As a new academic year got under way, the HKGCC Business-School Partnership (BSP) Programme also launched its 2019/2020 edition with a Briefing Meeting for participants at the Chamber on 14 October.
This year’s programme has a record high of 55 companies and 50 schools joining, and more than 100 representatives from participating schools and businesses attended the event. The companies taking part include SMEs and multinational corporations, and represent a wide range of industries, which means they can provide a variety of different activities for students throughout the academic year. These include company visits, mentorship programmes, career advice from HR professionals, and talks by senior executives.
St. Mark’s School is a regular participant in the BSP Programme. Peter Wong, the school representative, said: “With the Chamber’s extensive connections in the business community, we can contact companies from various sectors through joining this programme.”
The briefing event allowed principals, teachers and company representatives to meet in person and discuss the plans for the year ahead. During the session, the businesspeople learned more about the expectations of the schools, and together they came up with proposals for activities.
“Our company has been providing career talks and internships for university students, and we hope to extend these activities to secondary school students,” said Andy Wong, Head of Human Resources from Zurich Insurance (Hong Kong), which is joining the programme for the first time.
Besides giving students an insight into the realities of working life, the BSP Programme can also open their minds to the opportunities available in different job roles and sectors. Alex Liu, Director of Advance Resources Personnel Consultants, said that many students are confused when it comes to selecting university majors and unclear about their future career paths. Through the programme, he and his team can help students to prepare for tertiary education and identify their career goals.
In his opening remarks, Watson Chan, HKGCC Deputy CEO (Policy & Business Development), said that the BSP Programme provides a platform for schools and the business sector to communicate. “Through activities organized by our member companies, students can learn how businesses operate and the skills required for their future career development.”
Wilkins Lau, Assistant Manager of Talent Development, gave an outline of the programme and also encouraged teachers to sign up to the Student Ambassador Scheme. Participants in this scheme have the opportunity to join selected Chamber events, such as the Business Summit and CEO Manpower Conference. They also take on organizing duties at the Closing Ceremony at the end of the programme, giving them first-hand experience of planning, preparing and arranging a professional event.
Lau also thanked the three co-organizers of the programme – the Association of English Medium Secondary Schools, the Association of Chinese Middle Schools and the Hong Kong Association of Careers Masters and Guidance Masters – as well as media partner CTgoodjobs, for their support.