LCR Connect and its joint venture partners are supporting schools across St Helens, joining its new Enterprise Adviser programme.
St Helens Chamber is collaborating with local schools and colleges in the Liverpool City Region to implement a Careers, Enterprise and Employer Engagement Plan. As part of the initiative, the Chamber is matching volunteers from businesses with educational institutions to provide valuable support and guidance to young people.
Stefani Dupree, HR & Communications Manager at LCR Connect’s joint venture partner NGE, is leading the march on behalf of the City Region’s full fibre network.
An advocate of lifelong learning and the role of apprenticeships, Stefani is working as an enterprise adviser at Rainhill High School in Prescot, an 11-18 mixed comprehensive with 1770 students, including more than 250 in the Sixth Form.
The Enterprise Adviser Programme, developed by the Careers & Enterprise Company, is playing a key role in inspiring and preparing the next generation for the world of work. Through collaboration with Local Enterprise Partnerships, the programme is establishing a nationwide network of Enterprise Advisers. St Helens Chamber is coordinating this effort in the St Helens and Halton area.
As part of her role, Stefani is working directly with the students, offering insights into and helping to prepare them for the ‘world of work’, inspire them, show them there is more than one way to pursue a career, and helping them to understand skills they will need for work.
Stefani’s passion for apprenticeships stems from her own experiences in school. Having struggled and lost confidence – coupled with high-achieving siblings – she couldn’t wait to start her professional life.
However, when Stefani embarked on an apprenticeship at a family-owned optician, working towards an NVQ Level 2 in Business & Administration, she found her true calling. She went on to start her career in London and never looked back.
With a career spanning nearly two decades in the construction industry and while raising a young family along the way, she is currently fulfilling her work life aspirations within NGE over the last 4 years. She is responsible for launching the engineering firm’s apprenticeship scheme in the UK. There are currently 11 apprentices under her guidance – six in Liverpool, two in Norfolk, and three in London.
And it’s Stefani’s own positive experience with apprenticeships has driven her to help others find their own happy place and develop the skills they need to succeed.
She said: “Hands-on experience taught me invaluable skills in customer service, communication, problem-solving, and more – I think, skills that go beyond what is learnt in academia. It really allowed me to gain confidence and blossom in my role.
“I hope that from my involvement as an Enterprise Adviser, I can support the next generation of young people as they transition into the world of work, helping with real-life experience, guidance and support.”
My interest to become an Enterprise Advisor stems from my personal experience with apprenticeships. My passion has filtered into my current workplace to create the apprenticeship scheme across the business. As an enterprise advisor, I am appreciative of the chance I have been given to positively impact students and bridge the gap between education and employment, which is hugely satisfying. I hope that from my involvement as an Enterprise Adviser, I can support the next generation of young people as they transition into the world of work, helping with real-life experience, guidance and support.