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Year 12 work experience. Help me find a suitable career for my DS!

(28 Posts)
LynetteScavo Thu 05-Nov-15 20:06:54

He studying Geography, Physics and Maths. He dropped Chemistry because he didn't understand it (Much to my and his teachers surprise.) He has Apsergers but you really, really couldn't tell unless he got very stressed

He has No idea what he wants to do with his life. He did his Y10 work experience in a local bike shop. He was a great hit. They showed him how to build a bike, then asked him to build one. They thought it would take him ages to figure out how. He did it perfectly, very quickly. He has that sort of mind. (If you've seen Forrest Gump, when Forrest puts together the gun, DS is a bit like thatputting together a bike).

He says he's going to the local music store. It's the worlds smallest shop, with only the owner working there. DS thinks it will be fine for one week. I've pointed out he probably wouldn't want to spend the rest of his life in a music shop, and he agrees. He has taught himself guitar, but I can't see him in a music shop for more than a week.

He'd really like to be a meteorologist atm. He's struggling to find work experience related to this despite much Googling. He's very much in to saving the planet and climate change. Any advice at all would be much appreciated!

annandale Thu 05-Nov-15 20:12:00

My main thoughts are that it is fantastic he has sorted out his own work experience, what a star.

Secondly that I don't think work experience is really about careers, it's about experience of the workplace. At a small shop he should get a good range of tasks and I think it's a good call.

As far as careers go, would he consider civil engineering? He sounds like am amazing fit for it (caveat: I'm not a civil engineer.)

annandale Thu 05-Nov-15 20:13:29

Oh I'm really sorry I missed the meteorology bit! He might as well ring university meteorology depts and see if they offer any work experience placements? Local radio weather depts?

thesandwich Thu 05-Nov-15 20:17:03

Wildlife charities etc? Engineering type things seem a good call! The music shop will get hood experience too. Try looking at uni summer courses etrust Sutton etc which might be helpful.

Glitterspy Thu 05-Nov-15 20:18:39

Very long shot but based on the meteorology how about a shipping company like Maersk, or one of the big oil exploration companies (Shell BP et al)?

annandale Thu 05-Nov-15 20:20:46

Are there any national trust places near you? Their volunteer setup is huge these days and they do a lot of lip service work around environmental impact. Friends of the earth have a volunteer programme. Try the local Wildlife Trust for your county, or contact the Parks and Countryside officers at the local council.

Tbh I would focus more on a job or longer term voluntary role with these leads, rather than a week's work experience.

Iwasworried Thu 05-Nov-15 20:22:34

How long does he have to sort something out? If he's got a while then I'd suggest he contacts sciencey charities and museums and so on. Some of the hands-on science places would be a great way to get work experience that relates to his interests. The ones with all the cool interactive displays - or the workshops which make the displays. Are there any museums etc near you that he partic likes? Or you could get him to do some research into what there is near you which might be worth visiting and then applying for work experience?

Zodlebud Thu 05-Nov-15 20:45:29

I did my work experience (albeit many years ago) at the Met Office. I just rang them up and asked them.

LynetteScavo Thu 05-Nov-15 21:02:00

Zodelbud...I think that's what DS really wants, but there is nothing on their webiste atm. I will suggest phoning them. He's rather hesitant that it's in Exeter (200 miles away) but I've told him not to let that put him off; we will sort something out I've no idea what

Did you go on to have a career in meteorology?

Work experience isn't until next June, but they've been told to send out application letters now. Apparently letters must be posted rather than emailed confused

ShotgunNotDoingThePans Thu 05-Nov-15 21:03:29

I think I'd just be impressed, as someone else said, that he's sorted this out for himself. That alone indicates he has the drive and charm to see what he wants and go for it. Having had DD, now y13, spend the week at home 'helping her dad,' having done precisely nothing to avoid this eventuality, I'd have been thrilled if she'd picked up the phone/sent an email/walked in to a business and put herself forward.
He'll probably be a valued member of the team for that week, and will get a boost from feeling useful and being in an environment where he feels comfortable.
That said, by all means try the excellent suggestions mentioned, but I think he'll go far whatever ge does for th work experience week. smile

SecretSquirr3ls Fri 06-Nov-15 15:38:34

There is nothing wrong with working in a shop for a week. Not everyone needs to job shadow a CEO.
DS2 did a week in a major supermarket in Y10 because he left it so late that's all he could get.
You would not believe how useful it has been for other part time job applications. Health and safety training, moving and handling, customer care, cleaning, shelf stacking. Not to mention a good reference.
He has used the experience in two successful job application s.
He is just applying to uni and still hasn't a clue what he wants to do.

Peregrina Fri 06-Nov-15 15:51:35

Do you have an RAF base nearby? They have Met Office outposts on them, although they don't have many staff and as they say here:
careers.metoffice.gov.uk/graduates-and-placements most of the vacancies are in Exeter.

