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News article

31st January 2023

At St Brendan’s the opportunities to grow, develop and advance are endless including access to a whole host of work experience placements, workshops and visits by a range of individuals from different industries. We love to hear from our students to find out what they found most valuable from each opportunity. 

We recently caught up with Daisy, a Year 13 student who is revising for her exams in A-Level History and Sociology, whilst completing a diploma in Criminology. Daisy is also an active member of our Student Union as the Equality, Diversity and Interfaith Officer. 

Daisy has enrolled in the Social Mobility Business Partnership programme (SMBP). A volunteer-led charity, SMBP is a collaboration of 170 commercial organisations, professional services firms and professional sports teams working in towns and cities across the UK. All are committed to supporting students from low-income backgrounds in their pursuit of a business career. 

Daisy got to spend a week networking with industry experts and students from around the South West area. She told us about some of the amazing things she learnt throughout the week which included valuable “How to” skills on:

  • Negotiation 
  • Presentation
  • Conducting yourself in an interview
  • Writing an exemplary CV

Daisy said her favourite part of the experience was when the group visited Osborne Clarke to meet ITV lawyers who helped the group to understand entertainment law, along with meeting solicitor apprentices to find out about the ins and outs of their apprenticeship programme. 

The group of students visited several different organisations such as BT, EE and Yeo Valley, Daisy mentions each day was extremely valuable, especially the seminars that were led by industry leaders. Daisy and her group led presentations and conducted interviews with various roles in each organisation from lawyers to engineers to fully understand what they valued in applicants. She feels that it taught the group to be more attentive and how to work together more effectively.


Daisy, what did you gain from this programme?

“I gained knowledge on about how to act in an interview, how employers also consider body language and speech, your personality and your confidence as well as your experience and education. To be very honest, I completely humiliated myself in my first practice interview. I didn’t know how to respond and how to act but after a lot of practice, I got better and eventually I could deliver a presentation without stuttering or having to stop. It was also a week that required me to get out of my comfort zone, to be able to lead teams and be able to negotiate without faltering. It was also helpful to build my network as well as learn what the interviewer is analysing and what I should do.”

How can other students make the most of this programme? 

“Questions, ask a lot of questions! Be the annoying person who raises their hand all the time. It won’t be annoying and it’s better than remaining quiet in a room full of quiet people.

If they give you a chance to lead, take it. You have to stand out from the professionals!

Dress appropriately for each day, do not do what I did and wear oxford shoes to Yeo Valley where you had to step in mud.

Make friends with other people on the programme, you’re not competing, it’s about working collectively. Also take notes, it’ll help a lot, in presentations especially.” 


And finally, Daisy what are your next steps in the programme? 

“I am currently an SMBP Ambassador, I applied after completing my programme and I was successful in securing a place as an Ambassador! I’m one of the 3 Ambassadors in the South West area and the only one from Bristol. I will hold this position until May and then I will hopefully become part of the SMBP Alumni Board. This board consists of legal apprentices and university students.” 

We are so proud of Daisy for stepping out of her comfort zone, enrolling for the programme and for taking full advantage of the resources that were given to her. We wish her great success in her new role as an ambassador as she continues to inspire other students to do the same. Now that we have an SMBP Ambassador on site, our careers team are looking forward to working with the programme leaders and Daisy for opportunities for other St Brendan’s students to get involved in!