In 2016, the IB Career-related programme has started its 6th year at Greenfield Community School and continues to grow in numbers. From the humble beginnings of 4, it has grown to the current 43 in this academic year with 37 students having graduated so far.

The IB Career-related programme began its life in 2011 with GCS being asked to be one of the first pilot schools across the world. The programme was developed by IB to merge the two curriculum pathways of academic and career-related education. They saw that many students had an idea of a career path and also many students learnt in different ways to the normal ‘examination based’ approach. The IB Career-related programme adopts all the usual high standards of an IB education and includes the academic IB Diploma subjects which students can study. But it also has a more specific career focus which enables students to study an additional external course and gain extra qualifications. At GCS we offer the UK based, BTEC (Business and Technical Education Council) Level 3 qualification which meets many university entry requirements. The BTEC course is very much a practical way of delivering education which is unit based and has a rigour process of continual assessment. It is approved by the KHDA in Dubai and is listed on the UK’s university entry system known as UCAS (University Central Admissions Service). As BTEC is delivered in over 140 countries worldwide, it is also recognised by many international universities, colleges and employers.

When students study the IB Career-related programme at GCS, they get an exciting and integrated approach to education where they are able to study academic subjects, develop key life skills, complete a challenging work placement/internship programme and also gain an internationally recognised professional BTEC qualification.

To date, 37 students have graduated from the IBCP at GCS with 30 now attending universities and studying degrees in countries such as United States, Canada, UK, Holland, India and the UAE. 2 students have studied university foundations courses before starting on a full degree course. 5 students have chosen to start employment. Our very first cohort have now completed their university courses with 2 gaining full Degrees in business administration and 2 gaining Higher National Diplomas. Our very first student, Alina is now studying for a Master’s Degree in Business at Wollongong University in Dubai. She says of the IBCP ‘I really enjoyed the IBCP because it was mostly practical and I liked the way the BTEC course was based on units and continually assessed. I also chose DT & Art as my IB Diploma subjects because I want to work in interior design. One of the best parts for me was the work placement where I worked for Ashtaar Interiors which is based in the DIP. They were really helpful and I now work with them as an intern when I am nit studying at Uni. The IBCP certainly gave me opportunities’.

Another graduate of the IBCP, Aaron says ‘I was accepted onto the IB Diploma course but wanted to specialise on business. I liked the way everything was integrated with the CP and we developed so many skills which we were able to transfer to other areas. The CP is not just about studying for exams, but developing real life skills. I took a gap year to work, and am now I am at Greenwich University in London where I am studying a degree in business. The IBCP certainly prepared me for this and a career afterwards. I would encourage any student’.