Category Archives: Exclusive Opportunities

Class of 2020: Leeds Exclusive Opportunities

NHS jobs Suzie Blog

One recurring theme (or worry) of job applications and interviews is how do I stand out? In the competitive world of job hunting, what is it that sets apart one graduate from another? Luckily, as a University of Leeds student, you are endowed with a range of schemes and opportunities that can make you uniquely employable – or at least grant a singular experience of personal development that you will cherish forever. Here’s a full breakdown of what’s on offer just for Leeds students.

NB During the current COVID-19 period, university programmes are subject to change. All information is correct at the time of publication, but check the websites for each programme you’re interested in for up-to-date information. 

Leeds Internship Programme

The Leeds Internship Programme is an opportunity for students to gain valuable work experience at local Small and Medium sized Enterprises (SMEs), charities and multi-national organisations. The experience can be conducted as a placement year, summer internship or even part-time term-time work. All of the opportunities organised by the LIP team in the Careers Centre are paid, located in the West Yorkshire area and (best of all) only offered to students at the University of Leeds! Sign up to their weekly newsletter via MyCareer.

Included in this scheme are Campus Internships. There are several part-time jobs available by the university every year, which intend to give you valuable experience of working for a large organization like UoL while earning some money on the side. There are vacancies in Digital Marketing, Graphic Design, Building Surveying, Student Ambassadorships and more. Check the University of Leeds vacancies page, where the positions will be clearly marked, and read a blog from Natalie who is currently participating in one of them.


Did you know that around a third of students intend to start their own business? The SPARK team can help you grow the seed of a business idea, and nurture your entrepreneurial spirit. They provide; access to grants and funding to help you get started; events and modules to help you learn about setting up and running a business; careers advice to help you make business decisions and mentoring from alumni. The team are also run a Business Plan Competition each year, which gives you the chance to win a £2000 grant towards establishing your innovative enterprise.

For info on how to get involved, visit their page.

Leeds to Cambodia

This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to undertake a challenging and rewarding project at a school in rural Cambodia. During July and August 2020 you will have the chance to make a positive and practical difference to the lives of other people as well as experience the extraordinary culture of Cambodia.  They need two Project Leaders and eight volunteers; Project Leaders will each receive a grant of £1000 and volunteers will receive £500 towards the costs of taking part e.g. flights and vaccinations.

Look out for applications opening again in December time.

Leeds to South Korea

Apply now to join our funded Leeds to South Korea Leadership Programme and develop your ability to lead from a truly global perspective. The programme gives you an immersive international experience, challenging you to adapt and thrive in a new context while establishing a genuinely global network. It equips you with the tools you need to lead change, now and in the future.

APPLY or contact

LinkedIn Learning access

All Careers Centre staff would recommend setting up a LinkedIn Account. It allows you to reflect on your experiences and skills, as well as discover job opportunities and connect with people in industry. (We’d recommend using the site’s alumni feature, where you can search for University of Leeds graduates and track their career path post-graduation).

But another great feature recently introduced is LinkedIn Learning, which offers over 15,000 short courses across business, creative and technical specialties. All students and staff have access to LinkedIn Learning through our institutional subscription. You do not need to have a LinkedIn account to access the content, but you can connect it to your own LinkedIn Account.

Go here for more info and to sign up using your Leeds Uni details. If you want to read more about LinkedIn Learning, we’ve got an in-depth blog post about it.

CSER8000 modules

If your department cannot offer you a work placement module in your third year, then this module (delivered by experienced staff at the Careers Centre) is set up for you. A work placement year is a great way to develop your skills and stand out to a graduate recruiter.

More info can be found on CareerWeb.

Mentoring Hub Schemes and The Leeds Network

The Careers Centre staff work tirelessly to establish connections with previous UoL students who have gone into interesting careers in a variety of industries. We then invite these alumni to participate in our eMentoring scheme; open to all undergraduates, the scheme pairs students with industry experts who can impart valuable knowledge and advice about professional post-university life.

Many of these alumni are also listed on the Leeds Network, accessible via Leeds For Life. This is a searchable directory of alumni from across the job market spectrum. You can specify result based on the subject you study, or the industry you would like to break into. Then, you can request to contact the alumnus to ask them questions and receive advice. This is a kind of unofficial eMentoring scheme.

Look out for other Mentoring schemes such as the PwC Female Mentoring Scheme for female students, the PwC Diversity Mentoring Scheme for BAME students (applications for both open in October 2020) and the Alumni Leadership Mentoring Programme, which features very high profile and senior mentors. Applications for this open in March.

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Filed under Advice, Class of 2020, Exclusive Opportunities, Networking, Work Experience

Laidlaw Undergraduate Research and Leadership Scholarship

Ghadir Ghasemi is a Laidlaw Scholar in the final year of his Chemical Engineering degree, find out how he has developed his research and leadership skills through this funded scholarship.

Laidlaw Scholarships are open to first year undergraduates, providing the opportunity to develop leadership and research skills through a range of personal development activities and two six week periods of project work.


How did you secure your scholarship?

I initially found out about this scholarship through an email from the Engineering Employability suite. I took the time to read all the information given about this  and was required to submit an initial application which consisted of four different questions-its main aims were to demonstrate my suitability to the proposed research project and to the scholarship as a whole, with regards to the leadership aspect.

The application process was very straightforward. Once I had sent my initial application, I was shortlisted to take part in an interview with the two project supervisors. The interview was not very long and the supervisors wanted to find out more about my passion for the project as well as the leadership aspect of the scholarship. Within a couple of hours, I received an email from the interviewers saying that I had been selected to receive the scholarship. Prior to sending my application, I attended an informative session which gave me tips and advice on how approach the interview. I also talked to staff at the employability office who helped me to prepare my application and subsequently practise for my interview.

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Link to Leeds Ambassadors

Link to Leeds Ambassadors support prospective students from overseas by sharing their experiences and insight into living and studying at the University of Leeds.  Learn more about the role from two ambassadors Anderson and Paulina.

Anderson Etika (left) from Nigeria recently completed his PhD in Transport Studies at the University of Leeds, he secured a post as a Link to Leeds Ambassador in his second year of study.


Paulina Pawlak (2nd on the right) from Poland is studying  an MEng in Applied Computer Science at the University of Leeds.


What is a Link to Leeds Ambassador?

Anderson: The role of a Link to Leeds Ambassador involves being a first point of contact for international students interested in studying at the University. As a student ambassador, I am an information point for prospective students (via instant messaging, emails, social media, chat events and campus and city wide tours). Through these mediums, I am able to share my experiences as a student and a resident of the city of Leeds. This includes sharing my experiences about accommodation, transportation, food in Leeds, scholarships availability, my research specific involvement and other issues faced day-to-day by students.   Also as part of the job, I am involved in events and activities such as; summer programmes, blog writing and other administrative tasks.

The benefits

Anderson: Being a Link to Leeds ambassador has been one of my most cherished experiences as a student at the University of Leeds. The job allowed me share my personal experiences at the university and the city of Leeds to prospective students. This was fulfilling for me as it gave me the opportunity to meet some amazing people, and I was able to assist them in my own little way.

Paulina: There are many benefits of being a Link to Leeds Ambassador the major one is sharing my excitement about University to prospective students – very often now I experience people randomly coming to me and telling me “Oh I was emailing you, you helped me so much!”. It gives me a feeling that my job really matters.

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