Rt Hon Eric Pickles MP, Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, welcomed 20 students on the Mosaic mentoring programme from Westminster City School, London into his department to learn more about his role and that of his department.
The visit was one of the students’ ‘World of Work’ visits organised by Mosaic as part of their year-long mentoring programme. Only one of the students had ever visited a government department before, despite the school being located in the heart of Whitehall and only a stone’s throw from the headquarters of the Department of Communities.
The highlight of the visit was a 40-minute Question and Answer session with Mr Pickles himself. The students questioned the Secretary of State on his role, why he entered politics and his hopes and ambitions in government. The students also touched on more sensitive political issues, such as benefits issues, enjoying the opportunity to talk direct to a Cabinet Minister. The students really appreciated this opportunity; one student said, “I enjoyed the talking and asking questions to Mr Pickles.” Another said, “It was great because we got to meet people who make a difference to us and ask questions”.
The students from the school spent a morning meeting the Communities Secretary and a number of top civil servants to gain an understanding of government, the democratic process and career opportunities available in the civil service. The students were given an overview of the work of the department and the range of career opportunities available in the civil service.
Presentations from top civil servants on key policy areas, such as the government’s response to last year’s riots, the work to support ‘troubled families’ and the work of the media team to promote fire safety gave the students a unique insight into the range of work undertaken by department. The students were genuinely surprised by the range of areas the department covers and the relevance of those issues to their own lives, making government far more relevant to them.
World of Work visits are an integral part of our secondary school mentoring programme, providing students with access to business environments that they would not otherwise have the opportunity to visit. Find out more about what is involved
If your business could host a visit, please email us at
Eric Pickles MP will be the keynote speaker at the Better Community Business Network’s prestigious networking and charity event, at the London Marriott in Mayfair on 14th September. An elite group of business leaders and professionals will come together to network and raise funds to support Mosaic’s work. Click here to find out more and book a place