Work to connect students with city employers and promote the career opportunities there are in Leicester has been given a regional business award.
BrightER Futures is a partnership between ER Recruitment and De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) which pairs 20 students with 20 different companies to show the opportunities on offer here in the city.
This month it was named winner of the Excellence in Collaboration category at the Leicestershire Business Awards, which celebrated the best achievements in the business community over the past 12 months.
Zul Muhammad, regional skills and marketing officer with DMU’s careers team, has been part of the programme since its launch, working with ER’s business and marketing manager, Scarlett Tinsley.
He said: “The BrightER Futures is a great programme for students to get an insight into the careers and opportunities available in Leicester.
“It also allows employers to meet a diverse range of talented students which helps the employers with their recruitment needs. Having led the project for the last two years it feels amazing to win this award. The BrightER Futures definitely does have a positive impact on both the students and employers.”
BrightER Futures was a spin-off project from Leicester’s Future Leaders, which supported Black and ethnic minority students at DMU into graduate work. Realising that many students did not realise the opportunities which existed in Leicester, Eileen Richards and the team at DMU Works put together a programme with city businesses to offer them short work placements.
The students also have sessions to develop commercial awareness, employability skills and business acumen.
The companies who took part this year were: McIntyre Hudson, ER Recruitment, Happy Pet, Menphys, East Midlands Chamber, Cross Productions, RSM, Kazzoo IT, Michael Smith Switchgear, Momentum, Pick Everard, Breedon Consulting, Paradigm Wills, Corporate Architecture, Fraser Stretton, Brewin Dolphin and Furnley House.
Scarlett said: “This brilliant accolade is a testament to our students who have been part of the programme so far, the businesses and guest speakers who support the programme and finally the fantastic team who work hard to support the students and make a positive differencce. Very proud of this programme and winning the award! It is a pleasure working alongside Zul and the students to connect talented individuals to leading SME's with the mission to retain top talent in Leicester.”
DMU was nominated twice in the same category, for BrightER Futures and for the work between company Micro-Fresh ™. Professor Katie Laird and Dr Maitreyi Shivkumar worked with CEO Byron Dixon to test how the Covid-19 virus behaved on shoe leather. Their work was able to help shoe manufacturers plan and improve worker safety.
Chamber chief executive Scott Knowles said: “The past few years have been challenging for our business community, and yet we continue to see so many shining examples of business success across our region.
“It’s always important to celebrate these achievements and shout about the great things happening right here in Leicestershire.
“We know it is a fantastic place to do business and these organisations – many of which have worked together to maximise their impact within their sectors and communities – are doing a wonderful job.”
Posted on Friday 18th November 2022