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Students visit Santander Head Office in London

Seventeen first year students from King Edward VI College recently visited the head offices of Santander in London as part of the Business Career Academy programme.

The students arrived at the offices in Triton Square mid morning where they were welcomed by Rachel Morrison, Director of Tax and Finance Governance.

Rachel Morrison said “We are very proud of our work with Career Academies and we were pleased to able to host the students from King Edward VI College on a visit to our head office in London as part of our partnership with them.

“We know that finance can seem a daunting world and we’re keen to encourage young people to think about the sector as a future career. With a tour of our trading floor and a lecture from one of our senior managers on management accounting we provided the students with an insight into a corporate environment. We’ve hopefully helped to demystify our industry a little, and inspired them to think about the range of opportunities that are there for them when they finish their studies.”

Santander’s Matthew Garrett and Peadar McCabe then gave a tour of the trading floor where the young learners were able to see how the different sections worked and get a feel of the importance of the deals taking place.

Adrian Peberdy, Business Curriculum Area Manager at the college said “Seeing the trading floor inspired the students, they commented on the IT infrastructure, the importance of deals that are being made on the floor and how finance is so vital for businesses to function.”

“Many of them were intrigued by the truly global interaction taking place with traders calling all around the world, in order to get business done.”

After lunch, a presentation on costs and budget was given by Mike Matthews, Head of Costs. The interaction was well planned and delivered to a very high standard. The students clearly made progress with their understanding of the topic.

Student Thomas Fuller said, “Visiting Santander has been a high point in the career academy programme. All members of staff spoke to us with respect and the presentation we were given was exceptional. I would highly recommend anyone to visit the bank if given the opportunity and would seriously consider them as an employer in my future. Thank you Santander.”

The partnership with Career Academies UK is part of Santander’s WorkWise programme. This initiative aims to support people interested in developing their career and looking to fulfil their potential. The programme features specific initiatives for 16 year old school leavers, A-level students and graduates, as well as unemployed people or those looking to make a career change.

Jack Guise, a first year student said “I thought the trip to Santander was really enjoyable, the staff there were really friendly and answered any questions we asked. The environment they work in looked challenging yet rewarding and it is something I wouldn’t mind doing in the future. The tour we were given was helpful in understanding how a bank works and trades, I particularly liked the presentation and activity we did on budgeting.”

After they left Santander the students then went onto the London Metal Exchange,the world centre for industrial metals trading and price-risk management. Jack continued “I also enjoyed the visit to the LME, it was a really high pressure environment and was very enjoyable to watch.”

Sam Gawn, Business Academy Co-ordinator said “The Business Career Academy is such a valuable programme that we can offer our students. They benefit from their own business mentor, a six week internship during the summer and a wide range of trips and lectures over the two years. We are hugely grateful to Santander for all their support and it is fantastic that our students are able to benefit from the opportunities they offer”

If you are interested in finding out more about the college or the Business Career Academy programme please contact Sam Gawn Or come along to the Information Evening on 3rd April.

Career Academies UK is a charity that leads and supports employers, Colleges and colleges, bringing them together to raise the aspirations of 16 to 19-year-olds across the country. Career Academy students follow a rigorous two-year programme which aims to boost their employability skills by giving them real life experience of the workplace, alongside a school or college study.

Nationally, 95% of Career Academy graduates go on to higher education, or an equivalent level of work-related training, compared with a predicted 40% based on their GCSE performance at the start of the programme.

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