Short term work experience over the summer

August 7, 2012

There are still some short term vacancies for over the summer, so if you don’t yet have any work experience sorted yet, then check out what is still available and apply before it is too late! Work experience of even a few weeks can give you an opportunity to develop your skills for both continuing your degree studies and preparing you for a job after your course.

Some companies offer up to four week placements or even part time work, which in some cases is longer term and could fit around your studies. Look through a variety of sources including local newspapers, job websites, through your own contacts or contacting employers direct, as well as firstly checking vacancies on the University’s CareersLink website.

One example of a current summer internship for undergraduates is:

Journalist Student Internship with the Red Army on CareersLink, Ref: 14089.

There are 10 part time Journalist positions available. This role needs interns who are inquisitive, excellent at writing for magazines and the web, relating with all kinds of different people, as well as having a cool head under pressure and absorbing information quickly. As the Red Army is a publication for Manchester United, it is important for this role to have an interest in the football club and football in general.

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3 Simple, Stress-Free Ways to Get Ahead!

December 22, 2011

Now deadlines have past, and with the Christmas break, everyone including myself must be feeling like this:

The best thing you can do now is breathe, step back and relax. I have realised you can do this and still be productive. Here I have compiled 3 little things you could do to get the most out of the break, before revision kicks in:

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Transferable What?

April 8, 2011

Dean Webster (Student Blogger)

I’ll start this blog post just like I started the last one: with an apology. Sorry I haven’t written in so long, but I honestly haven’t given careers much thought, let alone this careers blog. I’ve been so busy with uni work: writing lab reports; writing a dissertation; revising for exams and procrastinating (a necessary part of revision), that I’ve forgotten that the whole point of this degree is to get a career! Whoops.

However, I have been adding to my employability, and this is (sort of) what this blog entry is about.
“Transferable Skills”

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What is commercial awareness and how can I get it?

October 27, 2010

Graduate employers always seem to be asking for commercial awareness skills, and students often ask me “What is commercial awareness and how can I get it?” Fortunately, there’s a great section on commercial awareness on the careers website, which explains what it is all about and includes links to online games which test and develop this skill (and some of these are actually more fun than you might think!).

So what is it?

The definition most often used is by Christopher Stoakes in his book ‘All You Need to Know About Commercial Awareness’:

“At heart, commercial awareness is about being able to talk to clients, finding out what they want, why they want it, what they will do with it and what they are prepared to pay, and then Read the rest of this entry »

Getting a job when you haven’t had any experience (Part I)

December 12, 2008

It’s a question we get asked a lot. When you haven’t had previous experience, how do you get a job (possibly your first job) when employers are looking for skills and some relevant knowledge? This obstacle can appear not only when applying for full time jobs, but also for some placements and internships in competitive sectors, or even part-time work. This can seem an unreasonable stumbling block, but there are things you can do to bridge this gap. So where do you start?

With this post we will look at what to do if you have no previous work experience at all. In the next few weeks we will look at other kinds of situation so hopefully you will find something that applies to you.

  1. What have you done already?
    Start building a CV from things you have done. If you have had positions of responsibility, at school or University, are involved in sports or other hobbies which you have invested considerable time and effort in, or have been involved in student societies, these are all great for showing skills. See our guide to making job applications for some advice on demonstrating your skills.
  2. Transferable skills from your degree
    Show how you have developed transferable skills from your programme of study. These skills are useful even if your degree is not relevant to the job. If you have to work in Problem Based Learning or case study groups, that means team working and problem solving. If you have to do presentations, that develops communication skills. A dissertation project could show analytical ability and possibly even project management. But if you don’t mention them, the recruiter probably won’t guess that you have these.
  3. Apply for part-time work
    Part-time jobs add experience to your CV as some part-time employers do not require previous experience. Even if the job is not related to the career you end up in, this kind of work can be great at building up transferable skills of team working, communication skills, organisation and time management, all of which are useful for nearly any job.
  4. Undertake voluntary work
    Even a couple of hours a week can start building your CV, and again you normally won’t need to show you have previous experience. As with part-time work you can develop your skills and you can support a good cause at the same time. Our Manchester Student Volunteers service can help you find voluntary work, and also try

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