This week’s Staff Spotlight will be focusing on Alastair Hendry, Employability Support Officer at East Lothian Works. Having been a member of the team since September 2018, Alastair has been working hard to provide employment support to adults in the county. I sat down and asked him some questions: Continue reading Staff Spotlight: An Interview with Alastair Hendry
This post marks the beginning of a new series on this blog. We will be focusing on members of staff in East Lothian Works that work with adults and young people out of school in order to aid them in finding employment. Each week we will delve into the work that the individual in question does, and how it may help you in the future. This week, we are focusing on Andy Stuckey, ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) Coordinator. Continue reading Staff Spotlight: An Interview with Andy Stuckey
In the middle of June the Royal Highland Show took place in Edinburgh, showcasing the best of Scotland’s agriculture. Focusing on rural life, the Highland Show gives visitors the opportunity to take part in workshops, watch shows, listen to music, and eat Scottish food. This year select individuals, in partnership with East Lothian Works, took the opportunity to go along to the world-renowned event to have a look for themselves. Continue reading Highland Show Visit
A group of East Lothian Works’ young people took a trip to Tantallon Castle the other day, giving them the opportunity to visit one of East Lothian’s most iconic landmarks. The trip took place to allow these individuals to expand their knowledge of the local wildlife and local history. The students had a fantastic time on the visit, finding out new information that they didn’t know before. This trip was planned as part of East Lothian Works’ Activity Agreements programme, which aids young people in learning new skills and gaining new experiences.
If you’d like to find out more about other activities these young people have experienced, have a read of our photography exhibition post here.
On the Wednesday morning of the 19th of June I was fortunate enough to attend one of East Lothian Council’s English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) class. Run by Andy Stuckey, the lesson took place on the grounds of Musselburgh Burgh Primary School, providing the class with the perfect setting to learn English. Continue reading English for Speakers of Other Languages Class
Modern Apprentice Cameron Shaw was kind enough to take time out of his day to answer my many questions I had about him, and his experiences as an apprentice at East Lothian Works. Modern Apprenticeships give those no longer in school the opportunity to earn a wage while also getting an industry-recognised qualification, and invaluable work experience. If you’d like to learn more, check out Skills Development Scotland’s page on Modern Apprenticeships here.
What is your current job role and where do you work?
I am a Modern Apprentice in Business Admin at East Lothian Works; East Lothian Council’s employability hub.
What Modern Apprenticeship did you undertake?
I did the Modern Apprenticeship in Business Administration.
What made you decide to do a Modern Apprenticeship
I wasn’t interested in taking part in further education, and I wanted to get into the world of work. I thought that doing a Modern Apprenticeship would be a good opportunity to do this.
How are you finding the experience?
It’s great – I’m really enjoying it!
What benefits have you found to being a Modern Apprentice?
I like that I can learn while earning money at the same time. I’m also gaining experience which can be valuable in the future.
Are there any disadvantages to doing a Modern Apprenticeship?
I can’t think of any!
What did you do before this?
I was at high school before taking part in the Modern Apprenticeship.
Do you know what you want to do once your Apprenticeship is finished?
I would really like to get a full-time contract with East Lothian Council to continue doing this line of work.
Do you have anything you would like to say to those continuing undertaking a Modern Apprenticeship?
Definitely go for it! It gets you straight into employment and the work environment.
I would like to take this time to thank Cameron for answering my questions, as I know his schedule is quite busy. It is greatly appreciated!
Last week, Edinburgh College and East Lothian Works staff joined adult learners to celebrate their achievements, completing qualifications in Early Learning & Childcare, and in Health & Social Care. Collaborating with Edinburgh College, East Lothian Works runs the Skills for Work programme that these learners engaged with, building the skills, experience, and confidence to pursue new careers in Early Years, or Health & Social Care settings.
David Dalgleish (Skills for Work Development at East Lothian Works) was there to join in the celebration with graduates, commenting:
“It is so rewarding to see our learners grow in confidence and develop throughout their time with us, as their learning journey takes them to their next stage; whether it’s further study, work, or volunteering”.
Our introductory courses in Early Learning & Childcare, and Health & Social Care are now enrolling again, ahead of the programme restarting at the end of August. Running on term-time Monday mornings, your studies can fit in with your busy life; there’s lots of additional employability support on offer, plus help with travel costs and free crèche places also. To find out more, call 01620 827 262, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
I’d like to extend a huge congratulations to these learners for all their effort, and for achieving their goals!
On the 14th of June, a group of young people arrived at Prestongrange Museum to showcase their photography to East Lothian residents. These individuals have been working throughout the year on their photography skills, aided by Room 8 Studio photographer Holger Mohaupt, resulting in this grand showcase of the culmination of a year of hard work. Many students often struggle with the transition from secondary school on to another positive destination, and therefore Activity Agreements such as this allows young people to advance their confidence and self-esteem, as well as their skills.
When I arrived at Prestongrange Museum I was firstly stunned by the beauty of the location. I could see why it was chosen as the subject of the photographs on display. Looking at the students’ work, it was clear that they were greatly inspired by the scenery around them. The gallery itself was lively; with a significant turnout of family and friends, as well as local residents curious to see the photographs on display. Walking around the room, I could hear nothing but positive comments about the artwork, with many impressed that such a high quality of work could be produced in such a short space of time.
I was keen to talk to the women of the hour; the students who had produced the work. Speaking to Louise, Siobhan, and Amber, it was clear that photography had become a passion for them, with all three hoping to go on to study the subject further once they have left school. Siobhan had even pursued photography further by producing a calendar in collaboration with East Lothian Works, and winning a competition. When asked how they felt having their work on display, Louise and Siobhan agreed that it was a really cool experience, while Amber stated that it was quite nerve-wracking to have other people look at, and critique, your work. However she had no need to worry, as the entire exhibition had people leaving with a smile on their face, and positive comments were passed all around.
The photographer who aided the students in their course, Holger Mohaupt, had a few works to say about the young people he had spent the year working with. He said the student should be incredible proud of what they had done, and that their work shows the quality you can achieve simply with a good idea on your mind.
These young people should be very proud of the work they have achieved, and I wish them all the best in pursuing photography further once they leave school. I would like to thank Kat and Karen for inviting me along to the exhibition. It was a joy to see the works on display.
Images © Holger Mohaupt