Beever and Struthers helps high school students prepare for work

Accountants and business advisers Beever and Struthers has helped students at Blackburn Central High School to explore career opportunities.

Blackburn Central High School

Seventeen Year 8 students were selected for mentoring by staff at Beever and Struthers, meeting them three times a year to raise their aspirations, confidence, self-esteem and achievements until they graduate in 2022.

As part of the programme, Beever and Struthers has hosted Lunch and Learn, events which invite other professional intermediaries from sectors such as banking, law and financial consultancy to attend, so pupils receive advice on other potential careers.

The firm also offered work experience opportunities and conducted mock interviews that included a review of CVs.

The mentoring programme is part of a commitment by Beever and Struthers to give something back to the communities in which it operates, with many of its 18 partners and 170-plus staff involved with charities and schools as trustees, governors and volunteers and the firm proactively contributing to society via community, sponsorship, charity, skills and employability initiatives.

Andy McLaren, training partner with Beever and Struthers, said: “Our research of mentoring opportunities for students in Lancashire showed that BCHS was a school where we could become a mentor of students to help in the development of key employability skills, while nurturing academic excellence.

"Buoyed by the ongoing success of our partnership with BCHS, we are keen to promote accounting as a career to students at schools, colleges and universities where there’s an opportunity to raise awareness academically, technically and ultimately, with a focus on employability.”

Jo Rigby, HR director with the firm, said “Recruitment is becoming more difficult year on year, not just because of a shortage of candidates in some areas but also a difficulty in finding the right candidate .

"At Beever and Struthers we like to grow as much as we can from within and the apprenticeship programmes are an ideal way for us to achieve this. We have for some years offered finance-based apprenticeships, but we also offer apprenticeships in some of our support functions – IT, marketing and office admin to name a few. "Partnering with BCHS in this way allows us to raise awareness that we are more than just a finance firm and also helps the students understand their potential career options and the skillsets we are looking for."