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BPS Birmingham to Stage its’ Third Professional Services Week Bringing Business and Schools Together

BPS Birmingham will be staging its third Professional Services Week between Monday 25th and Friday 29th June.

The initiative aims to raise the aspirations of students currently studying in the region’s schools to consider a career in the Professional Services, the largest and fastest growing sector in the West Midlands. This year more schools and professional firms than ever before have signed up to be a part of the week.

Professional Services Week is sponsored by Deloitte, Wesleyan and the Greater Birmingham Professional Services Academy (part of BMet) and will see over 1000 students from over 20 schools located within Birmingham and the Black Country attend workshops, advice sessions and business walks hosted by 40 professional firms in the city centre and in schools.

Professional Services Week is delivered in partnership with Ahead Partnership, Birmingham Education Partnership and the Careers and Enterprise Company, with support from the West Midlands Combined Authority and Greater Birmingham & Solihull LEP as part of sector skills plans.

Mayor of the West Midlands, Andy Street will be visiting students taking part in a session at Handelsbanken on Friday 29th June.

Professional firms taking part are from all of the key disciplines that make up professional services; legal, property, banking, accountancy, insurance, business advisory and creative and digital.

Professional Services Week was created by BPS Birmingham three years ago as a direct response to research that concluded that the predicted growth within the region’s business and professional services sector would need to inspire young people from within the region’s schools to consider careers in the sector if it was to resource the employment opportunities that will be created.

Commenting on the forthcoming week of activities BPS Birmingham Executive Director Hilary Smyth Allen said;
“It is hard to believe that we are staging our third Professional Services Week. This year the level of interest to take part from both professional firms and schools has been fantastic. With increased focus on addressing productivity and skills challenges in the region’s key sectors, Professional Services Week is an initiative that directly addresses fundamental barriers to the continued growth and this is being recognised more than ever.”

Ian Barnes, a tax partner at Deloitte and chair of BPS Birmingham, said: “The Professional Services sector is thriving, but we need to encourage and retain talent in the region to maintain its on-going success.

“Professional Services Week provides the perfect introduction to the profession, offering students the opportunity to engage directly with professionals in a relaxed setting. As a founding sponsor, Deloitte is fully committed to the initiative and what it sets out to achieve as we have seen the benefits young talent can bring to a business.”

Louise Beards, Early Careers Partner for Wesleyan said: “Wesleyan is firmly committed to developing talent within the region. We’ve been involved in Professional Services Week for a number of years now and have seen first-hand that it gives students a greater understanding of the opportunities available to them as they plan their careers.”

For GBPSA and BMet, the week is vital in raising aspiration; Principal Andrew Cleaves said: “For me, Professional Services Week is about inclusion. It shines a light for young people so they can see and believe that these fantastic careers in business are within their reach. For employers it gives them a glimpse at the emerging talent at their doorstep. BMet is hosting a range of activities throughout the week and we are looking to inspire lots of students and employers, giving them new ways to think about how the sector can get the skilled people it needs and better reflect our diverse region.”

West Midlands Mayor Andy Street who will be making a visit to a session on Friday 29th June said: “Professional Services Week is a fantastic initiative where sector firms reach out to young people in schools. This is a great way for firms to engage and inspire young people, building aspiration and encouraging more of the region’s diverse communities to aspire to a great career in Professional Services.”


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