therapy. She is co-investigator of a multi-site NIHR HTA funded trial in the group at risk of psychosis that focusses on social disability and has been funded by the National Institute for Health Research to trial another innovative therapy, Attention Training, in psychosis.

Dr George Thomas, BFET’s educational psychologist gave an interesting insight into his role and useful advice on how to become an educational psychologist.

Emma Tarpey is an experienced HCPC Registered and BPS Chartered Psychologist. She has worked within the criminal justice field for over fifteen years and has a wealth of experience working with offenders.
she currently works on the BPS accredited MSc Forensic Psychology at Manchester Metropolitan University

Suzanne Guest is an Occupational Psychologist who has worked in various areas of rehab. She specialises in working with people with acquired brain injury and supports them back to work, or meaningful activity. Suzanne is an active volunteer with Headway-The Brain Injury Association on a local and national level.
Suzanne has been asked to comment on various psychological issues by BBC Breakfast, That’s TV and various printed publications.

Dr Jenny Hardy currently teaches across a number of undergraduate and postgraduate modules. Her main research interests are in offender resettlement and treatment and women in the Criminal Justice System. Jenny’s primary interests are in applied forensic psychology, specifically in the improvement of methods of treating offenders and offender resettlement. Jenny is a member of the British Psychological Society’s Division of Forensic Psychology.

Drugsense Talk

On Tuesday 15th October students from Years 9-13 listened to a series of drugs talks given by Dave Parvin from Drug Sense UK. Dave was very professional in his delivery and has had first-hand experience in the police force dealing with drug dealers so was well equipped with his knowledge of drug use. The talks were quite hard hitting and pitched at the right level for each year group. The students were visibly engaged in learning the facts and dispelling myths about a variety of drugs and their use. It raised their awareness of the effects and danger of using drugs with their peers particularly when alcohol is involved.

Year 11 Careers Morning


The purpose of the morning is to get Y11 to think about their Post 16 options and to encourage them to think more widely about all of the options and opportunities available to them and to make a better informed decision about their future.

Y11 heard from a range of speakers who explained about the differences between 6th forms and colleges, college life and choices, the benefits of higher education, higher/degree apprenticeships and A-Level choices and also a specific talk at lunchtime about “Why choose medicine?”. We would like to thank Manchester College, Trafford Connexions, The Growth Company and The University of Manchester for coming into school to deliver the presentations.  Year 11 also heard from some of our Y12 students about their particular experiences of choosing A-Level options and how they found the transition to 6th form.

Y12 Charities talks

On 12 September we welcomed a number of volunteer charities into school to talk to our Year 12s about the benefits of volunteering and the opportunities on offer. Thank you to the Wellspring – a homeless charity, Cyril Flint – a befriending charity for older people, the Girl Guiding Association and the North West Air Ambulance. Hopefully their presentations have inspired Year 12 to help make a difference.

Careerspeak – Talk on Architecture

Anita Chan from Bowker Sadler Architecture came in to school Thursday lunchtime 19th September to talk to a large audience of Years 9, 10, 11, 12 and 13 students. She was fantastic, very honest and very passionate, particularly about the lack of female architects and also the % of drop outs at university. She talked about what inspired her into this career and what qualities and qualifications are required.

She was very generous of her time talking to individual students after the talk, where she had clearly prompted their interest and curiosity. Also asking them to get in touch with her if they needed any more advice or information.

Luckily we do have many of the art students (and non-art students) who do go on to study architecture and hopefully Anita has inspired more to do so.

Manchester Digital Her Roadshow

On Tuesday 14 May x10 Year 8 students attended the Manchester Digital Her Roadshow at the Mercure, Bowdon Hotel. The day was put together with volunteers from GCHQ, Autotrader, Manchester Science Partnerships and Bjss. The event was aimed at inspiring and empowering young girls to work in the digital and tech industry. It was a very interactive and engaging day where students were involved in speed networking with meeting the role models and a workshop with GCHQ designed to give students a brief look at the sort of technical work that might be done in their organisation. It showed them the importance of things like online safety, good password creation, how to decode a piece of text and the basics of understanding the benefits of a computer programme.

The second workshop with Bjss was learning all about the client / business relationship and understanding your customer’s needs.

Over lunch the students were able to have a go at the VR experience which UA92 had brought along. One student wore the VR goggles and had to relay instructions to the rest of the team on how to get out of a maze.

The final workshop of the day was with Autotrader. Working in groups, they learnt how to complete a role model profile, how a tech business works and how to build a website.

The day concluded with 2 inspirational women speakers from Microsoft and NW EHealth. The students all came away from the day feeling very empowered and inspired to take up careers in the digital and tech industry

< if she can see it, she can be it>

Year 8 WoW Day

On Thursday, 2nd May we held our World of Work (WoW) Day for our Year 8 students. We invited in 8 of our alumnae to deliver a series of talks on what they have done since leaving AGGS. One of the alumnae, who lives all the way over on the other side of the World in Australia, supported the day by sending her talk by a video link!

The aim of the day was to open the students up to an array of different careers and opportunities on offer after they leave school and to think about the different skills needed. Assemblies and form time sessions were delivered over the week to help them to think about what skills they already have, and how they can develop and build upon these skills in and out of school for their future careers.

“We are currently preparing students for jobs that don’t yet exist . . . using technologies that haven’t been invented . . . in order to solve problems we don’t even know are problems yet.”

Thank you to all of our alumnae volunteers for giving up their time to help us with this day. It is always lovely to welcome back our former students; current AGGS students thoroughly enjoyed hearing from those who were once in their shoes.

RAF talk 28 September

Year 9 and 10 linguists enjoyed a talk given by Flight Lieutenant Gemma Slaughter, who works as a linguist for the RAF. There are over 60 jobs in RAF, with only 5% of those employed working with planes. There are lots of opportunities for sport and adventure training, as team building is key. Intelligence linguists are deployed across the world. Translating plays a key role in the peacekeeping role. Language analysis could involve cyber analysis, communication intelligence and surveillance. Pupils enjoyed listening to Gemma’s experiences of using her knowledge of Arabic and Pashto working in Afghanistan. Pupils learnt some key vocabulary in Pashto and used this to interpret a series of messages, saying when and where an attack was due to take place and what type of attack was being.