Break the Bias – supporting girls with essential skills

Written by Kessa Amoo, Project Manager, Education Works

As the world celebrated women on March 8th, the Education team at ELBA also focussed on the global movement that has shaped society by supporting female students with their interview skills. The theme for International Women’s Day this year is #BreakTheBias, which pushes for inclusivity and freedom from bias surrounding women in order to ensure that the playing field is levelled for women of the future.

ELBA’s Education team have sought to ensure that the playing field is levelled for various underrepresented groups, however for International Women’s Day we supported Sarah Bonnell School, Stratford to deliver prefect interviews to their entire year group of female students. This includes interviewing the students and allowing them to demonstrate their interview skills to corporate volunteers, as well as receiving invaluable feedback on their interview techniques, which they could use as reflections when preparing for interviews in the future. This is an integral part of the school’s celebration of International Women’s Day, as it provides a supportive environment and opportunity for the girls to apply for a leadership role within their school. The whole year group is encouraged to apply and take part in the interviews to ensure all the girls are challenging themselves and giving themselves opportunities that may boost their employability in the future.

Mock Interviews have a plethora of benefits for the students, which include:

  • Helping students to boost their confidence and reduce anxiety about interviewing
  • Obtaining constructive feedback in a natural, low-pressure environment
  • Improving speaking and listening skills, as well as preparing students for answering unexpected questions
  • Preparation for behavioural and skills-based interview questions, giving students an advantage when participating in real interviews

In all, 101 students were interviewed throughout the course of the day and 33 volunteers participated from Morgan Stanley, KPMG, HSBC, Standard Chartered, T.Rowe Price and Citi Private Bank.

Joe Begley,  Assistant Headteacher at Sarah Bonnell School said:

“Last week was great, so please let me echo your thanks again. It was brilliant to be able to do it back in person, and I know that the students really appreciated it.”

Volunteer feedback also included:

“I would like to commend you and the school for the day running very smoothly. The school and the two young ladies I had the privilege of interviewing should be proud of themselves. I was really impressed. It was lovely meeting the wonderful students and ELBA team.”

It was an incredibly impactful day and we would like to thank all of our volunteers who took part in assisting and ensuring the students felt challenged and inspired throughout the course of the day, as well as wish all the girls good luck.

Part of our work at ELBA means helping students from 11+ to boost their confidence surrounding their employability skills. By taking part in such a crucial workshop helps a diverse set of female students to feel empowered and inspired and enables them to learn from female role models; which is key to education. We hope that through our continued work in schools, we will give young people the opportunity to think about further opportunities to develop their skills and knowledge, and think about their values, so that they can make change happen as women leaders of the future. Securing a prefect position is, we hope, one of many leadership positions that the girls at Sarah Bonnell will push for in their lives.

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