Lancashire executive to advise on new national careers company

Leading Lancashire business woman, Karen O’Donoghue, has been invited to advise on the formation of a new national careers and enterprise company announced by the government.

Karen will join sector leaders and representatives from education and business as part of a national advisory group to oversee the establishment of the new independent company.

Following the announcement last week, a new national company will be created to transform the provision of careers education and advice for young people and intends to inspire opportunities offered by the world of work. A £5 million investment fund has been allocated to support and generate innovation in careers advice.

Karen will continue her role as chief executive of The Via Partnership, a social business based in Leyland, whose core purpose is to improve skills and increase employability by working with individuals, schools and businesses across Lancashire.

The wealth of sector experience and knowledge that Karen holds also led to her to be elected in 2013 as President of the Career Development Institute, the leading independent professional body for careers practitioners. Karen is also a Director of the careers sector trade body, Careers England, where she leads on workforce development.

Karen said: “It is a real honour to be approached to play a key role in advising the board in its early stages and I am pleased that the Government is making this investment in our young people at such a crucial point in their lives.

“The development of the new company could be a real opportunity to investigate, review and develop careers provision for young people, independent of government."

The employer-led company will facilitate links between education and business to ensure young people are supported with decision making and career development throughout their time in education. Employers will be able to interact with young people about the world of work and, supported by quality careers guidance, this will allow students to make informed choices. The company will work in partnership to spread careers advice, guidance and inspiration to every young person from 12-18 years old across the country, regardless of their background or location.