Category Archives: Advice

Advice on all things career related from a range of people, including careers staff, students & graduates, external organisations and other professionals.

How I got my job: Design Engineer at International Nuclear Services (INS)

Sean Perry

Sean Perry (centre)

Sean Perry graduated from Leeds with a Masters in Automotive Engineering in 2012. He now works as a Design Engineer for INS, a role he secured through the nucelargraduates scheme.  In this post he outlines how he got this job and shares his advice for other students and graduates.

The Role

Within INS I act as part of a team of engineers with specialist experience in the design and licencing of Transport Packages and supporting equipment that are used to transport radioactive material around the world. My day to day tasks include; producing 3D designs using CAD packages, transforming 3D CAD models to manufacturing drawings and performing structural calculations to substantiate the designs. Continue reading

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How I got a place on the NHS Scientist Training Programme 2017

11 July 2017.
University of Leeds alumni scholar Niamh Hall.Niamh Hall has just completed her BSc in Human Physiology at Leeds and successfully gained a place on this year’s NHS Scientist Training Programme.  In this post she shares her tips and advice for other students interested in this career.

If you are reading this it is most likely because you have an interest in science and healthcare. If so, you may have heard of the NHS Scientist training programme (STP) and you may have heard that it is extremely competitive. I am here to tell you that a first time applicant in their 3rd year with no year in industry or previous experience can apply and can be successful in obtaining a place on the programme. I’ve been asked to write this article to give an insight into what my job will entail and to give a few hints and tips to anyone thinking of applying in the future.

What is the STP?

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3 Ways to Stand Out When Applying for Graduate Jobs

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Photo from StockSnap

This week we’re discussing some simple steps you can take to stand out from the crowd when applying for graduate jobs/internships.

If you’re a soon-to-be graduate looking to give yourself nightmares, Stephen King has nothing on job hunting statistics. To snag any given graduate role, you’re going to have to fight off thirty-eight other applicants, and that number only rises if you’re applying for a particularly competitive industry or particularly prestigious employer.

Of course, some of these competitors may quickly rule themselves out of the running with low grades, sloppy professionalism or general incompetence. But many won’t. And while polishing your CV and honing your interview technique will certainly put you ahead of less dedicated job-seekers, it won’t elevate you above people as prepared as yourself.

Luckily, there are ways to stand out from even the most experienced, conscientious and competent crowd. Using the methods below won’t guarantee you a job, but it’ll definitely up your chances.

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All’s Fair in LUBS and Chores

Vincent pic

Business student, Hsiang-Hao Chen, offers some insight (and tips) into his experience of this year’s China Fair

The China Fair is a great opportunity for you to get exposed to potential employers and acquire experience interacting with them. Effectively and efficiently visiting booths and communicating with employer representatives is key to making the best use of the event. Here are some tactics for your reference. If you find them convincing enough, I would recommend you selectively using them, mixed with your own nature, and showing the unique aspects of you. Of course you want to behave properly but you also need to be different to stand out. When using these tactics, don’t forget to be yourself as well. Continue reading

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Why you should always target your CV

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Career Rock‘ by Louise Smith

This week Beth Leslie from Inspiring Interns is talking about why you should target your CV to the job and company you’re applying for and gives some useful tips on how to go about this.

Let’s be honest, job hunting is not fun. The path to that fulfilling and high-paying career of your dreams is strewn with obstacles, from all the other applicants you have to compete against, to the fact that some job openings never get advertised.

With opportunities scarce and competition fierce, many graduates are trying to up the odds by applying to every role they come across. They bung across the same CV and cover letter, cross their fingers… and get rejected 99% of the time.

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Tackling the Application Process & Being Open about a Disability: Part Two

disability

In part two of our ‘Tackling the Application Process & Being Open about Disabilities’ series, we are continuing the discussion on whether applicants should be open about their disability and what makes an application stand out.

Should I be open about my disability at the application stage?

It is your decision whether and when to be open about a disability and a careers adviser can help you to explore the pros and cons, so that you can make that decision. There are some exceptions, for example, if you have a condition like epilepsy that has health and safety implications – beyond these exceptions it is up to you.

A graduate I saw recently was advised by her friend not to be open about her disability on application forms. After numerous unsuccessful applications she decided to ignore this advice and successfully applied and got a great graduate job!

Take time to write a quality application

Research complete, you can now start writing your application. Written applications come in different formats, generally it is a covering letter and CV or an application form. Here are some general pointers:

  • Application form questions are generally based on your interest in the role and organisation (commitment), competencies (skills) and personal strengths (behaviours).
  • Have you researched the organisation thoroughly enough to address your interest in them and the role?
  • Examine the job description: what specific skills and attributes are they looking for?
  • Select recent and relevant competency examples from your university life and degree, extra-curricular activities and work experience. The ‘STAR’ approach here is an ideal way of articulating your skills.
  • Quality check your letter writing etiquette – how to structure and avoid minor mistakes that will put your application in the ‘no’ pile e.g. ending your letter ‘Yours faithfully’ when writing to a named person, grammar and spelling errors. Structure, format and write your CV succinctly. You can also check our website for more information and resources on applications.

Checking before pressing send is a must! If you have a disability that affects your written communication skills (spelling and grammar) have your application checked by someone else before sending and use all the resources at your disposal.

Resilience

This is now a commonly used term associated with being successful in the workplace and you will need more of this than other applicants (add link to resilience article). Legislation will support your path to employment but you cannot rely solely on it. Be persistent, curious and learn how to articulate your added value, abilities and diversity. In addition, make good use of disability services, your careers service and other support available to you.

Need further advice/guidance? Make sure to check out the resources available on our website and book an appointment to talk to us.

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How to impress at the Graduate Jobs & Internships Fair

Careers Fairs provide a fantastic opportunity for you to meet – and learn more about –  a whole range of employers, and further study opportunities, all in one place.

Our Spring Graduate Jobs & Internships Fair is taking place on 3rd May.  Full details available on the fair website.

This post provides tips to help you get the most from the fair.

Fair

Before the fair

Consider what you want from the fair: This should form the foundations of your planning and will shape how you approach the fair. Giving this some consideration beforehand means you are much more likely to find the fair useful.  For example, are you hoping to

  • Get answers to specific questions about a particular organisation?
  • Get advice on their selection processes?
  • Learn more about the organisation’s culture, or what their different opportunities involve?
  • Find out more about potential opportunities for the future?
  • Meet people doing the job roles in which you’re interested to get further insights?
  • Get inspiration about different types of opportunities or companies in which you may be interested (either now or in the future)?
  • Or something else?

Find out which organisations are going to be there:  And plan which you want to Continue reading

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