Careers Newsletter: September 2023

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

Highlights of last year

Last year we had a very active and successful year with careers activities:

Autumn Term:

Spring Term:

Summer Term

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.

Aerodrome Controllers:

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.  

Area Controllers:

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:

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:

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.

For more information please go to 

Current Opportunities

We have opportunities to join Get into Into Medicine Conferences throughout this half term.  Also the Careers and Enterprise Company are starting their webinar series again, the first webinars will be on set and prop design and careers as a personal trainer

Get into Medicine Conferences

For aspiring Doctors: FREE LIVE VIRTUAL Get Into Medicine conference dates:

Students and parents can register for free at this link:

All aspiring doctors in years 10-12 / S3-S5 / NI11-13 are invited to register.

These conferences offer tailored advice for medicine and dentistry, covering a range of crucial topics:

- Tactically choosing universities

- Personal statements


- Medical & Dental school interview skills

- Medical Leadership Programmes

- Awards Programmes

- Extracurricular activities

- Work experience

- Building a CV

- Applying for scholarships

We encourage both students and parents to participate in these invaluable sessions.

Spaces are competitive and limited, so students should register as soon as they can using the link below. For this reason, we kindly request that students only book one conference.

Registration Link:

Here’s how the day will run:

9:30-10.00 Registration

10.00-11:00 Quick introduction to Medic Mentor, overview of the day, competition ratios, application timeline, Awards and Scholarships

11:00-11:15 Break

11.15-11.45 Introduction to the UCAS application form and entry requirements

11.45-12.15 Interactive CV building exercise and exclusive access to leadership, research, presentation, publication, prizes and scholarship opportunities

12.15-12.30 Top tips form a successful applicant (medical student)

12:30-12:45 Break

12.45-13.30 How to write the perfect personal statement

13.30-13.45 Break

13.45-14.10 Entrance exams - how to do ace the UCAT

14.10-14.30 How to prepare for Medical School interviews

14.30-15.00 Top tips form a successful applicant (medical student) and next steps

Our doctors and medical students look forward to welcoming your students at the conferences.

If you have any questions at all, please feel free to drop me an email. Your students can also ring us for advice or drop our dedicated student admissions team a contact form here:

HoP Webinar Series

Our HOP Webinar series will resume on 5th October with a focus on Careers in Set and Prop Design. This is particularly relevant in Hertfordshire owing to our booming Film, TV and Creative Sector that will see more stages in the county than in Hollywood by the end of the decade.


On this webinar students can hear directly from and interact with a Prop Storeman, an Assistant Art Director and hear from a tutor from University of Hertfordshire’s creative school.


Registrations are now live on HOP and can be found here…..


The following webinar will be on Careers as a Personal Trainer (12th Oct)