Students from local special needs schools were recently welcomed at three of our offices to take part in Work Inspiration Weeks.
The weeks, which were organised by our graduates, at times proved both nerve wracking and competitive, as well as inspiring, for the students.
They included a full week of activities to show what life is like working for National Grid and also acted as taster sessions for EmployAbility, our supported internship programme*.
Our Solihull office welcomed eight students from Woodlands and Selly Oak Schools for the week; which included a trip to the Meter Assessment and Recycling Centre, and a visit to Bishops Wood Environmental Centre.
Some of the students thought an activity that involved interviewing employees quite nerve wracking, but found it was a learning opportunity that taught them good interview techniques.
Meanwhile, our Warwick office hosted 19 students from Round Oak School and Warwickshire and Hereward Colleges for the week.
Activities here included a tour to the Leicester Refurbishment Centre, a visit to Bishops Wood Environmental Centre and 10 challenges that ran throughout the week; focusing on teamwork and problem solving.
At Wokingham, eight students from Addington and Brookfields Schools took part, and learned about how the electricity system is balanced. They also bought and sold energy in an Energy Trader role-play session and visited the Iver Environmental Centre. Things got very competitive at times, especially during the lattice-tower building activity.
A highlight at all three offices was the end-of-the week celebrations, when the students spoke about their experiences during the week to an audience of other students, graduates, National Grid managers and teams.
One of the students who visited the Wokingham site said: “I would most certainly come back here for an internship. I felt like an adult as soon as I came through the entrance and adapted to the environment. It’s something different, but I feel ready for whatever challenges it throws at me.”
* EmployAbility – Let’s work together is National Grid’s supported internship programme for young people with learning disabilities.