Stewarts has teamed up with Future Frontiers, an education and social mobility charity, for the fourth time, with a group of year 10 students from a local school visiting the office in January and February 2024.

It is an unfortunate reality that 75% of young people from disadvantaged backgrounds do not achieve the required English and Maths GCSE grades to enter most London sixth forms. Future Frontiers exists to address this by providing young people with the guidance, networks and opportunities they need to fulfil their potential at school, in further education and in employment.

To achieve this, Future Frontiers delivers a two-year programme of career coaching and advice comprising three stages:

Stage 1: Students complete six hours of tailored career coaching with a business professional to analyse their career priorities and values and explore a wide range of careers that interest them.

Stage 2: Students produce a personalised action plan with the help of a trained advisor who is an expert in the post-16 landscape. This plan is shared with the student’s support network.

Stage 3: Students receive targeted and personalised support on an ongoing basis to help them stick to their action plan and overcome any hurdles relating to enrolment after GCSEs.


Stewarts’ role

It was the job of volunteers from Stewarts to support Stage 1 of the programme by acting as coaches to the students. After a period of training in which volunteers were taught how to be effective coaches, the students and coaches met weekly for four 90-minute sessions.

In the first three sessions, coaches encouraged students to identify their skills, interests and career values. This information was then used to explore different sectors and careers and find a suitable match for the students. Students learnt not only about the nature of certain jobs and sectors but also career pathways and what would be required of them in the next few years if they wished to progress into these areas.

In the final session, students had the opportunity to speak with a sector role model who worked in the student’s chosen sector. The role models were on hand to answer any questions the students had about the day-to-day nature of working in that field and the steps they had to take to get their jobs. A diverse range of role models took part, from accountants and train drivers to physiotherapists and police officers. This reflected the variety of the students’ ambitions and interests and highlights the need for all students to have an involved and tailored careers service.

The positive impact of the coaching sessions was evident as the programme progressed. All the coaches built a good rapport with their students, who, in turn, appeared to enjoy the sessions and the opportunity to discuss and explore their future education and career goals. At the end of the fourth week, the coaches presented their students with a certificate and said a few departing words of encouragement and support. The students, in turn, presented their coaches with a thank you card.



Stewarts is proud to continue its partnership with Future Frontiers to support young people from disadvantaged backgrounds. The charity is addressing profound issues in the education sector that have been hindering social mobility for a long time. The coaching programme represents a highly worthwhile endeavour, and the firm looks forward to welcoming another cohort of students to the office in 2025.



Zekal Shorish

“Volunteering as a coach for this year’s Future Frontiers mentoring programme was a fantastic experience.

“The programme was engaging and insightful from beginning to end for all those taking part, and I would recommend it to anyone thinking of signing up next year. It offered an invaluable opportunity to learn about the updated career pathways available to young people today. The Future Frontiers team provided excellent guidance and resources to help us navigate the different sessions, which were centred around allowing the students to understand themselves and explore their skills/interests.

“It was especially rewarding to see the students open up and become more comfortable as the weeks progressed, with many of them expressing a lot of gratitude for the experience and sharing all the things they had learnt.”

Victoria Williams

“Future Frontiers is an excellent charity supporting young people to consider academic and career choices that suit them at an early stage. It was a real privilege to be able to take part as a coach this year. Using the helpful framework provided, I was able to support the students in considering and analysing their strengths and interests.

“The students I worked with had identified potential careers of interest early on in the process but did not know what to do next. By the time we had come to the end of the coaching phase of the programme, they had more confidence in their long-term goals and a much clearer idea of what was needed to get them there. It was a positive experience for all involved.”

Francesca Smart

“I have thoroughly enjoyed being a part of this year’s Future Frontiers programme. My student was fully engaged in all sessions, and it was a pleasure to work with her, identify her skills and values, and see her confidence grow. Organising a sector role model interview was one of my highlights, as my student could ask the questions that helped her confirm her chosen career path and give her a much clearer idea of the path to get there. I feel I have gained valuable coaching experience, and I would recommend it to anyone who is considering volunteering.”



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