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When Nathan left school during S5, he wasn’t sure what he wanted to do with his life – but support from Skills Development Scotland's (SDS) Next Step programme has given the Borders teen more direction. 

Nathan first got in contact with SDS during his final few weeks at school. 

After leaving school, he decided to participate in SDS’s Next Steps programme. Next Steps is aimed at young people aged 16 to 18-and-a-half, and involves an intensive programme of careers information, advice and guidance. 

At regular meetings, he got to know his careers adviser, worked out what was important to him, set himself some goals and looked at how best to achieve them. 

He started to explore different opportunities and did some research on the local labour market in the Borders. 

Nathan didn’t feel ready to go straight into work, preferring instead to look into training and apprenticeships. With the support of his careers adviser, he established a plan and continued to attend the centre on a weekly basis where he received practical support with job searching, interview techniques, applications and CV building. 

Nathan showed a great deal of commitment, attending appointments every week, and kept in contact outside of appointments.  

Through these meetings, Nathan grew in confidence, developed his skills and became better prepared for life after school. 

When a training placement became available with an SDS partner, Nathan was keen to apply. He was invited to an interview and was immediately offered a placement at a local café.  

Through the placement, he impressed both the training provider and the employer – and at the end, he was offered a contract. 


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