A new digital online portal providing a wealth of support to young people as they pursue their future careers ambitions, has been agreed by Leeds City Council.

Designed and developed by Leeds based U-Explore Limited, the Careers Information, Advice and Guidance (IAG) platform will offer all young people moving through high school education and into work, the opportunity to access through their computer, phone and tablet, the best and most up to-date information to inform their future study and career choices. With interactive e-learning activities, available for use in schools and at home, the platform sets out to inspire young people as to the full range of career opportunities in and around the city and helping them to improve their chances of securing high-skilled employment.

To ensure that as many young people as possible have the chance to use the platform, a range of support will be made available to schools to implement with their students, as well as an opportunity for local employers to get involved and contribute to video content to bring jobs and opportunities alive.

Leeds City Council is committed to ensuring that all young people and their families are better informed about the jobs, careers and opportunities available to them and the pathways. This new platform will play a key role in this work, and provide a crucial pathway to support young people’s transition from learning to earning.

It is expected that developments on the Leeds portal, which will build on the existing platform startprofile.com, will begin going live this summer.

Councillor Jonathan Pryor, Leeds City Council’s executive member for learning, skills and employment said:

“This is an exciting time for young people and their future career prospects in Leeds. Through our city’s Young Person’s IAG charter, we have set out a clear commitment to ensure that the best possible technology and support are made available to support our young people’s career goals and aspirations.

“I am delighted therefore that working in partnership with Leeds based U-Explore Limited, we are now moving forward on the development of a new IAG online service. This is an important strategic step within the wider context of our city’s inclusive economic growth strategy, which is supporting billions of pounds of inward investment, regeneration and business growth to Leeds.

“Not only will all young people be able to access a wealth of information and new e-learning activities, including the creation of a digital portfolio, to develop and build their own career aspirations, schools, the council and wider stakeholders will also be able to access and use a wealth of data which will be created through the new platform. This information will be crucial in ensuring that we are tailoring the support which is available to each individual young person in the best possible way, and also be a key component in guiding and influencing our wider IAG strategy moving forward.”

Andy Pickles, founder, U-Explore Limited, said:

“I believe this is an incredibly exciting and important partnership we are entering into with Leeds City Council. It will be not only empower, inspire and better inform young people about the opportunities available to them in the Leeds economy and the range of education pathways available, but also provide much needed digital connectivity between the city’s schools, colleges, universities and employers.

“This is a city with so much to offer and a business community ready and willing to play their part in inspiring and supporting young people, as they transition from education to employment. However, what was missing was the mechanism to enable this to happen more effectively and most importantly in a way that allows us to track and support the aspirations of our young people.

“Through Leeds City Council’s vision and investment, combined with U-Explore’s existing Start technology, already used by many schools and colleges across the city, we are now in a position to drive the change needed that ensures every young person and their family gets the careers information and support they need to plan a successful future.”

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