On 21st March, 14 Year 5-6 pupils (aged 9-11) from Summerfield Primary school visited Network Rail’s national centre for a one-hour Career WorkOut session in ‘the street’ of Quadrant:mk.
In the session they met and interviewed in pairs eight Network Rail staff, representing a wide range of jobs and backgrounds, in a carousel of six-minute conversations.
“I think the children enjoyed it, given how many of them put their hand up at the end when I asked how many of them wanted to work for Network Rail one day!” said Russ Freeman, Fleet Engineer (Route Services) (pictured above).
“The really nice thing is how enthusiastic the children are. It feels you’re actually taking part in the community,” said Chris Parker, Data Assistant.
“They’re really engaging,” said Charlotte Lutz, Executive Assistant. “They think about the answers I give them, then ask follow up questions. I’m proud to be able to share the journey I’ve had and what it feels like to work at Network Rail. It’s not as scary as it sounds. I hate public speaking but it’s not public speaking!”
“Spending time with them means they have something to aspire to,” said Rhian Chandhar, Professional Development & Customer Consultant. “They’re very inquisitive…really got me thinking, like what’s the biggest challenge I’ve faced in my career to date. I love that Network Rail gives us five whole days to volunteer for things like this.”
“It’s so straightforward,” said Abdul-Wadud Ahmed, Category Manager (Route Services). “You just need to be yourself.”
Nikki Elgar, Teaching Assistant at Summerfield School, said: “The children loved the experience and I believe such events are invaluable when it comes to their development. Such meetings enable the children to grow in confidence and become less apprehensive when talking to adults. Each time they experience these interactions, their belief in themselves grows, which will help them in adolescence and adulthood. Hopefully, there will be some future employees of Network Rail among the group and this opportunity gives them an insight into the working world and the possibilities for their futures.”
If you can give an hour to being interviewed by MK young people, please sign up here: www.worktree2.prominenthosting.com/events.