Amy Puddephatt, Second Year BA (Hons) Education Studies student at Bishop Grosseteste University (BGU), has been volunteering at a local primary school in her home town since finishing her GCSE’s. Amy has always wanted to go into teaching at Primary age and volunteering has helped develop this into a real passion. Now, thanks to the BG Futures Volunteering Award, she is able to turn that hard work into accredited professional development.
Through the BG Futures Volunteering Award, students are able to accredit their volunteering hours as a means of showcasing the professional and personal development achieved via volunteering. As a result, the team at BG Futures Careers, Employability and Enterprise gain an insight into individual’s experiences when volunteering, and how this has provided them with invaluable opportunities and a significant boost to their employability.
Amy’s volunteering has allowed her to build experience in a myriad of roles, not only has she provided classroom support and been given the opportunity to observe teachers; but she has also provided a significant amount of administration support to the wider team and has been an integral part of the support services within the school.
Additionally, through close work with the Deputy Head, Amy has gained an invaluable insight into curriculum development and lesson planning, providing her with an advantageous boost in her skills as a developing teacher.
Amy first made the decision to get into volunteering when she realised the benefit it would have to her confidence and the development of her professional skills:
“Volunteering has absolutely helped me get into the work frame of mind. Also, thanks to the support from colleagues I’m now much more confident and knowledgeable, which spurs me on further.
"The value added from my volunteering isn’t just professional, it’s personal as well; the social aspect of working in a team has been enjoyable and has contributed significantly to my well-being. I feel valued and part of a team.
"I’d encourage anyone thinking of volunteering to dip your toe in, even if it’s only for a little while. Particularly students hoping to do a PGCE as this experience can be key – you gain much more than you lose.”
These sentiments are echoed by the Head Teacher of the school who speaks extremely highly of Amy’s contribution to the team:
“Any tasks we ask Amy to do are carried out with professionalism and care. She has been a valuable part of the team and although we are all really sad to say goodbye to Amy we hope she will come back again.”
Becky Goodman, Enterprise Development Manager at BGU said:
“The commitment Amy has made to volunteering in her local community is exemplary, and I would encourage all BGU students to think about what they could do in terms of volunteering. Volunteering is a great way of giving back whilst allowing you to make new connections and developing your skills.”
Cassie Rainey, BG Futures Administrator leads on the volunteering award at BGU and will be available to discuss the award more with you during Student Volunteering Week.
If you’d like to get into volunteering, or if you’d like to accredit your hours already accrued through volunteering via the BG Futures Volunteering Award, email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information and find out where volunteering will take you!