Almost 200 young people and their parents or carers got the chance to hear about the growth sectors and jobs of the future in the Aberdeen city region when this year’s Big Parents’ Evening got underway.

Organised by Developing the Young Workforce North East, the event at The Millenium Copthorne focused on the changing sectors in the area and the key skills young people will need to embark on a successful career in them.

Run as part of the lead up to Scottish Apprenticeship Week, attendees got to hear about the value apprenticeships can bring to both students and employers, with presentations from foundation, modern and graduate apprentices who shared their stories.

Yasmin Taylor, an S6 pupil at Aboyne Academy is a creative and digital media foundation apprentice with NESCol. She said: “I’ve loved the opportunity to see how the creative industries work together and to get into the workplace and get practical experience has been amazing. The skills are so hands-on so when you are interacting with people you are learning things you would never learn in the classroom.

Social services and childcare modern apprentice Josh Digby, who is completing his placement with Aberlour Child Care Trust, added: “I would encourage more employers to offer apprenticeships. They get someone who is willing to put in the hard work, is grateful for the opportunity and the experience and will strive to do the best that they can. I’ve really enjoyed my apprenticeship and feel it has put me on the right path for my future career.”

Around 15 local businesses and training providers were at the event, many representing the region’s key growth sectors of life sciences; tourism; food, drink and agriculture; digital and entrepreneurship. Jared Owen, director of digital and entrepreneurship at Opportunity North East, also shared his insights about how social intelligence, innovation and self-management skills will be more in demand within the next decade.

DYW North East bridges the gap between education and employers to help all young people find fulfilling careers. Director Mary Holland said: “The 2020 Big Parents’ Evening was a fantastic night with outstanding presentations from each of the apprentices which really brought to life the multitude of benefits and opportunities an apprenticeship can offer.

“We are delighted to have had such strong representation from local education providers at the event and hope that young people, as well as their parents or other influencers, found it a valuable source of information and inspiration about the jobs of the future and the many rewarding career pathways that are open to them.”