It all added up for Wimborne sixth formers at a talk about personal development and business as part of their Young Chamber initiative.
The 10-strong group heard how important it was to develop the skills they need for their future careers and invest in themselves in the presentation at the Queen Elizabeth’s School.
Located in Blandford Road, the school was the third to join Dorset Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s Young Chamber Programme to link education and business.
Former teacher Gary Neild of Blue Sky Financial Planning, which has sponsored the school’s membership of the programme, gave the presentation to the Year 12 students.
Sixth former Lauren Froud, 16, said: “The Young Chamber Programme gives us an insight into how business works in real life.
“We are hoping to involve the whole school in various ways so that as many students as possible can see the benefits of the Young Chamber Programme.”
Fellow sixth former Imogen Champion, 16, added: “Our thanks to Gary for coming in and giving a really interesting talk.
“Everyone is excited about the Young Chamber Programme and looking forward to getting involved.”
Some 40 students from Years 11 and 12 have so far been involved in the Young Chamber Programme as part of their business studies.
Head teacher Martin McLeman and business teacher Caroline Kurtulan welcomed Mr Neild, Dorset Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DCCI) chief executive Ian Girling and Young Chamber Programme co-ordinator Will Montgomery to the school.
Mr McLeman said: “Young Chamber is absolutely essential for Young People.
“They need to gain knowledge and an understanding of wider business and the realities of the world we live in.
“Gary has been terrific. We are extremely grateful for his sponsorship of the school’s Young Chamber Programme and look forward further developing a valuable relationship.”
Gary was a geography teacher before founding Poole-based Blue Sky Financial Planning.
He said: “The best investment young people can make is in themselves and to follow their passion.
“This could be in upskilling, personal development or thinking about how they will meet the needs of future employers.
“I would encourage young people to explore beyond their comfort zones as I believe that is when you learn most about yourself and make the most progress.
“I’m looking forward to developing my relationship with the Young Chamber with the aim of making a difference.”
Gary added: “From my role as a financial planner I have seen, over the years, how ill-informed people are about financial matters.
“This knowledge gap unfortunately creates difficulties on many levels and it means that sometimes, in adult life, people aren’t making the most of opportunities.
“My passion is to get young people to be the best that they can be by empowering them to have confidence in their future self.
DCCI – the voice of business in Dorset – launched the Young Chamber programme in September at Lytchett Minster School.
Blue Sky Financial Planning offers comprehensive financial planning, including investments, pensions, tax planning, protection and insurance and inheritance.
The QE School is a Church of England secondary school with about 1,600 students aged 11 to 19, including 400 in the sixth form.
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