Virtual Open Week for West Midlands colleges and schools in response to Covid-19 shutdown

Students from across the West Midlands region will benefit from the first Virtual Open Week for schools and colleges.

The Virtual Open Week from Monday 22 to Friday 26 June is being organised and managed through the platform ( which is a dedicated careers resource that is free for schools and students to use.  

It will give all 21 colleges across the West Midlands the opportunity to virtually ‘meet’ students from more than 300 schools across the region.

Virtual Open Week for West Midlands colleges and schools in response to Covid-19 shutdown

The event is being piloted by Tamworth digital innovation firm Dev Clever, working with the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA), and supported by Birmingham education charity the Titan Partnership and the Careers Development Institute (CDi). 

Students are encouraged to explore their career and future learning options, while careers leaders in school can use it to support their careers education programmes. 

Schools will register on and their pupils will create a profile and identify the careers and subject areas that interest them the most.

Colleges design and plan the live sessions they want to deliver and these are timetabled across the week. The school students are then matched to the sessions that fit with the choices they have made on and invited to attend.

Andy Street, Mayor of the West Midlands, said: “Our young people are our future. Their contribution will be vital as we rebuild our region’s economy in the longer term after the Covid-19 crisis, so it’s critical that we support young people through this period and beyond. 

“The Virtual Open Week is a great initiative during this difficult time to help young people from across the West Midlands to find out more about the careers that interest them most.

“We are proud to be supporting the Week, and I would urge all students to make the most of this opportunity to explore what’s on offer from our local colleges.”

Chris Jeffries, CEO of Dev Clever, said: “The impact of Covid-19 means that many young people are potentially missing out on the opportunity to investigate their options and, in particular, to visit and explore what colleges can offer. 

“Working together with our partners, we are providing an opportunity for young people from across the region to connect with colleges and giving colleges a great opportunity to connect with young people at scale. This pilot has huge potential and if successful could be rolled out as a national event from next year.”

Carolyn Chapman-Lees, CEO of Titan Partnership, said: “Titan Partnership is absolutely delighted to be supporting this Dev Clever project as it very clearly addresses the much-needed help that young people need as they explore their future careers and the skills they will need.

“This dedicated week will help young people explore their career options whilst also raising awareness and aspirations. Ultimately it will assist them in realising their future potential. In these challenging times this project will not only support our young people to make important decisions, it will help our schools and colleges to work together virtually, creating real benefits, efficiencies and tangible impacts for everyone involved, most importantly for our young people.”

More information about the Virtual Open Week is available here in the events section of the WMCA’s website.

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