FINLAND | Forest of Opportunities: Biggest workplace school campaign

This is a school campaign for Finnish 8th graders (14-15) and high school students (16-18) representing forest industry’s study and working opportunities, circular economy, basics of forest management, role of forests in mitigating climate change and products made from wood. “School ambassadors”, meaning forest industry experts from different occupations and companies, visit schools either physically or virtually. There is a wood product portfolio involved in the campaign. Each attending school gets a case full of products made from wood. The case is designed to be a part of teaching different subjects: chemistry, mathematics, arts, student counselling etc.
The campaign has been going on since 2013. 25 000 students each year are reached, which is half of the age group in Finland.

Key stakeholders:
– Finnish Forest Industries Federation
– Forest Product Engineers
– Finnish Forest Association
– Metsä Group
– Stora Enso UPM
– Versowood
– DS Smith Sappi Kirkniemi
– Koskisen Oy
– Pölkky Oy
– Tornator
– Corex
– Delfort

Specific Benefits:
Excellent way to reach big groups of young people and share knowledge with both students and teachers/councillors. During the visit, the students get a clearer idea of what today’s forest industry is really like: its diverse study and job opportunities, how sustainability is related to everything the industry does, and all the products that can be manufactured from wood.

Conditions for success:
Someone to coordinate the campaign (in this case we have a coordinator from FFIF’s comms team).

Campaign web page:

POLAND | Entrepreneurship Day

As part of the International Paper’s collaboration with the school Complex No. 2 in Kwidzyn, the program objective is to better prepare upper secondary school students to enter the labor market by showing young people the realities of the labor market and the challenges ahead.

Key stakeholders:
– School Complex No. 2 in Kwidzyn
– International Paper

Conditions for success:
Showing young people the realities of the labor market and the challenges ahead.

GERMANY | Design employer branding measures together with apprentices

WEPA in Germany designs employer branding measures together with apprentices such as videos, advertisements, interviews, apprearance at trade fairs, content for the company website. The aim is to address the target group in a suitable and targeted manner via various media channels and to generate enthusiasm for the company.

Key stakeholders:

Specific Benefits:
– Address the target group directly and inspire them to work for the company
– Draw attention to the company and thus generate a large number of good applications

Conditions for success:
Create targeted employer branding across different channels to generate high quality applications.

GERMANY | Internships and project weeks with local associations

Essity Germany offers internships for students to get to know the paper professions at first hand. Essity also participates in project weeks with local associations.

Key stakeholders:
– Company
– Pupils in school/participants of special programs

Specific Benefits:
Interships offer the possibility to get personal contact to pupils, and allowing company and pupils get to know each other better.

Conditions for success:
There is the need to have on-site support.

ITALY | Lucca Paper Educational District – Paper technology working group

Lucca paper district plays a strategic role in the Italian national industry, with more than 100 companies and a strong connection with the territory, and with a strong commitment to the educational world.
During the last decades, thanks to the dedication, engagement and cooperation between the industrial sector, university, high technical institutes and Confindustria Toscana Nord – the local branch of the National Industry Association – they have been able to build an extraordinary technical education system. The general purpose is to train young people transmitting them technical knowledge and to attract and retain skilled young workers in the pulp and paper industry.
By building a structed educational system, that is organized through different levels, they work with the aim of transferring and increasing the professional skills and expertise of the young people, in order to help them obtaining high level competences that are valuable for the paper industry. These educational initiatives are part of a complex system, starting from the guidance seminars organized in the middle school, to technical high school courses specifically designed on pulp and paper industry needs, to the higher level of university education.

Brief description of the best practice:
A Paper Technology Working Group project has the goal to create/reinforce the link between education and industry, making both sides aware of the respective needs. The aim of the project is to promote the awareness of the skills required by young people in the professional world and to connect students, teachers, families and companies in order to facilitate young peoples’ choice in terms of training and work paths. The challenge concerns both schools and companies.
The former working on the skills that are functional to the professional world and acting to renew the methodological approach favouring interdisciplinarity, laboratory teaching, problem solving, project work and self-entrepreneurship. The latter becoming more focused on the educational aspect, transmitting to the young people skills and tasks required in the daily job.
The meetings are also focused on adapting the school programmes to the industry needs in order to make the training plan much more suitable to the knowledge and skills required in the workplace.
Another activity of the project consists in career counselling events planned during the year for the middle school and high school students.
The working group organises also the convention “Carta Bianca al tuo Futuro” (Carte blanche to your Future), a conference open to the students, their families, stakeholders and dedicated to promotet the leading role of the paper sector in the local territory also in terms of job opportunities.

Key stakeholders:
– Teachers
– Pulp and paper companies
– Students

Specific Benefits:
– For teachers: to encourage students when choosing their school and training path, to have a better knowledge of the different job roles and of the training needed to be able to access them and, more generally, to support more conscious life choices with respect to their aspirations and vocations and to the real opportunities and demands coming from the business world
– For companies: The initiative allows the enterprise to be more recognisable within the territory, promoting its social role and its training function. Opening its doors to the school means making itself known to students, their teachers and their families, and to be an active player in defining what is actually taught to the next generation. A stronger relationship is thus created between the company and the local area in which it operates
– For students: the activity aims to encourage young people to choose their training and work paths with awareness and competence

Conditions for success:
– Companies involvement in terms of technical human resources
– Strong relationship between teachers and companies
– Strong local promotional activities to sponsor the initiatives

BELGIUM | DS Smith: Event/video with Belgian TV

This video with Belgian TV deals with the theme of female workers in DS Smith: #STEMhelden (STEM heroes):  In the video, education and the labor market are combined in a promotional campaign that creates #stemheroes in which different sectors and education are jointly focused.

Key stakeholders:
– STEM platform
– DS Smith
– PaperPackSkills sector fund

Specific Benefits:
– There is focus on the right target audience, namely young students who have to choose a STEM study option, a child reporter is used to ask questions about the profession to the person who practices the profession
– Clarity is created by specific professions pictured in the videos – this always works more concretely
– The focus is on female profiles in STEM professions, so that young girls also feel attracted to take a STEM course

Conditions for success: Joint commitment of different actors who consider STEM important, such as:
– Leading role of the STEM platform
– Support for video by
– Financial support from PaperPackSkills sectorfund
– Support for finding a suitable company by PaperPackSkills
– Commitment by the company DS Smith who understand the importance of STEM and has given permission to film within the company
– Help spread the message #STEMheroes and the videos from Technopolis, a center known for children and youth around technology

POLAND | Donations

As part of the International Paper’s collaboration with the school Complex No. 2 in Kwidzyn, to rise young people’s interest in technology and the paper industry a series of donations are implemented, including: (1) paper, trade magazines, archival copies; and (2) one-time scholarships for the best students in grades II, III, IV as well as financial donation for the organization of a technical knowledge competition.

Key stakeholders:
– International Paper
– Schools and training institutions in Kwidzyn

Conditions for success:
Arousing young people’s interest in technology and the paper industry.