Industry Spotlight Talks: Speakers for Schools

Speakers for Schools [SfS] is a social mobility charity delivering high-level experiences from top employers and celebrities to students aged 11-19 in over 2,000 state funded schools; expanding their networks and develop the necessary confidence, skills, and knowledge to become better prepared for the world of work.

The 2023 Shropshire report into food industry labour shortages is one of many which highlight the need to increase the awareness and attractiveness of the food industry to UK students to help us reduce waste and improve productivity, trade, sustainability, and UK food security.

SfS has developed the virtual platform Industry Spotlight which enables businesses to broadcast a “Ted Talk” style presentation to multiple schools simultaneously without the need to travel. Post-covid, school culture is much more accepting of receiving these experiences virtually.

In May 2024 Martyn Robinson and Sophie Allison from Mondelēz International’s Bournville Chocolate R&D Centre created a 30-minute video to highlight the diverse range of career types on site. This took students on a chronological journey through the product development process including Product and Pack development, Process Engineering, Sensory Science, and the Supply Chain. The video was followed by a SfS facilitated 30-minute Q&A session where student questions were posted by the teachers into the platforms’ chat box to be answered live.

Mondelēz International’s Martyn Robinson said, “Speakers for Schools Industry Spotlight platform is a great opportunity for anyone in any part of the food industry, from farm to fork, to open minds and encourage students to consider building a career in an industry which is as secure and stable as it is vital”.

For more information about how to get involved, contact