Why I started Uptree
I founded Uptree 4 years ago, I’d been thinking for a while that I wanted to start my own company and someone said to me if you want to start a business you should think about the biggest problem you know from your own personal experiences and work towards a solution from there. That really stuck with me and that’s what started my Uptree journey.
I thought about my personal experience, I had been a teacher for 5 years with Teach First in an inner city school in London and then also abroad in an international school in Sri Lanka. Both very different, my experience had been much more pressurised in London where I had felt like I was going into battle every day to get my students top grades at GCSE & A Level. This was our core purpose as teachers. The problem I saw as a teacher was that I didn’t have time or resources or energy to focus on each student as a whole. As a result, careers education was left by the wayside. I realised that working hard to get students great grades was not enough and many students still lacked access to other key educational experience and knowledge, particularly around the world of work and access to work experience.
I realised that this was a huge problem not only in the school where I taught but also in other schools that lack time and money to focus on careers education. I saw a huge pool of untapped talent — It’s been shown that students who meet 4 or more professional connections before leaving school are 5 times more employable. There’s an unequal playing field: young people without access to privileged networks, information or experience lack access to top employers.
At the same time business aren’t able to change. Large employers post on job boards competing for minimal talent. There is a lack of diversity in business, proving negative impacts on results. In addition, companies are struggling to fill their STEM skills gap, costing employers £1.5b per year.
I thought that if companies could connect with young people early then everyone would benefit. So that’s why Uptree was created. With Uptree young people can connect with work experience before they leave school. Companies can build a diverse talent pipeline. And it works. Our purpose is to encourage talent and empower communities.
Our vision is to support over 1 million young people through our platform in the next 5 years!
If you or your company would like to find out more about us and our work, get in touch with us via LinkedIn or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We look forward to hearing from you!