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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 or located in a social mobility cold spot. For this academic year (2021/2022), we'll be running both a hybrid programme and a virtual programme.

Our hybrid programme includes both face to face and virtual activities. We know in person engagement and office visits are important for the students we're looking to reach. We are also continuing our Virtual Skills Programme, in addition to our hybrid programme, 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 academic year we are building on our fully virtual offering last year to offer a hybrid programme to help reconnect us with students in person.

Our programme consists of two parts, spaced a few weeks apart, to give the students a chance to connect with us, gain skills and receive feedback from our people. The programme will focus on skills for future employment rather than a careers focus, which our Back to Schools tour provides.This programme is exclusively available to schools that meet our social mobility criteria (having above regional average proportions of students eligible for free school meals or being in social mobility coldspots.)

Schools are mainly being recruited through a partner organisation. If you are interested in this programme please email uk_inclusion-community-wellbeing@pwc.com.

New World. New Skills - Virtual Schools Series

This virtual skills programme, aimed at secondary school students, covers topics to help students develop key employability skills such as teamwork and problem solving. The learning materials have been designed for use by teachers and careers leaders in the classroom and include short pre-recorded videos as well as materials to assist with further learning on the topics covered.

There’s also a ‘Dragons’ Den’ version of the programme which encourages students to develop their entrepreneurial skills and deliver a pitch to their teacher and classmates.

All the materials that you need to deliver each programme can be accessed from our New World. New Skills - Virtual Schools Series page, including a detailed teacher handbook.

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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