In the next instalment of our ‘Meet our staff’ series, we talk to one of our Careers Consultants Venita Girvan about her role at the Careers Centre.
What is your job at the Careers Centre and what does it involve?
I’m a Careers Consultant and this role involves lots of different aspects. This includes teaching and assessing on careers modules, 1 to 1 guidance with students, developing and delivering careers workshops both at the Careers Centre and in faculties, working with employers by hosting their events at the Careers Centre or attending their careers days. I am also a Placement Tutor for students taking the Careers Centre work placement module. As well as this I co-manage the Careers Centre blog and I am a part of the social media team contributing to our Facebook and Twitter pages.
What’s the best thing about your job?
This would definitely be the opportunity to work with so many different students – lots of them have got some great experiences and have done so many wonderful things. It is a privilege to be able to work with students and help them on their career journey. Also as my job is so varied, no two days are the same and this variety is something that I really like.
What skills are important for your job?
Definitely communication skills as I am in contact with lots of different individuals, for example, when delivering workshops, teaching on modules and in 1 to 1 sessions with students and graduates. Therefore my interpersonal skills are also important. As there are lots of different elements to my job, it is essential that I am well organised to ensure everything is completed correctly and on time. Using my initiative is also important to come up with new ideas and in busy periods when you sometimes have to think quickly about what to do.
What training or previous experience do you have that has helped you in your current role?
I completed my Postgraduate Diploma in Careers Guidance in 2010 and I went on to work in a training organisation which involved providing careers advice to individuals, including graduates, who were on government funded training programmes. I then moved on from this to working here at Leeds.
What top tips would you have for students and graduates?
Make the most of your time at University – there is so much on offer here at Leeds and anything you get involved with will help you to develop your experiences and skills. If you think you would like to go into a specific career area, try it out with work experience or volunteering to see what it’s like. Explore the options available to you and if you’re not sure what to do, the Careers Centre is here to help!