Middlesex University students will take part in an innovative mentoring programme that will see them get an insight into graduate management schemes from senior public service workers.
Sixty Middlesex students will be mentored by 60 management graduates from the public sector in the Public Sector Mentoring Project, created by Middlesex University and First Division Association (FDA), a professional association that represents the UK’s senior public servants.
The aim of the project is to widen participation and diversity of public sector graduate-entry schemes and increase the employment opportunities of students from modern universities. The scheme will also enhance Middlesex’s working relationships across the public sector, including the Civil Service, NHS, Border Agency and Local Government.
“Middlesex University is the first modern university to work with the FDA and other major stakeholders, like the Civil Service, NHS and Local Government, to develop a public sector mentoring project like this,” said Middlesex’s Julie Haddock-Millar, the project leader of the scheme.
The public servants will mentor Middlesex undergraduate students keen on pursuing a career in the public sector. The students will develop their professional profile and employability attributes relevant to the world of work.
“The mentoring service will give our undergraduate students a better understanding of what skills they need for work, especially if they are considering a career in the public sector,” said Chris Rigby, Business Innovation & Projects Leaders, HRM at Middlesex University.
“The mentors have gone through the public sector management graduate schemes and therefore can advise our students on what to do. These mentors have first hand experience and will share their experiences, which will be of great help to the students,” he added.
Middlesex’s business school will provide training and development to the public sector mentors and the University’s undergraduate students (mentees), enhancing the skills and behaviours required to develop successful mentor/mentee relationships.
To further develop the students’ awareness of the standards required to secure a graduate career in the public sector, Middlesex and the FDA will create mock public sector style assessment centre. Students going for graduate management programmes often go through assessments and interviews before they are hired, and the assessment centre will prepare students for this demanding process.
Co-founder of The European Mentoring and Coaching Council, Professor David Clutterbuck - who was listed as number two in the Sunday Independent’s top 10 UK executive coaches - is advising on the scheme and will be the keynote speaker at the launch event on 27 September in Hendon.