As Swindon Academy prepares its Year 11 for further education, Launch Your Career helped The Careers Lady, Jessica Cook, deliver a special VR career workshop at the school. After a fun session, 46 pupils went home feeling assured and focused about the future.Posted Jul 26, 2021
VR Can Help Students Make Positive Future Decisions
The last 18 months have been frenzied for students. Amid school closures and exam frights, and being trapped at home, it’s no wonder 78% of learners feel uncertain or fearful of their future. For some, the outlook is not looking bright due to sector slumps, causing students to change direction or leaving many unsure about what careers are suitable for them.
To aggravate the crisis, the UK economy is set to nosedive, with unemployment levels spiking to a projected 2.2 million. That may not sound much compared to population totals, but 6.5% of workers out of work isn't a positive sign for a new generation of workers coming through.
Emma Gaukroger, a careers leader representing Greenwood Academy - a secondary school in Birmingham with a mighty 888 learners - thinks VR is the key to activating optimistic students.
An approach that appeals to everyone
For young people to think positively about the future, tackling their career fear is imperative. Learners need to know that their decisions really matter and that the fluctuating landscape is navigable. Moreover, they need to know they are going to bounce back after the pandemic.
In our Careers After Covid study, we found that 70% of learners are unsure of which direction to head in due to the changing landscape and shifting goalposts. In addition, a fifth of learners admit to receiving no advice in lockdown. Therefore, it’s necessary to re-engage these youngsters and prepare them for the workforce.
After a recent virtual pilot with Launch Your Career at Greenwood Academy, Emma is certain a fresh approach to careers guidance and discovery is a must. Not only to empower young people and raise how schools assist them, but also for the betterment of economic recovery.
She explores the appeal and personalisation VR can bring. An approach that doesn't just cater to a portion of students but a wider audience. For example, when a school invites an engineer to speak with learners, that engineer isn't going to interest someone with plans to be a fashion designer, doctor, or policeperson. The visit isn't personalised to an individual in the way VR can be. VR has the power to engage and give learners what they need to succeed.
Immersed in virtual careers discovery
Virtual reality is a game-changer for young people. Using VR headsets to explore careers in a 360° dimension, watch employer videos, or dive into labour market info, opens their eyes to the world of work in fun ways. Additionally, technology helps make the experience relatable.
After all, Gen Z is digitally native. In fact, 68% of Gen Z say they would embrace the idea of AI and other tech in the workplace. If that is the case, why not introduce it to them earlier? Get on their level and unlock their ambitions utilising the latest VR innovations on the market.
At the very least, we can begin to chip away at their career fears, reignite their passion for the future, and help them to make decisions that matter in today’s unstable climate in a fun way.
Read Emma’s thoughts about how VR can help students make career decisions by clicking the following link: How can VR help students make career decisions?
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