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Generation Innovation Re-Imagining Work Experience

Added Wednesday, June 27 2018

From Friday 15th until Wednesday 20thJune 2018, 61 lower sixth students from 32 schools across NI came together under one roof to participate in a unique work experience programme designed in collaboration with Deloitte and delivered with 10 of NI’s most innovative companies. The programme was held primarily at Ormeau Baths and we were also delighted to welcome the young people here to Catalyst Inc

Re-Imagining Work Experience kicked off with a Friday evening of team building and ice breakers facilitated by Lucy Mc Kenna. Lucy is the founder of Full Aeon who has a core belief that each individual has their own “vital force”, something great to bring to this world, and they should have the opportunity to explore and live this. This was the first opportunity for the young people and their chosen innovative companies to get to know each other. The evening culminated in a BBQ at Café 1404 beside Catalyst Inc. 

The students then broke for the weekend and Monday morning saw the official launch of the programme when the students spent the day at Ormeau Baths learning about the Design Thinking Process with local design agency Big Motive and participated in a series of tasks that put their new-found skills to action. 

Day Two saw the teams working on real business challenges set by their chosen company ranging from‘how to illustrate sub-surface data to enable a team to work efficiently’ to ‘designing a way to move 300 – 360 staff to one building’..They used the five stages of Design Thinking to come up with a prototype solution in response to the challenges set by the companies. Each team then practiced their pitch in preparation for visiting their company offices the following day. 

The final day saw the students setting off to pitch their solutions and learnings to the Senior Management team of their chosen innovation companies. Visiting the company offices provided the young people with a deeper understanding and awareness of the businesses together with the opportunity to meet other members of staff.

A celebration of their success took place that afternoon where they each presented back to the wider group of students on their experience at their host companies. They each received a certificate of achievement and celebrated over donuts – If only all working weeks could end like that! 

A huge thank you goes to all the companies that helped to make Generation Innovation Re-Imagining Work Experience possible: Big Motive, Full Aeon, Ormeau Baths, Verint, RPS, CDE Global, Surecert, Deloitte, Allstate, Anaeko, Automated Intelligence, Instil and Little Citizens 

Each young person completed a 21stCentury Skills assessment before and after the programme.  Results indicated a significant increase in confidence in communication, idea generation, team working and actively seeking feedback. Several young people have secured placements and summer jobs with the companies and the programme scored a Net Promoter Score of 84.  The most common suggestion for improvement was ‘extend the duration of the programme’.

We simply couldn’t have done it without you and cannot thank you enough! 

“Thank you for creating this program as it has been such a fantastic opportunity to meet really innovative and successful companies. I thoroughly enjoyed the three days…learning new techniques as well as solving and then presenting our solution to their problem. It was also a brilliant chance to get to know new people and our team bonded really well throughout the program which is amazing to have new friends who share the same interests as me!” 

“Thank you for this work experience programme, I found Generation Innovation really beneficial and I met some great people in my team. I enjoyed every minute of working on the task and I found that so many of my skills such as communication and teamwork really developed and I learnt so much.  I will definitely be recommending this programme to others and I’m very grateful that I was allowed to be a part of it!” 

Stay tuned for more details on Re-imagining Work Experience June 2019