Careers Newsletter: September 2022
Welcome back to the new school year!
For those of you who are new to Hertswood, we publish a careers newsletter each month. The newsletter will provide you with details of work experience opportunities that are available, highlight careers you may not have considered and provide information about industries in Hertfordshire to help you start to make those important decisions about the future.
Hertswood Careers Team
Careers Spotlight: Air Traffic Controller
Each year, around 2.5 million flights and 250 million people fly above our heads in UK skies. Our Air Traffic Controllers work with pilots to make that happen quickly, efficiently and, most importantly, safely.
The UK, like many countries, has ‘controlled’ and ‘uncontrolled’ airspace. In controlled airspace, pilots take instructions from Air Traffic Controllers on where, when and how to position their aircraft. Most commercial aircraft operate in controlled airspace.
There are different types of Controllers, with different skill sets and responsibilities based on their roles.
Typically based in a Control Tower at an airport, an Aerodrome Controller (sometimes referred to as a 'Tower Controller') is responsible for the safety and movement of aircraft around an airfield. They issue clearances to take off and land and route aircraft around the airfield so they can taxi safely between runways, stands and other areas they need to travel to.
Typically based at Control Centres (such as those at Prestwick and Swanwick in the UK), Area Controllers manage aircraft at higher altitudes (often five thousand feet and above). They are responsible for aircraft in the climb, descent and en-route phase of the flight. Area Controllers issue levels, headings and speeds to separate aircraft, providing a safe and expeditious routing through the sector of airspace that they manage.
Approach Controllers are typically based at airports, but those managing the big London airports are based at Swanwick. They manage aircraft approaching an airport putting them into the most efficient sequence to land. They also manage those that have just departed the airport in their initial phases of flight. Approach Controllers may also manage flights transiting the airspace around the airport.
Being a successful Controller isn’t so much about your previous work experience, it’s about the way you approach problems, handle pressure and adapt to changing situations.
NATS have developed a series of mini-games to help you decide whether it’s the kind of thing that might be right for you. They test a range of basic mental skills required by Controllers. Click on the link below to give them a go!
Boosting your CV
So what is a CV? CV is short for Curriculum Vitae and is a short document which summarises your unique skills, character, experience and achievements.
For students it can feel difficult to know what to write as you haven't had the time to build up the experience that employers always seem to want.
In this section we will look at ways of making your CV stand out for future employers so you can get that dream job and in an ever more competitive job market it is never too soon to start thinking about shaping your CV.
Get involved in extra-curricular activities:
You might not be aware of it, but we have a large number of activities that you can take part in that will help you gain valuable experience. Some of the best activities to consider signing up for include:
Sports clubs (shows you’re a team player).
Other clubs such as model making club or art club (shows you want to develop your skills and are happy to put in the extra effort)
School Council (shows that you have passion).
Above all, what these activities show is that you have initiative. Most employers are aware that young people find it difficult to get their first break and will appreciate the effort you’ve taken to gain as much work experience as you can.
Careers in Hertfordshire: Life Sciences
The 'Golden Triangle', made up of Oxford, Cambridge and London, marks the central cluster of the UK’s life sciences industry, at the heart of which lies Hertfordshire. Within the triangle are four of the world’s top 10 universities for medical and scientific research: Cambridge, Oxford, Imperial College London and University College London.
UK researchers and institutions have been credited with major scientific breakthroughs including the discovery of penicillin and the structure of DNA, advancements in neuroscience and medical imaging, and developments in stem cell research and in-vitro fertilisation. Businesses benefit from the opportunity to tap into this pool of talent and research expertise.
Britain’s life sciences industry has a track record for excellence and is supported by a tax structure that rewards innovation. More than 5,600 life sciences companies operate in the UK, with a turnover of over £60 billion and exports that exceed £30 billion. These companies span product development, supply and associated services, and employ more than 220,000 people.
The sector is supported by a skilled workforce. In 2016, a total of 38,800 science, research, engineering and technology professionals worked in Hertfordshire – 50% above the national average, with an additional 10,300 people working as science, engineering and technology associate professionals.
There are 2,800 people working in pharmaceuticals and the industry is 4.1 times more important as a local employer than the national average. More people work in pharmaceuticals manufacturing in Hertfordshire than in any other Local Enterprise Partnership area in England. The total number of pharmaceuticals manufacturing jobs is 75% higher than in Greater Cambridgeshire, Greater Peterborough and the Oxfordshire areas combined.
Life sciences employed 13,200 people in Hertfordshire in 2015. There were 330 enterprises in pharmaceutical and life sciences research in 2016. While the sector is dominated by large enterprises, there has been a remarkable growth in the business population, which has risen by 4.1% annually since 2010.