Education,  Philosophy

The Labels We Give Our Young People

What would happen if we treated every young person as a young professional, and chose to see their potential rather than their label?

16 -24 year olds are the hardest hit group when it comes to unemployment and are often negatively stigmatised, yet it is them who will take the reigns of industry and policy in the not too distant future. The support for young people to prepare themselves for life beyond education is inconsistent, and in many cases failing. Laura-Jane believes it is time to look at young people differently and change the systems around them which are no longer fit for purpose. As a society each one of us has the power to make a positive difference for the young people within our communities, and the responsibility to do so.

Laura-Jane Rawlings is the Founder and Chief Executive of Youth Employment UK CIC. Before launching Youth Employment UK CIC, Laura-Jane worked for many years in the recruitment sector, achieving recognition for her coaching work which enabled students to senior managers to exceed their career aspirations.
As a recruiter, Laura-Jane was well placed to see the challenges facing young people leaving education and the issues of the employment community. Spending time to better understand the structural issues of youth unemployment and the policy around the area Laura-Jane founded Youth Employment UK in 2012.
Passionate about the careers agenda for young people and believing all young people should be inspire about their future, Laura-Jane works closely with careers inspiration platform Plotr. In 2016 Laura-Jane was nominated and shortlisted for the Careers Champion Award.

This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at

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