The Welwyn Hatfield Careers Fair, 11 October, provided a platform for over 800 students to meet and interact directly with 32 major employers, and learn about the career opportunities available on their doorstep.

The event was organised by Enterprise Advisers from Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council together with pharmaceuticals giant Roche Products Ltd., as part of the Careers & Enterprise Company programme run within the county by Hertfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP).

The event drew students from eight local schools including Monk’s Walk, Bishop’s Hatfield, Chancellors, Onslow St Audrey’s, Stanborough, Ridgeway, Lakeside and Knightsfield.

Held at Roche’s UK head office in Welwyn Garden City, it featured exhibitions from 32 local and national businesses, including MBDA, Brocket Hall, Hertfordshire Fire and Rescue, Waitrose and John Lewis, and Lamborghini. The fair was opened by Welwyn Hatfield MP, Grant Shapps and the High Sheriff of Hertfordshire, Sarah Beazley, both pictured above.

Gareth Dace, Careers Hub Lead at Hertfordshire LEP, said: “Our Enterprise Advisers strengthen ties between schools and businesses in order to better prepare students for the world of work, and the Welwyn Hatfield Careers Fair is a fantastic example of this partnership-working in action.

"Events like this inspire young people to think about their future careers at an early age, and offer the invaluable opportunity to interact with employers and hear about the different routes to employment, from graduate placements to apprenticeships.”

Cllr Bernard Sarson, Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council, said: “Our careers fair offered students from schools across the borough an insight into the huge range of career paths available locally, at a time when they have some big decisions to make.

“We are committed to providing employment and learning opportunities to people starting out their careers. I hope that all of the students who attended left feeling confident about their aspirations, and that speaking to businesses will encourage them to pursue their full potential.”

Alex Phipps, Early Research and Development Site Head, Roche Products Ltd., said: “We were delighted to have the chance to welcome the local community to this new event. For the children to learn first-hand about the world of opportunity that awaits them after school is really important so that they can start thinking about their future career decisions ahead of time.

"We were very grateful to all the businesses that exhibited on the day and made it so memorable for the children.”

Nick Haynes, Assistant Headteacher, Monk’s Walk School, said: “Monk's Walk students were delighted to be able to attend the careers fair at Roche. It presented them with a fantastic opportunity to meet future employers from a wide variety of sectors to discuss apprenticeships, training schemes and graduate recruitment.

"Students and staff are very grateful for Roche for hosting the event, along with the support from Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council. Thank you to all the organisations and companies who have generously made time available to offer invaluable information and advice to the students.”

Learn more about the Careers & Enterprise Company Programme in Hertfordshire, and the LEP’s growing network of Enterprise Advisers.

Read: Hertfordshire LEP wins bid for new Careers Hub