Thank you to Lewis Broughton, Operational Support Coordinator for this article:

“The Leigh Academy’s overall principles are very similar to that of John Lewis. Since early May, John Lewis Bluewater has supported the school in trying to find new ways to help support their students.

John Lewis Bluewater offers work experience for the majority of the year and in 2016 they have supported The Leigh Academy by providing placements for their students. The work experience programme offered by John Lewis gives the students the opportunity to work in a fast paced retail environment, allowing students to learn selling skills, work as part of a team and understand how to interact with customers. By the end of the placement the students feel more independent and confident in the workplace and this helps to make them more employable when applying for a job.

John Lewis Bluewater have also supported with the new Mentor Programme that the Academy have set up. The scheme offers the students a chance to be mentored by a Partner (staff member) at John Lewis. Over the course of the programme the students will learn how to write a CV and how to improve their interview skills. They also have the opportunity to complete mock interviews and work experience within the company. It is equally beneficial for the students and mentors, as the Mentor Programme exposes the students to professional advice direct from the industry and it is a rewarding opportunity for the mentor, to help develop someone else and to share their life experiences and knowledge.

The team at John Lewis Bluewater have enjoyed building a relationship with the Academy through Sally Phelps, Work Experience Coordinator  and Louisa Felstead , Business Partnerships Manager, as well as working and supporting the students at The Leigh Academy throughout the year with both the Work Experience and Mentor Programmes”

Thank you at John Lewis Bluewater for your valuable support of Leigh academy students