DowntonTabby Fri 06-Nov-15 17:25:28

Second the idea of contacting an RAF base or an airport, RN base/coastguard/RNLI station. Often there are people who have to do Met observations and are not necessarily Met office employees.

As an aside a friend's DD, coincidentally also with mild Aspergers set up her own mini weather station. (Stevenson screen, rain gauge, barometer and anemometer). She did A levels in physics, maths and geog and is now at uni studying geography with the intention of joining the RN as a Met specialist.

Zodlebud Fri 06-Nov-15 18:36:55

I went on to do a biology degree, specialising in genetics and microbiology (at the time I wanted to be a forensic scientist). Then I trained as a chartered accountant, then a project manager and now, after a career break for the kids, I am looking at retraining. I have never known what I want to do as a career, but I have always been happy!!!!!

I did meet a storm chaser once who had worked at the Met Office in Exeter and then moved to the USA.

wotafaff Fri 06-Nov-15 19:09:55

Lynette, it depends where you live. If you're in Exeter, the Met office is an option, but otherwise it's not.

Give us a steer on your location and we'll have more hope of coming up with something.

Geophysics (e.g. oil industry or renewable energy) would be an option with those subjects. Or for a more general business career focus I'd suggest googling local Operational Research options.

wotafaff Fri 06-Nov-15 19:11:45

Or engineering of course. Sounds like he'd be a great candidate for that.

wotafaff Fri 06-Nov-15 19:17:10

Or anywhere that can give him experience of working with a Geographical Information System (GIS) would be useful to a wide range of careers (including meteorology).

nicp123 Sat 07-Nov-15 10:53:06

OP your son sounds to be a great 'candidate' for a Product Design course. If you are in Surrey try and look into a part-time course at Sutton College. I overheard part of a conversation between two boys mentioning the introduction of Product Design part-time or evening courses at Sutton College. Not sure about the starting date. I might be wrong but there must be such courses elsewhere. He will need as much interaction as possible with all sorts of people to help build his 'people skills' so I think the size of the shop he would like for work experience will be ideal for a start. Well done to him for finding it!

Hettywashpot Sat 07-Nov-15 11:16:30

Somebody else recommended civil engineering. That would be a possibility for him. He could approach one or more of the major multi-disciplinary engineering consultancies, who will have a mix of engineering and environment disciplines in most of their offices. This would give him a broad insight into a technical professional environment to help him make decisions.

I am thinking the likes of Arup, Atkins, aecom, Mott McDonald, WSP, etc, or smaller local companies depending on where you are located.

Whatever you do Please don't choose his career for him!

Millymollymama Sat 07-Nov-15 18:14:15

Civil Engineering is usually concerned with working on big projects as part of a team. I think his experience of putting a bike together is more suited to mechanical engineering or product design. There are many courses that might be relevant.

DH has a medium sized Civil/Environmental/Structural Engineering Consultancy and they are always happy to help young people who aporoach them, within reason. However, they do prefer people who actually want that career and show a real enthusiasm. They are too busy to have people who just want something to do for a week.

Lots of the ideas above are good. I think relevant volunteering can be excellent preparation for university but I would start looking at the A level grades required too so that career planning is relevant to his educational standards. Also it is worth considering how many people actually work in meteorology when compared to engineering. It might be way more difficult to get a job in a very specialist field. Also, the oil industry is contracting. Jobs are being lost so not sure if that is a good bet right now.

Talkmeoutofthis222 Sat 07-Nov-15 18:17:33

Just another voice to say please don't get involved.

I don't offer work placements if people's parents call in for them. It sets the wrong tone. (Nurse)

If you're old enough to be in the work place you should be old enough to organise the placement.

Talkmeoutofthis222 Sat 07-Nov-15 18:20:07

Actually - apologies. I just reread your posts and you aren't doing the leg work, just helping with suggestions. Sorry!

TalkinPeas Sat 07-Nov-15 18:57:12

IMHO Year 10 work experience is more about what work environment you fancy rather than an actual career

if he's bright enough to consider Uni, get him to keep his options wide open

work experience : try an office or an instrumentation maker or anything really to give him an idea of the world of work
and then leave it 5 years till he has to make the choice

Millymollymama Sat 07-Nov-15 20:58:32

He is Y12 so university choices are looming. Five years are not available to choose a career if you do want to be an engineer, for example. There might be time if you do a general degree to buy some time but some careers do require appropriate degrees.

Peregrina Sat 07-Nov-15 23:28:20

For meteorology a strong background in maths and physics is normally required (used to work for the Met O, although not in forecasting or climate research). Maths and physics are good for engineering too, so as long as he keeps up with those he should be covered for a few careers.

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