Applying to your first role after university can be very challenging. After years of school experience and building your CV, students and graduates quickly realise just how competitive the employment market is and just how many other students are competing for the same roles. While degrees and qualifications are extremely important to be considered, they are often the minimum requirement. Beyond these, employers look immediately to any prior professional experience.
Unfortunately, with studies taking up so much time, it can be difficult finding work experience, particularly any paid employment. This is why many students abroad work in restaurants, cafes and bars - they get a decent pay to support their travels, but unfortunately, few employers look favourably on this experience for more business-related work.
If you would like to study and develop your career in the United Kingdom, then please fill out the form at the bottom of the page.
University of Roehampton's campus
Many business-related workplaces offer work experience, but it is frequently underpaid (or not paid at all) and for the biggest businesses, competition for those places can be fierce.
That is part of what makes the courses offered at these universities are so valuable - they not only teach skills that companies based in the United Kingdom are looking for in staff, but also how to get work experience in the UK.
For example, the Roehampton Business School offers all students the option to apply for a one-year paid work placement (undergraduate), also known as a ‘sandwich year’ and for postgraduate they have a global leadership program designed to enhance career-readiness. It’s focus is on personal professional development through a combination of events, workshops, networking opportunities and industry exposure that address career-readiness, and students capabilities to act as an effective leader, manager, consultant or entrepreneur.
The sandwich year can be an excellent option as it provides a wealth of essential experience when it comes to finding your first job, while it can also be a good opportunity to discover more closely what it is you would like to do for a career. The sandwich year differs to a traditional work placement in that the sandwich year is ‘thicker’- simply longer.
Northumbria's London campus
In addition, Northumbria’s London Campus and Ulster University’s Birmingham and London campuses offer students at Masters Level the option to take a module called “Advanced Practice”.
Advanced Practice is a 12 to 15-week Internship & Professional Development Project or Applied Consulting Project incorporated into the standard business Masters Programmes offered at Ulster. Students undertaking an internship will experience a workplace environment produce reflective reports and take part in a project where they can apply previously learned theoretical concepts to a real-life industry issue. Students keen to take on the applied consulting project will gain experience working with clients, sticking to budgets and deadlines, carrying out research and delivering consultancy on a previously identified issue.
This means the University gives students the opportunity to work with a real organisation on live business problems. Whilst this undoubtedly means students will gain invaluable experience, it is important to note that the internship may be paid or unpaid and is sourced through the students themselves or the in-house careers team.
Solent University offers postgraduate courses with one-year placement option. Through their enterprises, students can get involved with video production, retail, or even work with professional athletes to gain valuable real-world experience alongside their degree studies. For example, The Retail Solent Initiative allows students to gain valuable experience as part of their work based learning element of the course. This unique retail store is run by Solent students and sells clothing, accessories, art and other items designed by Solent students and graduates.
Universities and Courses Across the United Kingdom
Each of these British universities are industry-focused and have excellent employability percentages.
Northumbria University delivers courses at both their London City Campus and Pathway programmes at the Newcastle main campus. The London Campus offers industry-focused Business, Computing, IT and Project Management courses amid the buzz of London’s business and financial district.
In Newcastle, the fully-embedded Pathway provision enables students to develop their English language and academic skills on programmes that are specifically tailored to their chosen target subject area.
Northumbria University has over 210,000 alumni across more than 160 countries worldwide, and 94.7% of Northumbria graduates are in employment or further study within six months of graduating.
Ulster University’s London and Birmingham branch campuses are delivered offer undergraduate and postgraduate degrees in business and computing subjects in professional learning environments. Ulster’s focus is to ensure graduates don’t just have a degree, but are highly employable and motivated individuals ready to function in a dynamic business environment.
There are 190,000 members in the University’s Global Alumni network and 94% of Ulster graduates either work or continue their studies within six months after graduation.
Solent University delivers a range of programmes from foundation to undergraduate level, some of which have an option for a work placement.
The Pre-Sessional and International Foundation Programme pathways are designed to help students from around the world improve their academic and English language skills before undertaking undergraduate or postgraduate degree studies with Solent University.
93.9% of Solent graduates are in work/further study after graduating.
University of Roehampton
At the University of Roehampton, there are pathway programmes delivered at the University’s London Campus for students who need additional support to meet the entry requirements for undergraduate and postgraduate degrees with Roehampton. The University also delivers undergraduate 3 and 4 year degrees at additional locations within London, Birmingham and Manchester.
For certain business programmes, Roehampton offers a sandwich year in which students can take a paid placement year: invaluable experience for one’s career.
92% of Roehampton graduates find themselves in either employment or further study within six months of graduation.
With the British Government recently amending the rules for international students and now allowing foreign graduates two years to stay in the United Kingdom and find a job, there is no better time to study in the UK. The change applies to international students in the UK who start courses at the undergraduate level or above from next year. For more information, please read this BBC news article.
QA is a group that helps students develop their employability in Britain, particularly in the professional sphere. They work with partner universities in the UK to deliver industry-focused courses for students to develop key employability skills, resulting in accomplished graduates who are motivated and highly employable.
If you would like to study and develop your career in the United Kingdom, or learn more about the scholarship options you have available, then get in contact with QA via the form below.