Hundreds of school pupils are getting a taste of the world of work at the Stadium of Light today.
Work Discovery Week, supported by Sunderland City Council, SAFC and the North East Chamber of Commerce (NECC) , kicked off this morning.
The week forms part of the Work Discovery Sunderland programme, in which youngsters can learn more about industries and develop new skills before they make a decision on their future career.
This year’s event has attracted support from companies, including a number of top North East firms which have signed up as sponsors.
The University of Sunderland, Sunderland College, MAKE it Sunderland, North East LEP, Liebherr, the Bridges and Nissan were among the first to commit, and they were soon joined by a host of other firms, including Accenture, Gentoo, Sunderland BID, Calsonic Kansei and Northern Print Solutions.
Work Discovery Week will bring together around 1,000 youngsters from schools across Sunderland for five days of activities.
Today's Careers Fair features trade stands, workshops, fun challenges and hands-on activities at the Stadium of Light, and there will also be the opportunity to visit various businesses across the city.
Farringdon Academy head Howard Kemp is co-chairman of Work Discovery Sunderland.
"This is the fifth Work Discovery Day we have done," he said. "There must be a thousand young people here today.
"We started in 2013 and it has just been growing ever since. It is really important - we have benefited very much as people who work with youngsters and it helps the children to set their aspirations, to plan for the future and to appreciate the huge range of opportunities there are to help them fulfil their ambitions."
Ian Green is a senior manager at the Nissan Skills Foundation, and addressed the crowd as part of the opening ceremony this morning.
"It is incredibly important for Nissan to be part of this event," he said.
"It is really important that we are a part of something that is big in the city. We have involvement with schools throughout the region, but we are a Sunderland-based plant."