St Brendan’s College is an affiliated member of the Career Academies UK programme.

Career Academies UK helps raise young people’s aspirations and bridge the gap between education and work by giving them access to real experience of the world of  work. Over 85% of Career Academy students progress to university or directly into employment or work based learning such as apprenticeships or school leaver programmes.

The four main parts of a Career Academy programme are:

  1. Guru lectures – employers from a variety of organisations are invited to St Brendan’s to talk to Career Academy students about different aspects of the subject they are studying or to help them gain useful skills such as interview techniques and presentation skills.
  2. Workplace visits – Career Academy students are given the opportunity to visit different organisations.
  3. Internships  –  Career Academy students are given an internship for up to six weeks between their first and second year at St Brendan’s College. This is a carefully designed programme to help students gain beneficial work experience.
  4. Partner  in  business  –  Career Academy students  are allocated a Partner in Business who will help and support them in their studies at St Brendan’s and help to prepare them for the next stage whether that be university or work. 
St Brendan's Students

St Brendan's Students

Who is eligible?

We currently offer three Career Academy programmes:

  1. St Brendan’s Business Academy – any student enrolling on a Level 3 Business course is eligible to apply.
  2. St Brendan’s Sport and Leisure Academy – any student enrolling on a Level 3 Sport course is eligible to apply.
  3. St Brendan’s Performing Arts and Media Academy - any student enrolling on a Level 3 Performing Arts and Media course is eligible to apply.

How are students selected for this programme?

Students who are interested in applying will be invited, along with their parents/carer to a Career Academy information evening in September of their first year. Full details will be given about the programme and current Academy students will talk about  their experiences so far. There will be opportunities to ask lots of questions. Application forms will be distributed during this evening which students will need to submit by a deadline. Interviews will then be held with a Career Academy Coordinator from St Brendan’s and a local employer to choose the most suitable candidates.

How do I get more information on the

Career Academy programme?

Career Academies UK have a useful website at: or telephone St Brendan's (01179 777766) and ask for:

  • Louise Charles – for St Brendan’s Business Academy: 
  • Vicki Haigh – for St Brendan’s Sport and Leisure Career Academy:
  • Emily Field - for St Brendan's Performing Arts and Media Career Academy:

You can view a student created website about the careers academy by clicking here.

Bristol Hippodrome

Bristol Hippodrome

Performing Arts Careers Acadamy Trips and Activities

Bristol Hippodrome

By Sophie Woolcomb

My favourite trip with the Academy was a tour around Bristol Hippodrome. It was exciting to see the building from the performer's perspective and to see all of the work that happens backstage. We got to see things such as the rafters, the onstage changing rooms (which fascinated me because I didn't know they existed) and the musician's pit. We also learnt about the history of the building, which transferred itself to my studies. My favourite part of the trip was being on the stage and looking out to the seats because it was interesting to see how much smaller the room seemed onstage.

BBC Trip

BBC Trip


By Taynee Lord

On our Performing Arts and Media Careers Academy trip, we visited the BBC Broadcasting House in London. We started the day by viewing the BBC news area; the second largest news room in the world.

We then had a tour of the old and new buildings, learning about the history behind the BBC and the role it played in the war. During the trip, we were lucky enough to be taken to the set of The One Show and watched a virtual tour of Radio 1.

We were also shown how green screens work during the news and weather forecasts and some of us got to try out using a green screen and an autocue which was a fantastic experience! The trip was extremely interesting; giving us great insight into the BBC and life in the media industry. 

Aardman Studios

Aardman Studios

Aardman Studios

By Rasheed Bello

The Performing Arts and Media Career Academy had the opportunity to visit the Aardman Studios, in Aztec West. It was an incredible trip as we were given a tour of where the script writers and editors' work on Shaun the Sheep, and they showed us the sophisticated set designs. We learnt that it can take weeks to make such short episodes and the editors, puppet designers often work long hours to ensure they meet tight deadlines. I really enjoyed the trip as I had never imagined before that a career was possible, nor thought about the amount of work put into animation television series. I feel this trip was a great success as it provided me and others with knowledge of the animation industry that we didn't know were opportunities we could pursue.