An interactive event aimed at strengthening future links between education and employment in Haverhill has been hailed a success.
The Haverhill Skills Forum was designed to start conversations between employers and those who plan and provide education in Haverhill for the 16-60 age group.
It examined skills shortages and what would help potential employees be more work-ready in the years to come.
The event was organised by ONE Haverhill Partnership and Suffolk Chamber of Commerce in Haverhill & District with support from St Edmundsbury and Forest Heath councils, and saw local businesses, educationalists and West Suffolk MP Matt Hancock all in attendance.
It was moderated by David Triggs, of Renewable Education, who led discussions around what skills employers were looking for in young people and broader subjects including broadband and improving transport links.
John Mayhew, Chair of ONE Haverhill Partnership and Board member of Suffolk Chamber of
Commerce in Haverhill & District, said: “This joint initiative was a starting point to encourage local employers to begin a dialogue about the skills they will need in the future.
“We want potential job candidates of all ages in Haverhill to be as work-ready as possible and this was a great opportunity to offer a platform for educationalists and the business community to start working much closer together.”
Mr Hancock, the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, said: “I was delighted to attend the Haverhill Skills Forum and formally welcome guests.
“It is so important to have employer engagement and it is great to see a partnership growing between learning and the skills needed for work – both now and in the future.”
In its business plan released last year, ONE Haverhill Partnership outlined improving educational opportunities for young and old alike as one of its key priorities.
Alongside this, Suffolk Chamber of Commerce recently launched its manifesto highlighting the need to bridge the worlds of education and work.