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GT Scholars won the Initiative of the Year at The National Insurance Awards 2023.
The event took place in London and celebrated excellence in the insurance industry. The event focuses on highlighting the companies and teams that are eminent in their field.
The Initiative of the Year category recognises organisations and their game-changing ideas and programmes reshaping the insurance business.
GT Scholars x Brit Insurance Digital Challenge
In 2021, Brit Insurance, a leading Lloyds Insurance Syndicate specialising in commercial insurance, contacted GT Scholars. Brit Insurance wanted to partner with GT Scholars to work with a younger audience. Their main aim was to tackle the diversity challenge at its root cause.
Brit Insurance has focused on changing this area long-term through its diversity and outreach programmes and initiatives. They wanted to reach a wider audience, create a greater awareness of careers in insurance and see an overall long-term change in the insurance industry.
In May 2022, GT Scholars ran the GT Scholars x Brit Insurance Digital Challenges. The Digital Challenges help support young people’s career aspirations and create awareness of the various career opportunities available.
This unique collaboration gave young people across the UK a chance to gain work experience. The Digital Challenges helped young people build their employability skills while getting first-hand insight into insurance.
Over 795 young people from 89 schools across England participated in the challenges. These young people came from various backgrounds; for some, it was their first work experience.
Why Did We Create These Digital Challenges?
The Digital Challenges help make work experience more accessible to young people from all backgrounds.
According to a report by Education and Employers: Disconnected: Career Aspirations and Jobs in the UK, 2020, young people are not being educated about the workforce and areas of demand.
Five times as many young people want to work in culture, art, entertainment and sport as they believe more jobs are available in these fields. Over half of those young people are not interested in pursuing other careers.
This means that if young people aren’t aware of career opportunities or different types of industries, their career choices and prospects become very limited.
In addition, there are other challenges young people face. For instance, according to research, over 45% of young people aged 16-19 stated that not having access to work experience opportunities is the most significant barrier to success in their future careers.
Moreover, those from lower-income homes do not have the resources, contacts and networks to learn about work experience.
Challenges in the Insurance Industry
There are challenges in the UK’s Insurance Industry as well. Research shows that diversity is an issue in the industry in the UK.
According to the Insurance Times, Just not enough women in insurance 2018; women represent approximately 29% of employees in the insurance industry (compared to 50% in Law). The Insurance Post Insurance Census 2019 states that only 7% of employees in the insurance industry are from Black, Asian and ethnic minority backgrounds.
There are 40% more full-time male employees than full-time female employees in the financial and insurance industries in the UK (Report published by F.Norrestad, Number of full-time employees in the financial and insurance sector in the UK 2021).
The research shows that introducing diversity and inclusion initiatives won’t work independently. There needs to be a change in how talent is brought into the industry to tackle diversity. Young people from all backgrounds must be encouraged to consider a career in insurance from the earliest possible age.
How the Challenges Were Designed
The online digital challenge is an alternative to the everyday work experience. GT Scholars took many factors into account when creating the challenges. The team wanted the challenges to reach young people from diverse backgrounds without geographical barriers preventing them from joining. As well as ensuring young people, especially those from less-privileged backgrounds, avoided paying large amounts to join.
Young people could access the challenges from the comfort of their homes. They could join using their phone or laptop, irrespective of where in the UK they were from.
What the Challenges Involved
GT Scholars worked with experts from Brit Insurance and co-designed five unique challenges that explored the different roles in insurance. The challenges aimed to help young people learn about the insurance industry. They could apply what they’ve learnt to real-life scenarios through the challenges. The challenges were designed to help young people develop their research, presentation, creativity, and analytical skills.
As part of the challenge, young people learned how to solve insurance-related problems. This provided real-life scenarios that introduced them to new concepts and built their employability skills.
The young people who completed all five online challenges were given a Certificate of Completion. This could be added to their CV or Personal Statement.
Career Insight Day and Winners
Twenty-five finalists were selected and invited to a Career Insight Day, which was held at the Brit Insurance Head office in London. Finalists spent the day interacting and meeting the experts at Brit Insurance and learned about a typical day at their offices.
Each young person received a cash prize of £100 from Brit Insurance. The top three winners were chosen, winning prizes and £500 for each of their winning schools.
Dariusz Tomaszewski-Guerrero from Dartford Grammer School was one of the top three winners. He did exceptionally well in the GT Scholars x Brit Insurance Digital Challenges and was featured in the Dartford Living Magazine. You can read more about his experience here.
Temi Kamson, Founder and CEO of GT Scholars, was also at the Careers Insight Day in London. You can watch the video here to hear how she felt about the digital challenges.
How Have the Digital Challenges Helped Young People?
The Digital Challenges have positively impacted the lives of so many young people across the UK by helping them gain online work experience and build their employability skills while creating an awareness of the various careers in the insurance industry.
Feedback received from the participants after the challenges found that young people were able to improve their research skills and felt more confident when doing a presentation. Many participants also said the challenges helped them improve their speaking and writing skills.
Moreover, impact data showed that 100% of the young people felt more confident about achieving their future aspirations and believed that what they learnt would help them achieve their aspirations.
In addition, over 90% of young people believed that Careers Insight Day helped them improve their team working skills, and they would continue looking into careers in insurance beyond the challenges.
To learn more about the award-winning GT Scholars x Brit Insurance Digital Challenges, and the positive difference it has made in the lives of young people, you can read the GT Scholars x Brit Insurance Impact Report.
What Did GT Scholars Achieve?
The Digital Challenges allowed GT Scholars to gain new school partnerships across the UK, expand their reach, and work with more young people. The challenges bridged the gap between young people and career opportunities, and GT Scholars increased PR and raised their and Brit Insurance’s profiles.
GT Scholars’ Future Plans for the Digital Challenges
GT Scholars aim to partner with more corporates from various industries and continue running digital challenges each year. By running digital challenges, GT Scholars hopes to:
- Raise and support the aspirations of young people
- Help young people connect with companies across the UK
- Help young people learn about various careers, especially careers they may have otherwise not considered
- Provide online work experience in multiple industries
- Provide digital challenges as a way forward for improving diversity in all industries
“Our vision in the next ten years is to work with individuals and companies that are passionate about diversity and inclusion, particularly those that want to take practical steps to influence the prospects and, in the long term, permanently change the narrative for young people from less-advantaged backgrounds.” – Temi Kamson, Founder and CEO of GT Scholars.
GT Scholars is so pleased to have won the Initiative of the Year Award.
It is a prestigious achievement for GT Scholars and the Digital Challenges. Winning the Initiative of the Year Award is a giant step in improving social mobility for UK youth.
Why Partner With GT Scholars?
GT Scholars has over seven years of experience and educational expertise in helping young people. As a result, GT Scholars has helped many young scholars reach their career aspirations and prepare them for their career journey. With a network of over 450 partner schools across the UK, GT Scholars can help your company build impactful digital challenges that will reach young people far and wide.
If your corporate organisation wants to make a real difference in the lives of young people across the UK, get in touch with GT Scholars to learn more about building digital challenges. Your company can benefit from connecting with and attracting diverse new talent and making a long-term change in your industry.