Inverness Chamber of Commerce’s International Trade team had the pleasure of hosting a work experience placement during the summer holidays for Fortrose Pupil, Islay Rutter. The placement was organised by DYW Inverness & Central Highlands through School Coordinator, Ashley Woodhouse. Hear from Islay about her experience and what she got up to over the past few weeks!
Tell us a bit about yourself?
My name is Islay Rutter and I am 16 years old. I attend Fortrose Academy and have just gone into my sixth and final year of school. I have recently completed my higher exams where I did Maths, English, PE, History and Biology. In my last year of school, I will be doing Advanced Higher Biology, English and History.
What do you like to do in your free time?
In my free time I enjoy meeting up with my friends whether it’s to head to the beach, cycle around the Black Isle, go for day trips wherever we can with free bus travel or to just go to someone’s house. As well as this, I am a member of Highland Hockey Club and currently play for the Ladies 2nds and the Highland District team. I also go to Inverness Harriers Athletics Clubs and have run many distances such as cross countries, 5ks, even a couple 100 meters but currently prefer to take part in a 300m.
What are you hoping to do after you leave school?
When I leave school, I hope to attend university and study something to do with Politics, History or International Relations. Before this, I would like to travel for a bit. I am undecided of where exactly I want to go but the idea of seeing the world before I start studying again sounds nice to me.
What would be your dream job?
I would like to work in politics when I’m older but probably not as a politician. The idea of being a political journalist or a diplomat has interested me for a long time, so probably one of those two.
Tell us a bit about your work experience placement with the International Trade team at Inverness Chamber of Commerce?
I found out about the Inverness Chamber of Commerce through my DYW school coordinator, Ashley Woodhouse, when I contacted him and arranged a meeting. He proposed I emailed and asked for any opportunities within the business which, luckily, there were. I have spent four days during the summer holidays here in Inverness, as the International Trade Team have shown me part of the work they do. On the first day, I researched Chambers that were part of the Global Business Network and their locations, compiled a list of Scottish Development International and Department for Business & Trade offices worldwide and investigated which countries had free trade agreements with the UK as well as those currently in negotiation. On my second day, I researched the markets of India and Namibia as possible locations for trade missions. Within this, I was looking into the key sector opportunities of these countries, statistics on their economies, economic hubs within the countries, main cities and other potentially important statistics.
The next time I was in the Chamber myself, Changu and Sarah, who make up the international team, began planning a trade mission to Ontario, Canada. We looked at the costs of the mission and a value breakdown for the delegates, before planning the agenda and what events would take place. They showed me insight on how the Scottish Government controls the trade missions and what measures and criteria must be followed. On the fourth and final day, we planned the timeline of the trade mission and the course of actions they must complete to ensure that the mission runs successfully. As well as this, I got to see the processes that must be followed to run a trade mission – by submitting a bid to be reviewed by the Scottish Government.
What has been your favourite thing about the experience?
My favourite thing about the experience has been getting an insight to the trade missions and all the work that is put in to ensure that they run smoothly. Before this experience, I had never had any exposure to a trade mission or what it was but the international team exhibited how it would be organized, how they would advertise it and the structure of events. I particularly enjoyed seeing the process of filling out a bid for a trade mission and the information the government needs to approve a mission.
Would you recommend the experience to other school pupils looking to gain some practical work experience?
I would recommend the experience to any pupil. The atmosphere is lovely at the workplace and the people are helpful and welcoming. As well as this, it has taught me more about the Government trade processes and overseas trade in general. It was engaging, informative and I can leave feeling happy that I have got the most out of the experience.
Thanks to Islay for joining us and thanks to DYW School Coordinator, Ashley for introducing us!