Neena has been an Enterprise Adviser (EA) since 2017 and is matched with Harlington School, a secondary school in Hillingdon.
Neena views the Enterprise Adviser network as a long overdue partnership and a natural future trajectory between employers and educators. As with any organisation schools are faced with enormous complex challenges; by collaborating business experience with education experience EAs can bring to life the vision of bright futures for our next generation.
As well as allowing her to give back to her local community, Neena has been able to transfer her strategic and networking skills to the school, as well as bringing an alternative perspective to the school's careers offering.
Neena works closely with the career’s leader, who is also the school's Deputy Head; Temitope Osekita. She has helped the school to think about all the networking opportunities available to them. She has engaged the parents with careers, helping the school to not just see them as the student’s guardians but also as influential individuals from a range of businesses. She's worked on bringing all stakeholders across the school (including governors, teachers and students) together.
Neena has also increased the number of employers engaging with the school’s careers activities by leveraging her networks. She has initiated exploring training days for teachers at British Airways and she has connected with "Science in a Box" – a resource set up by Pfizer to teach students about the range of careers opportunities that exist in the science and medical sectors.
She has aligned her HR experience with her EA role, introducing new initiatives that are drawn from HR concepts such as looking at student satisfaction and student voice.
Neena has been active in providing the students with increased understanding of the range of opportunities open to them upon leaving Harlington School. She is proactively supporting the school to think about the diversity of opportunities that they are talking about and offering their students. She has collaborated with the career's leader on their recent careers fair. Students attended workshops on apprenticeships, and STEM careers and heard from former students of the school. This was a successful and informative day, allowing students to hear about careers ranging from hair dressing to firefighting to medicine.
Neena has also mapped the careers activity with the mindset of a marketing professional. She’s helping the school to value, invest in and develop their digital footprint. She helped illuminate some of the fantastic activities that they have been doing via a blog of their recent careers fair.
Overall Neena has seen the greatest input to the programme as her ability to bring a business perspective to the school.
In return, she has learnt a lot about the career conversations happening in schools and how they can be leveraged to produce better outcomes for students.
"Neena's support has been pivotal in our interventions to meet the Gatsby award. She has been willing to attend meetings, look through plans and act as a critical friend." Temitope Osekita, Deputy Headteacher, Harlington School.
She works collaboratively with the careers leader and has found this strong relationship invaluable. She believes in the fact that Enterprise Advisers do not work alone to improve careers prospects for students, but work in collaboration with the whole school.
Follow Neena on @NeenaSpeding