Work experience comes in many different forms – from the part-time bar or shop job (don’t knock it – as well as money in your pocket, it’s teamwork and customer service skills on your CV), to the summer internship or even full-year placement with a Top 100 employer (the best single thing you can do to boost your chances of a graduate job with this type of company). And various points between – volunteering, work-shadowing, a vacation job in a related field, a work-related course project or dissertation.
All of these can benefit your career planning and employability, in various ways:
· a chance to try out an employer and see if you’re suited to each other
· a chance to experience a career area to find out what it’s really like
· relevant and current experience on your CV
· specific examples to talk about in applications and interviews
· a chance to develop skills and knowledge relevant to your chosen career
· an opportunity to start building a network of contacts
· a chance to put into practice what you’re learning at university
· the other way round, a chance to bring a workplace perspective to your studies
If you’re an intermediate year student in the Faculty of Social Sciences, we’re running a workshop on Finding Work Experience, on Thursday 28 November, 3.15 – 4.45pm, at 301 Student Skills and Development Centre, room B1. This will look at ways of looking for and applying for work experience, and how to get the most from it.
The workshop is primarily aimed at UK undergraduates from “non-traditional” backgrounds – that could be mature students, students from schools or neighbourhoods traditionally under-represented in higher education, the first generation of their family to go to university, students with non A Level entry qualifications, students receiving a full living cost grant.
If you’re interested, sign up here, or just come along on the day.
If you’re in another faculty, or in your first year, or in your final year, there’s also a lot of help available for finding work experience. See the Careers Service website, the myVacancies database, call in at the Student Jobshop, or make an appointment to see a careers adviser. Or, if you’re from a “non-traditional” background (see previous paragraph), email email@example.com to arrange an appointment to discuss your plans.