Invest for Success: Award-winning Diversity and Inclusion talent programme to launch this month

Arrival Education News, Investec

Earlier this year, we were delighted to find out that Invest for Success – the innovative student investment programme run by Arrival Education in partnership with Investec – won a 2018 Global Good Award (Winner for Best Education Programme). In 2017, the programme also won big at the Financial Innovation Awards as the winner for the Innovation in Social Responsibility category.

Ahead of the Invest for Success 2018-2019 programme, which will launch this month, we wanted to reflect on what makes the programme so innovative, what has made it so successful, and why it has the power to make a real difference to the communities it supports.

Read more: CSR and Social Impact

10 Year Partnership with Investec

Invest for Success is a programme developed by Arrival Education in collaboration with our long-standing partners, Investec, who we are this year celebrating 10 years of partnership with. Invest for Success is essentially a “trading game” for sixth-form students, designed to give them a taster of what working in investments could be like.

Providing Disadvantaged Students Exposure to the Finance Industry

For many of the students participating in the programme, the world of Finance is not something they have had much exposure to. A high proportion of students from the participating schools receive a pupil premium, free school meals and/or speak English as an additional language. Many of the students are also from Black, Asian or minority ethnic backgrounds. The programme also actively encourages girls to apply.

“Invest for Success was eye opening, it was exciting and it kept us constantly engaged with every week having something to do. Throughout the programme I was supported by Arrival Education and Investec inside and outside of the sessions – it was so helpful.”
– Monsur Ali, Invest for Success Student Participant

Each team (made up of four students), supported by two investment advisors, will choose four companies from a list of 20 and are also allowed to pick a ‘wild card’ company to create notional share investment portfolios using a pretend budget of £100k, with subsequent windows to make a trade fortnightly. There are monthly meetings for teams at Investec, as well as fortnightly meetings during lunchtimes at schools, with teachers encouraging engagement.

After six months, the team with the most valuable portfolio win a cash prize, as do the team for the best presentation and most engagement throughout the programme.

Invest for Success Creates Real Impact

The impact for students:

  • Giving students a basic understanding of financial markets;
  • Allowing students to get an insight into what it is like to work in the financial industries;
  • Raising students’ aspirations and developing universal employability skills;
  • Cultivating students’ confidence and an interest in a career in finance, offering relevant experience for their CVs;
  • Enabling students to learn more about themselves and how they work under pressure.

The benefits to Investec’s team:

  • They can apply their deep market knowledge to support young people from disadvantaged socioeconomic backgrounds;
  • The programme gives them the ability to contribute to helping young people get into financial careers and understand different opportunities, giving the leaders a sense of purpose;
  • They understand the different types of talent that are available and…
  • Share with their network of the impact that they’re having and increase awareness of the challenges that face this demographic;
  • It’s easy to engage with as all delivery is at the Investec offices.

The impact:

  • The 2017/18 programmes worked with 4 inner-city schools and received 4 applications for every place that we had available;
  • The programme was such a success, that Investec have extended our reach to Liverpool for 2018/19;
  • In 2017/18 we supported had 129 volunteers from Investec;
  • Last year we estimate students spent 572 hours working with the programme;
  • This year, with applications still open, we have 152 applications for 50 places so far.

Award-Winning Innovation

The 2017-18 programme was recognised for a Global Good Award due to its innovation. In particular, the programme demonstrated unique value due to its length, support from professional volunteers and its targeting and successful engagement of communities traditionally excluded from the Finance sector.

Moreover, within the programme, teams also adopt innovative ways of keeping in contact, canvassing group decisions and supporting each other to maintain engagement. WhatsApp facilitates engagement, enabling teams to connect and learn in group chats, share screenshots and voice recordings, etc. Moreover, there is also a growing LinkedIn forum for participating students. Many young people are unaware of what a vital tool LinkedIn is for careers and networking so his encourages them to join, motivating them to record and increase their work and academic experience, develop their professional networks and consider pathways into employment, including at Investec.

The 2017-18 programme was hugely successful and received from 4 participating schools. We estimate that students spent a total of 572 hours on the programme over it’s 6 month duration, ensuring that the programme had a real impact on them. Looking ahead to the 2018-19 programme, we already have more than 150 applications (and applications are not even closed yet!) from 6 participating schools. We have no doubt that this year’s programme will, like previous programmes, be hugely successful.

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