Are you considering a PhD?

With most PhDs spanning 3 to 4 years, it is not a decision to take lightly.

For some students, their passion for research and a specific academic discipline is such that a PhD is an obvious choice as part of their career planning, however, for others it is just one possible option, prompting further questions.

Having an insight into what life is like as a post-graduate researcher is a crucial first step. Without any doubt, you will need to love learning, have a hunger for research, and be a self-starter happy to work for long periods independently. Advice from vitae.ac.uk is to be ‘really clear on your motivations for doing a doctorate, and that it [will be] a positive career step.’

Kayleigh Crouch is a Career Peer Support Adviser with the Careers Service, currently a PGR at the University of Bristol, and has shared her insights on what it’s like to be a doctoral researcher here:

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How to get into Finance: Top Tips

Finance careers include key areas of banking, financial accounting, financial planning, insurance, investments, pensions, real estate, sustainability and fintech.  You could find yourself in a multinational corporation, a small or medium sized business or enterprise (SME), or even a microbusiness or start-up enterprise.

Some recent University of Bristol graduates have gone into graduate roles in this sector as Financial Analysts, Tax Associates, Financial Planners, Risk Analysts, Financial Consultants and Investment Bankers, to name a few.

As a taster, here we draw together some top tips from our careers panel event on ‘How to get into Finance’ for Social Science and Law students on 25 October 2022. (more…)

Is a graduate scheme right for me? Pros, cons, and FAQs.

To grad scheme, or not to grad scheme; a question many of us have asked. Differing from graduate jobs, graduate schemes are training programmes run by large companies, offering a body of graduates a firm foothold in an industry. Keep reading to see if a grad scheme is suited to you and get application tips.

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Want a job in the UK? 6 tips for international students

Picture of Zubair Khan
Zubair Khan, Year 2 Accounting and Finance (BSc)

We recently held a panel event of international alumni working in the UK attended by:

  • Natalie Ng has a Master’s in Accounting, Finance, and Management and is now an Equity Rewards Advisory Tax Associate at Grant Thornton
  • Tony Zhang has an MEng in Computer Science and is an Agile Business Analyst at HSBC
  • Fei Jin has an MA in Film and Television and is a video photographer and editor at New Silk Route
  • Emelyn Shu Fang Tan has a degree in Law and is a Student Inclusion Intern at the University of Bristol

 

“Getting a job in the UK can seem daunting to international students. However, all you need to do to find your dream job in the UK is make an extra effort to stand out to employers”

Here are Zubair’s top take aways from the event: (more…)

Why I’m choosing teaching as a career

Ethan Osborn-Clarke is a final year Geography BSc student planning to teach Geography in secondary schools in London once he graduates, following the Teach First pathway.  Other options for getting into teaching exist too – see links further down for details.  We caught up with Ethan to discuss why he’s choosing this career path.

 

Teaching is a popular career choice for many graduates, for various reasons: job satisfaction, security, or to inspire the next generation.

There are many reasons I‘m going into teaching – all confirmed by my primary and secondary observation days and too numerous to go through individually. To try and summarise, I’ve put them into four main areas: fulfilment, differentiation, progression and challenge, giving a glimpse into my rationale for going into teaching.

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Last chance to apply for the Ideas stage of the New Enterprise Competition!

The Ideas stage for the New Enterprise Competition is open for applications for another week. For the opportunity to test out your idea by pitching to us and to win up to £200 in equity free funding, what have you got to lose? 

 

We caught up with Shabaj, who created the Success Program, a sports journaling app, which was awarded  funding from the Ideas stage of the Competition last year. 

 

In a nutshell, what is your start-up idea and where did the idea come from?

I’m working on a sports journaling app that allows individuals to track their weightlifting performance and provides customers with a quantitative measure of how their training programme is impacting their performance. Having our customers reflect on what they achieved on their last workout allows them to compete against themselves from one workout to the next.  

The aim of the game is progression, but how can you know if you are progressing if you aren’t tracking your results?

I’m not the strongest person in the gym, by far. Often, if I push myself more than I am physically capable of and I get an injury. I got tired of repeating the same mistake and started to record my workouts in a notebook. However, I got fed up with flicking through the pages to find what weights, reps and sets I should do. I also lost more pens in the gym than most students do in three years at university. So I decided to build an app to think and carry less in the gym.

 

Have you always been interested in entrepreneurship? What inspired you to get into it?

I let my curiosity direct where I put my attention- which has its own set of pros and cons! My journey into entrepreneurship is more self-centred than most. From the projects I worked on, I always had a personal connection with problem I was trying to solve. Since I couldn’t find a product or service that met my needs, I would find out how I can create my own solution. If I have that problem, someone else might too.

Picture of Shabaj who founded the Success Program
Shabaj, founder of The Success Program

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Graduate scheme or graduate job? The many different paths to graduate roles

Illustration of a person sitting at their desk in front of a computer with a coffee, looking relaxed
Image by Elf-Moondance from Pixabay

You’ve heard of grad schemes, but did you know that there’s a difference between a graduate scheme and a graduate job? How do you know if a grad scheme is actually the right option for you?

Read on to find out more about schemes, internships, and how to secure an amazing graduate job.

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CPSA Case Study: Sourcing your own SME Internship

As a final year BSc Psychology student, I wanted to use this year to develop my skills and experience so that I would be in a strong position to apply for graduate jobs. After taking a course on drugs and addiction as part of my degree, I realized that I felt passionate about this subject.

Paula Mesia Guevara, Career Peer Support Assistant and Final Year BSc Psychology student

I decided that I wanted to look for an internship in a related role, to help me to decide if I would enjoy working in this field. However, I was not finding many advertised opportunities for the kinds of internships I was interested in.

Through the Careers Service website I learned that students could source their own internships through the university’s SME internship scheme. (more…)

CPSA case study: Bouncing back from rejections

Yun Wen Soh, Final year LLB Student and Career Peer Support Assistant

Thank you for your application for [job name] at [company].

However, after careful consideration we regret to inform you that you have not been successful…”

Emails like this are almost inevitable during your job search. Despite knowing that “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger”, receiving rejections can feel crushing.

 

 

Here are some practical tips to get out of the rejection rut … (more…)