Annual careers fair bigger and better than ever

Sheila Palmer with Wilma Johnston from ASDA with Cross and Passion students Ciara McCollum and Ciara McGowan.
Sheila Palmer with Wilma Johnston from ASDA with Cross and Passion students Ciara McCollum and Ciara McGowan.

More exhibitors, more practical advice and more schools than ever before; these are just some of the reasons why the annual Causeway Business Education Partnership (CBEP) Careers Fair, remains the biggest and best-attended careers fair for school leavers in the Causeway area.

The careers fair which is funded by the Department of Education and the Causeway Business Education Partnership and event management of Causeway Enterprise Agency is now in its 18th year. The fair is a highly valued event in the school calendar and is widely regarded by teachers, students and exhibitors as the schools careers event of the year, consistently attracting in excess of 900 students’ representing all of the post primary schools in the borough.

The event runs for one day and is open to all post primary schools in the boroughs of Coleraine, Ballymoney and Moyle. It’s all geared towards helping school leavers discover more about the different career paths open to them and consists of a wide selection of exhibitor stands; including employers, further education colleges and universities, apprenticeships, training organisations, recruitment agencies and career information stands.

The CBEP annual careers fair always enjoys a good turn-out but this year organisers were particularly delighted with increased attendance. The event attracted 1,076 pupils from 14 post primary schools throughout Coleraine, Ballymoney and Moyle. There were also a record number of exhibitors including 21 colleges and universities from throughout the UK. Some of the biggest names in recruitment and training also exhibited alongside some of the region’s biggest employers such as Wright Bus, Bombardier, W5 and Armstrong Medical as well as ASDA and J Sainsbury.

Representatives from Fire & Rescue, the Army, the Royal Navy and the RAF were also on hand to highlight career opportunities within these organisations. And the Electrical Training Trust ran demonstrations of the skills needed for a career in the electrical engineering industry.

Jayne Taggart Chief Executive at CEA the organisation behind the running of the Fair said: “The CBEP Careers Fair is aimed at school-leavers and aims to provide them with the best possible experience and the most useful information in one trip. In order to make the most of the event schools are all offered workshops to help students prepare and to understand the sorts of questions they should be asking.

“This preparation combined with the wide range of exhibitors on offer means that whether they are looking for advice on specific career options, training or learning opportunities, or if they simply want to explore the options available to them when they leave school this event makes it possible for them to find it all under one roof.

“This year we experienced growth in the number of pupils attending and in the range of exhibitors which reflects how important the event is and we are delighted to continue to work on the organisation of the careers fair which is a Causeway Business Education Partnership Event funded by the Department of Education.”