A lesson in emergencies

Students at the careers day
Students at the careers day

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Students learnt valuable lessons from the full spectrum of emergency and armed services during a hands-on career day.

The Year 10 youngsters at Charter Academy were in safe hands when they took part in several workshops run by members of the Army, the Royal Navy, the RAF, Hampshire Constabulary, Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service, St John Ambulance and Portsmouth City Council’s road safety team.

Brian Richardson, lead instructor for Portsmouth Military Preparation College in Hilsea, took charge of some of the activities.

He said: ‘We have always worked very closely with schools in the area, so welcomed the chance for a visit.

‘We often have Year 10 and 11 students join us once or twice a week. They join in with the 16 to 19-year-olds who are doing our 24-week course which teaches skills needed to pass the armed services selection process.’

During the day, Brian ran a number of activities illustrating the importance of trust and teamwork.

‘Half of what we teach is physical fitness, but the other half is life skills such as interview technique, public speaking, communication and teamwork,’ he said.

‘The young people learn to appreciate strengths and weaknesses within themselves and each other in order to work together and meet challenges put to them.’

Wendy Brombley, Year 10 learning manager at the academy in Somers Town, said: ‘This sort of event is a fantastic opportunity for our students to think about the future and appreciate how the skills they are learning in school can be applied to the world outside it.

‘Learning in this way encourages confidence and maturity and often brings out the best in our young people.’

Fran Wright, co-ordinator for the Portsmouth and South East Hampshire Education Business Partnership, said: ‘The emergency and armed services are always willing to take up opportunities to engage with the younger generation.

‘The police and St John Ambulance brought their vehicles and equipment which always makes a lasting impression on their audience.’