BTE Around the World
Leiden, The Netherlands
Grant Period: 2011 – 2014
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In September 2012, Johnson & Johnson expanded its European initiatives by officially launching the BTE-Leiden, The Netherlands program.
In the first year of the program, Jannsen Biologics in partnership with Stichting Very Disco, the fiscal agent, and De Praktijk, the coordinating entity, engaged 67 students in their second year of VMBO (secondary school) at The Da Vinci College. Integrated into three, nine-week science courses, BTE activities included career mapping with peer support and company tours. A team of volunteers from Janssen Biologics and teachers from the Da Vinci College provided a series of workshops and demonstrations in the areas of biology, chemistry, and engineering and will help students apply their knowledge to a student project. Da Vinci College teachers also provided tutoring and academic support to students in the areas of biology, math, and technics/ engineering.
In Year 2, the program targeted 35 students enrolled in the Beta-Mavo track and focused on career exploration activities, including guest speakers and role model sessions with Janssen employees. Short internships and student projects broadened the pupil’s view on career possibilities. Tutoring played a big role and enhanced students’ grades and their chances for passing the exams to continue to the final year of VMBO. To enhance the link to further education BTE pupils attended open days at tertiary institutions.
In the final year, BTE students participated in job shadowing and workshops at the Bio Simulation Factory in Leiden. To help the BTE students with their higher education decisions, tertiary education students provided peer support. BTE students also received exam preparation assistance. A student science project provided additional educational enrichment and communication/soft skills experiences.
BTE- Leiden proved to be very successful. An evaluation of the program shows impacts on students in the three core program areas as follows:
- Academic Enrichment: BTE students saw an increase in average science course grades (rising from 61 the end of Year 1 to 64.5 at graduation), while the comparison group dropped just over 2 points during the same time period. 100 percent of the BTE students passed their final exams which means they can all continue to the program of further education of their choice.
- Career Exploration and Readiness: BTE students are far more confident than they were at the start of the program: students reported stronger confidence in 15:19 skills surveyed. Strongest increases since the start of the program were seen in resume writing (38,8% to 88%) and interviewing (66,7% to 94%), while the comparison group scores for resume writing dropped (69.6% to 65%) and interviewing saw only modest increases (66,7% to 86%). When the program started just 10% of the students in the BTE group considered a career in the health sector; three years later about a third (31%) indicated that they plan to pursue a career in this field.
- Higher Education Exploration and Preparation: BTE students reported that activities (like career fairs and open days) helped them to confirm their decision to apply for a specific program or not. Nearly all students reported that they were confident to find a career that matches their interest and they felt supported by adults in doing so. The percentage of BTE students who planned to work immediately after secondary school dropped from between 35-40% in the BTE group to only 12%. All (100%) plan to further their education.