Today, our featured career is ‘Member of Parliament (MP)’. Each constituency (local area) in the UK has an elected person who represents them in Parliament: an MP. Most MPs are a member of a political party. The political party with the most MPs elected (so long as they have more than half the total number of MPs) becomes the Government, and the leader of that political party becomes the Prime Minister.
Parliament works to check and challenge the government. Parliament has three elements: The House of Commons; The House of Lords and the Monarchy.
House of Commons: this consists of all MPs, whether they are a member of the Government or not (these are the Opposition MPs). In the House of Commons, important topics are debated, laws are discussed, and MPs are able to influence the government. The Speaker oversees discussion between the Government and the Opposition.
House of Lords: this consists of around 800 life-peers, who are nominated for their skills to review potential new laws. Approved nominees become Lords or Baronesses, and become a member of the House of Lords. Some members are hereditary members (the inherit their membership to the House of Lords), and some bishops are also members. The House of Lords works similarly to the House of Commons, discussing laws and voting on them. The House of Lords and the House of Commons must agree on a law before it can be passed into law.
The Monarch: meets the Prime Minister once a week to discuss current affairs, and they sign every new law.
Anneliese Dodds MP
Current Role: Oxford East MP, Labour and Co-operative Party; Chair of the Labour Party and the Labour Party’s policy review
Undergraduate Degree: Politics, Philosophy and Economics BA, University of Oxford
Brief Biography: Whilst at university, Anneliese Dodds MP served as president of the Oxford University Student Union, protesting in support of LGBT rights, and against tuition fees being introduced to UK universities. After her undergraduate degree, Anneliese Dodds MP completed a Masters degree (Social Policy) at the University of Edinburgh, and then a PhD examining liberalisation in Higher Education in France and the UK at London School of Economics. Anneliese Dodds also completed a postdoctoral fellowship, researching at the Economic and Social Research Council.
Anneliese Dodds MP was elected into office in 2014, as a Member of the European Parliament for South East England. In 2017, Anneliese Dodds MP was elected as the Member of Parliament for Oxford East, and she has continued as the Oxford East MP since then. Anneliese Dodds MP has held the following roles: Shadow Treasury Minister; Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer; Chair of the Labour Party and the Labour Party’s policy review.
As a Member of Parliament, it is essential to understand how the UK Parliament functions. For today’s activities, you will learn about the UK Parliament, and how a vote is carried out on key issues and new laws. You will be introduced to some current relevant topics in UK politics, decide how you feel about this topic, and prepare an argument to put across your point of view. Plus, try out the UK Parliament game, to see how successful you would be as an MP!
Want to know more?
To find out more about working as a MP, in the local Government and other public services, take a look at the following explore-a-career pages:
- Oxford University Careers Service: Government and Public Services
- National Careers Service: MP
To explore other career options that might interest you, there are lots of tool available! We recommend starting by exploring job sectors and occupations on the following websites:
Talking to people who are currently doing a role you are interested in, organising some work experience where you can shadow someone doing this role, or reading first-hand accounts from people working in the area you are interested in can all help you find out more about a particular job!
To find out more about studying a subject at University, you can also talk to St John’s Undergraduates on The Ambassador Platform (TAP) by clicking here!
Share with us!
We would love to see any examples of work that you do during your Inspire Summer School. This can be a photo of something you have made, a picture you have drawn, some written work (e.g. the start of a speech, or the answer to a question we asked), or some thoughts you have about what you have learnt! Submit your work to us through this form.
All pupils who share their work with us by August 31 2021 will receive a certificate of participation in the summer school and will be entered into a prize draw! A £10 Amazon voucher will be awarded to each winning entry, selected randomly from all submissions. If you give us permission, your entry may be shared on Inspire Digital and our social media alongside your first name.