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Stroud Ambitions back for third year, bigger and better

Stroud Ambitions, one of the county’s largest career fairs, is being held at Stratford Park on Wednesday 11 November 2015.

It starts with daytime interactive workshops with employers for 1,000 Year 9 students of Stroud District schools - important for them as they ponder their upcoming choices for GCSE.

The early evening event follows on from this - between 4:30pm - 7:00pm and is aimed at all adults looking for a new job or career change, as well as students and older school pupils about to take their first steps into the world of work.

There will be up to 70 stalls with experts from 30 job sectors who can give specific advice on their particular fields and provide advice on training. In addition, independent careers advisers, apprenticeship providers, the National Careers Service, Job Centre Plus, local universities, colleges and youth groups will be on hand. Booking is not required for this free event. Anyone interested can just turn up and there will be plenty of parking available at Stratford Park.

Stroud Ambitions is organised by South Gloucestershire and Stroud College in partnership with Stroud District Council.

Cllr Geoff Wheeler, leader of Stroud District Council said: “This event is an important part of our strategy to promote and support local jobs, and connections between schools and local businesses. People need careers advice and this is a one stop shop where they can come and start mapping out their future. The aim is to give a comprehensive guide to employment, further study and skills development for all.”

The selection of careers on offer at the event is considerable. It ranges from construction, where there is a shortage of skilled staff, through to sport and leisure, care work, catering and hairdressing. There will also be experts available who can talk about working in the emergency services, medicine, the law and media. Manufacturing will also be heavily represented, including large local employers such as the engineering firm Renishaw.

One of the companies attending is Arc Energy Resources, an engineering firm that manufactures components used in the renewable, oil, gas, nuclear, water and naval industries.

Arc Energy Resources managing director, Andrew Robinson, said: “This is our first year at Stroud Ambitions and we are really looking forward to it. For anyone thinking about becoming an engineer I would say it is fundamentally a very exciting career where no two days are the same.”

Another company at the event is The Design Co-operative, which is made up of five designers, who are self-employed but work together.

Steve Roberts from The Design Co-operative said: “The work we do is incredibly varied – basically anything that needs graphics and art work, including adverts, books, magazines, banners and exhibitions. We are really pleased to be attending Stroud Ambitions as this is a chance to show what we do and to engage and inspire people to consider pursuing a career in this field.”

One of the more unusual ways of earning a living is with Giffords Circus. Two performers who work with horses will be at Stroud Ambitions, in full costume, along with others such as set designers and front of house staff.

Nell Gifford, owner of the circus said: “We need people with specific skills. If anyone wants to find out more they can come and talk to us about what it is like to be a circus performer or to work behind the scenes in what can, at times, be a thrilling profession.”

John Walker, SGS College's Head of Schools Engagement, pioneer and co-organiser of the event observed: "Ambitions and Stroud District were made for each other - the enthusiasm of local employers' engagement with young people, sharing their skills and passions, is a delight to see. I have no doubt that this practical inspiration and guidance will give many young students a head start into dynamic and rewarding career choices they may never have thought of before."