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Variohm and Year 11 Employability Day at Silverstone UTC

Variohm have recently partnered with a local collage – Silverstone UTC. They specialise in education in areas closely linked with our business; High-Performance Engineering, Motorsport and Business & Technical events.

Earlier in January, Silverstone UTC hosted an event for their students “Employability Day” where people from local businesses were invited to come and talk to the students in a speed dating style set up. Two members from the Variohm team attended – Maisie Stanford who works in our marketing department and also looks after export progressing and currently studying CIM marketing qualifications, and Jacob Upton, our Engineering technician who is currently completing his apprenticeship.

The Purpose of the Event

Silverstone UTC often hosts this type of event to give their students an opportunity to ask questions and find out more about different routes into working in this industry. In addition to the speed dating section, businesses were also invited to give presentations and workshops about specific occupations and sectors to small groups. 

The students were encouraged to ask people how they got to where they are in their career and what career path they took. It is important that they understand there isn’t a “one size fits all” and there are different routes available.

Maisie and Jacob’s Experience

Maisie and Jacob are both currently completing qualifications whilst working at Variohm, we thought it would be good for them to share their experience with the students at Silverstone UTC as the route they have taken to their careers hasn’t been the more traditional university route.

They spoke to 40-80 students over a two hour period. Many of the students asked questions such as;

  • What are your day to day activities?
  • How is your work-life balance?
  • How did you get to where you are now in your job?
  • How did you deal with exam stress?
  • What was your career path?

Maisie and Jacob both felt that they were able to give good advice to the students asking these questions and were even able to explain things that they wish they had known when they were at school/ college.

Jacob said the most important message he was giving was “University isn’t always the best way to get to where you want to go; some students thought you had to go to university, but I explained about going through the apprenticeship route which also gains you not only qualifications but valuable experience in the industry.”

Maisie says “The students found it interesting that when I was at school, I wanted to do a very different job to the one I am in now and how I chose to leave university despite being told that university was the ‘best’ option for me if I wanted to succeed. It is completely acceptable to not know exactly what job or career path you want to take, do what makes you happy without making any quick decisions, a straight path is not always the best path.”

Overall Maisie and Jacob found the experience rewarding and have both said they would be happy to do something similar in the future.

Having Variohm employees attend this event has helped to make the students more aware of what we can offer and different aspects of engineering which they can get involved in. We hope that our employees have been able to inspire the students to think of different paths to their career and think outside the box.

Engineering at Variohm

Over the years engineering at Variohm has grown substantially; Jacob is the third engineering apprentice we have employed here at Variohm, Nathan and Jordan joined the team as apprentices and are now fully qualified.

As well as an engineering department we have a full production facility where some of our sensors are manufactured and modified.

Find out more about engineering at Variohm by reading our previous blog posts;

If you would like to inquire more about engineering opportunities at Variohm please contact us.

More About Silverstone UTC

Silverstone UTC is for students aged 14-19 and provides a unique curriculum around High-Performance Engineering and Business & Technical Events subjects. They operate in a business-like environment preparing the students for employability beyond education.

For more information please visit their website.

Article published on: 24/01/2020