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Social mobility community programme

Supporting our communities

We recognise that boosting social mobility isn’t just about our own internal business practices, but how we support our local communities too. As part of our social mobility community programme, we work with disadvantaged school students, undergraduates and other social mobility beneficiary groups (such as refugees and our PwC Social Entrepreneurs Club members) to:

  • equip them with the skills to help them fulfil their potential and achieve positive employment outcomes in their career of choice, whether at PwC or elsewhere;
  • remove barriers to access, linking our outreach programme to our recruitment opportunities;
  • reach the most disadvantaged areas and groups according to national data, including local authority cold spots; and
  • share our people's expertise through volunteering opportunities.

Our social mobility network

Our social mobility network brings together a community of like-minded individuals, from around the firm, who are passionate about social mobility. They help to organise and coordinate our work in this area - driving activities in their local regions and business units and sourcing volunteers to help deliver the programmes, as well as taking part themselves.

How we support students

Schools

Our Social Mobility Schools programme offers secondary school students an opportunity to develop their confidence and key employability skills. The programme is aimed at secondary schools across the UK with a higher than average proportion of students eligible for free school meals. For this academic year (2020/2021), we'll be running a fully virtual programme. 

We plan to restart face-to-face activity as soon as we’re able to, as we believe this type of engagement is important for the students we're looking to reach. We also intend to continue our Virtual Skills Programme, in addition to face-to-face events, so that we’re  able to engage with students in hard-to-reach areas that are far from offices (for example, in local authority cold spots).

Activities

This year, we’re offering the following activities to schools and students. All of our sessions are mapped against the Gatsby benchmarks.

New World. New Skills - Schools series

This virtual skills programme, aimed at secondary school students, runs over a period of six weeks, focusing on a different employability skill each week. Covering topics such as teamwork and problem solving, learning materials are released online each week. These include a 20-30 minute pre-recorded video delivered by PwC volunteers and optional challenges for students which can be submitted to us for feedback. 

Our autumn 2020 and spring 2021 programmes are now both complete, with the learning materials available online for you to use with students.

Summer 2021 - Dragons’ Den

For the summer term, we’re running a Dragons’ Den version of the programme for students in Years 7-9 in England and Wales, Years 8-10 in Northern Ireland and S1-3 in Scotland. This is an opportunity for students to act as entrepreneurs and develop key employability skills.

The programme is now live and all learning materials are available online. These include a series of bite size (5-10 minute) pre-recorded videos delivered by PwC volunteers along with tasks to complete in the classroom. Guidance for teachers is also provided.

Virtual Back to Schools

These live sessions, held on Google Meet, offer students an insight into the world of business and raise awareness of the different entry routes into PwC. Lasting approximately 45 minutes, they’re aimed at students in Years 10-13 in England and Wales, Years 11-14 in Northern Ireland and S4-6 in Scotland. 

The dates for our next set of sessions will be confirmed here later in the year. Teachers or careers leaders will have the flexibility to sign up for a morning or afternoon slot and to request a time that suits their timetable. Please note, these sessions are only available for delivery into a classroom with a teacher/member of school staff present. If you have any questions, please get in touch using this form.

Employability Skills Toolkit

Our online toolkit has been created for teachers and careers professionals to support their students with developing key skills in preparation for their careers, whether at PwC or elsewhere. It contains a wide selection of lessons, suitable for students aged 13-18, that can be easily accessed online. Topics include technology, financial literacy and wellbeing as well as access to resources such as our Employability Hub. All sessions have easy-to-follow lesson plans, presentations and engaging activities. 

 

Undergraduates

Our work with disadvantaged undergraduates includes mentoring, work inspiration days, campus events and activities, skills-based workshops and our own social mobility programme for undergraduates, PwC Aspire. We work with upReach and Aspiring Solicitors hosting a number of insight days and careers events across our offices.

How we support social enterprises, refugees, and survivors of modern day slavery

We’re a significant supporter of social enterprises which often operate in deprived areas, employing a high proportion of under-represented groups. Our PwC Social Entrepreneurs Club provides mentoring, training and developmental support to 250 social enterprises across the UK, including more than 40 in our supply chain. We also have our own social enterprise, Brigade, which supports those who are homeless, or at risk of homelessness, into a career in the catering industry.

We’re committed to supporting refugees and survivors of modern day slavery, as they rebuild their lives in the UK. Through our social mobility community programme, we work with partner organisations such as refugee charities and local councils to deliver employability skills programmes. These are designed to equip participants with key skills, insight and boost their confidence through activities such as professional communication courses and interview workshops.

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Contact us

Hollie Crompton

Social Mobility Lead, PwC United Kingdom

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