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Students to be given direct contact with businesses to improve employability

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Thousands of young people across England are to be put directly in touch with local businesses to improve their careers advice as part of an ambitious new scheme.

The British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) has today announced it will hold 250 career events to bring together thousands of pupils, businesses, schools, colleges and training providers to improve young people’s career prospects.

The “Your Future” programme, supported by the Skills Funding Agency, will give 70,000 young people access to potential employers, showcase the range of career options open to them, and help them to plan their future to take advantage of these opportunities. It will also give businesses a platform to meet potential future employees and to talk about the skills and qualities they look for when recruiting.

The programme will launch at the end of this month and will run until March 2016.

BCC director general John Longworth said that unless young people have access to “relevant, complete, and engaging information” about careers, the gap between education and the world of work would continue to grow.  

"By connecting the employees of tomorrow with local businesses, we are helping each to improve their understanding of the other,” he said.

“That means young people will be better able to prepare for the careers they want – whether that is through an apprenticeship, further training or higher education - and businesses will have the chance to meet the talent they need to thrive and grow.”

In its annual Workforce Survey last October the BCC said stronger links must be formed between schools, colleges and businesses.

The survey of almost 3,000 companies revealed that 88 per cent of businesses believed school leavers were unprepared for the world of work.

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