S3 pupils from Banff Academy heard a presentation from Alan Stewart, a member of the school’s Employment Engagement Board, on how to prepare a CV last month. The CV Surgery looked at addressing what pupils need to include in their CV and highlighted top tips from an employer’s perspective.

The purpose of this event was 2-fold – an opportunity for young people to learn about the world of work and highlight the strengths and skills needed, whilst connecting employers with education.

Following the presentation, pupils had the chance to build their own CVs before presenting them to 16 local employers who volunteered to come into school, offering each student a 10-minute slot to discuss their CVs at the school’s first ever CV Surgery.

Before the Surgery commenced, Helen Hendry, DHT with responsibility for skills development in Banff’s young workforce, outlined to employers where the CV Surgery fits within the pupils’ SQA Employability Award. Career coach, Eleanor Smith of Skills Development Scotland (SDS) highlighted to employers the service that SDS provide to young people.

At the end of the afternoon, the employers commented generally on the openness of the pupils in terms of their communication skills and eye contact. Naturally, a few students were a little shy, but the workshop provided them with guidance and direction on how to prepare a CV.

The positive feedback from the pupils who took part shows the overall success of this initiative, making students think outside the box and expand on their communication skills but also proved to be an extremely beneficial exercise for the students. Although the surgery focused on CVs, several pupils commented on how the exercise was helpful in terms of preparing for interviews too.

S6 prefects from the school assisted with the running of the surgery to further develop their leadership, organisation and communication skills. They also voiced a request for the CV Surgery to be open to senior pupils in future due to its success.