D2N2 LEP Careers Hub

Local enterprise D2N2 LEP Careers Hub has celebrated the success of its first careers event which brought together top employers and educators from across the region.

This session marks the start of plans to help East Midlands teachers develop their curriculums in collaboration with employers.

Equipping teachers with an understanding of what recruiting organisations look for is the first step to better shaping the learning of current and future generations and bridging the gap between schools and employment.

The Careers in the Curriculum Conference welcomed senior leaders at Coca-Cola Europacific Partners, JCB and Ideagen as well as teachers from across Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire schools such as Bilborough College, Derby College and Chesterfield College to help ensure pupils are best prepared for the transition from education to work.


Taking place at the University of Derby’s Enterprise Centre, the collaboration between The East Midlands Institute of Technology and D2N2 LEP Careers Hub was the first of its kind and well received by the 45 plus teachers and 10 employers who attended.

Teaching staff told D2N2 that the event equipped them with a stronger knowledge of the skills directive of the region and gave them the confidence to adapt their teaching plans to address the skills demanded by employers in the working world.

CEO of D2N2, Will Morlidge, commented: “We have been delighted with the response from those who attended our inaugural event.

“The education and employment collaboration through the Careers in the Curriculum Conference is exciting and as a Careers Hub, we are keen to foster this approach with all skill sectors across the region.

“Moving forward, we will be organising more events like this, ensuring each sector of employment has representation, as well as involving the wider community such as parents and carers.”

The even took place amid a pressing need to bridge the gap between organisations and educators.

The number of young people in employment from November 2023 to January 2024, was 163,000 less than it was before the pandemic, while the number of inactive young people was 378,000 above pre-pandemic levels.[1]

Kerren Ratcliffe, Associate Director at Coca Cola was one of the representatives of large-scale employers in attendance.

She said: “The event was excellent and insightful. With the time constraints both employers and teachers have it is important to ensure that any time we do spend together is impactful and has scale.

“This event allowed teachers to ask questions, demystify the recruitment process and jointly consider ideas that will better support students in preparing for their next steps. We have some great actions coming out of the day and look forward to working on them.”

The D2N2 Careers Hub is a local enterprise funded by the Department for Education.

With the aim of connecting employers to local people and their teachers, the organisation has developed a range of programmes and schemes to help bridge the gap between education and employment for youngsters.

Aaron Denton who attended in his role as Director of Student Experience and Pastoral Support at Derby College added: “Derby College Group (DCG) was delighted to be involved in the inaugural D2N2’s Careers in the Curriculum Event.

“It gave us many opportunities to meet with employers and other education providers and discuss how we can enrich our lessons and create additional links to employment paths for our young people.

“We are passionate at DCG at helping young people get into the world of work, and this event gave us additional food for thought.

“And as a partner of The East Midlands Institute of Technology, such events help drive us towards our aim of delivering world-class, research-orientated and employer-led courses.”

The D2N2 Careers Hub works with 175 secondary schools inclusive of Further Education institutions, support centres and SEND schools.