Students in Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire to be beamed into their future careers using virtual reality

In a move set to bring post-school career choices to life following the pandemic, every key stage four state school pupil in the Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire area will be given access to a virtual reality careers platform via their school.

Launch Your Career, a company that is rebelling against the cliché of boring, irrelevant careers advice, is providing all secondary schools in the area with access to its careers guidance platform. The scheme will run from Autumn 2021 for a period of 12 months and schools will also receive 25 free cardboard VR headsets each, interactive games, career skills tasks such as CV writing and succeeding in interviews, plus worksheets and much more.

Working in conjunction with D2N2, the region’s local enterprise partnership, students in their GCSE years will use Launch Your Career to conduct a short personality quiz and then explore what careers might suit them via virtual reality.

The system is capable of taking students on virtual reality tours of local employers and further and higher education institutions. They can visit the lecture halls and workshops of the local college or peek inside the doors of a business they think would suit them.

Greg Parker, career-led learning director at Launch Your Career, said: “You can’t be what you can’t see. We need to show young people all the exciting career options that are out there, otherwise they will simply limit their dreams to what their mum or dad did or what they saw on TV.

“We want to drive the growth of this dynamic region following the pandemic and immersing children in a virtual reality world where they can literally walk through alternative career pathways is exactly what is needed to inspire our future workforce.”

Dan Heffernan, careers and young people lead at D2N2, said: “We have higher than average levels of unemployment among 16 to 25-year-olds across our region. At the same time, there are around 63,000 vacancies with employers in our area and apprenticeship opportunities are going unfilled.  

“Using innovative technology like virtual reality will help to bridge this gap by raising awareness, raising aspirations and bringing to life all the amazing opportunities available to young people.”

The system can also be used via a standard web browser so students can access the information they need whether or not they have access to a VR headset.

D2N2 and Launch Your Career are encouraging local employers to have their businesses featured in the virtual reality workspace to expose students to suitable careers options close to home. Any businesses interested should visit www.launchyourcareer.com/employer

Schools in the region can sign up for the activation programme at www.launchyourcareer.com/register

Launch Your Career aims to level up the careers path. Every young person should know the opportunities available to have a world-class start in life, regardless of where they are born. Built on engagement, gamification and fun, Launch Your Career immerses young people in their career journey. With a VR headset, students are absorbed in a quest to find out about jobs that interest them and what they need to do to secure them. It’s the perfect tool to revitalise careers advice.

Launch Your Career is the brainchild of digital innovation experts Dev Clever.