Increasingly, businesses expect school leavers and graduates to demonstrate an understanding of the business world and to be equipped with relevant skills, with an increased emphasis on vocational education.

In addition to vocational education, there are a number of benefits for companies like Haymarket in partnering with high-quality schools and colleges. Being in close touch with young people – the next generation of employees and customers – and knowing what they are thinking and doing helps businesses to plan and adapt.

Benefits to businesses include:

  • Input into the vocational education of young people moving from school to college and on to the workplace
  • A deeper talent pool of educated and entrepreneurial young people
  • Insight from the generation born into the digital world
  • Exposure to developing trends
  • Being part of a centre of excellence of national significance
  • Focus groups with students who can tell them what young people are thinking and what their aspirations are
  • Greater awareness of young people’s interests and priorities as they prepare to begin their careers
  • Helping businesses stand out as an employer of choice

And specifically for students:

  • Careers advice for students
  • Modern Apprenticeships for College leavers
  • Mentoring from skilled professionals
  • Exciting opportunities, not available in most school settings, that will inspire students

Apart from curriculum input, the visiting lecturer and workshop programme and work experience placements, joint activities between the College, secondary school, Clarendon School, Haymarket, Harlequins and other local employers may include inviting students to participate in student focus groups; user testing and evaluation of new products and concepts; “Dragons’ Den” style initiatives where tasks and challenges are set and concepts assessed.

How this is being progressed

Curriculum planning is underway, along with the first stages of the visiting lecturer and work experience programmes.

The Haymarket “tech hub” will comprise digital labs, state of the art photographic studios, photographic archive, listening rooms for its consumer electronics brands and a gallery where creative and digital teams can showcase their best work. Around 20 of Haymarket’s creative and digital experts will be based full-time at the hub which will be accessed by students through the Haymarket Skills Academy.

As part of the “tech hub”, Haymarket is launching a media incubator which will see the company provide seed funding investment to bright young media entrepreneurs and tech startups.  The media incubator will also provide work space and access to “tech hub” facilities and expertise. Entrepreneurs and startups in the media incubator will also benefit from Haymarket’s Market Development Planning (MDP) process which helps the company to be dynamic, rapidly assessing new development ideas and investing in the best ones to grow its business.

The College will create a profit-sharing mutual ownership model for its learners studying within the commercial facing services industries including the restaurants, beauty/spa, gymnasium and automotive facilities.