The Bristol PLUS Award offers you the perfect platform to challenge yourself to develop new skills. But did you know it gives you recognition for the activities that you are already doing too?
That’s right! As PLUS Award achiever Valeria Saddi explains, “at the beginning of my second year I decided I wanted to challenge myself more. I was already working part time, and I realised that by doing the PLUS Award I could get recognition for the hours of work I was putting in, as well as learning something new and boosting my employability skills.”
What is myopportunities?
myopportunities is a portal that empowers you to explore opportunities outside of your formal curriculum.
Develop your interests, enhance your skills and apply your learning today by signing up for an engagement opportunity!
This could be a one-off volunteering activity in Bristol, a month-long internship abroad, an online course or a hackathon.
myopportunities lists opportunities from across the university and the wider community. The list is endless, so why not find an opportunity that suits you and begin learning differently today? Visit us online: myopportunities.
Amelia Morfitt, who is starting her final year of her degree in Psychology in Education, completed the Bristol PLUS Award during her second year. We asked her a few questions about her experience and why she would recommend it to other students…
Why did you choose to do the Bristol PLUS Award?
I chose to complete the PLUS Award because I already had a part-time job whilst I was at university, and I thought that it was a great opportunity to gain some further skills and experience, get more involved in activities at university that weren’t course-related, and to obtain an award that would also boost my CV! (more…)
Student leader roles consistently make up around 30% of the intensive skills submissions on the Bristol PLUS Award and the impact this leadership experience has on students can be extremely far-reaching, both personally and professionally. The 2015-16 Outstanding Award projects reflected this benefit, showcasing the significant contributions from students in their SU roles as senior residents, society presidents, volunteers and fundraisers.
Faye Leneghan used her role as 2015-16 Station Manager of Burst Radio to achieve the Award in her final year at the University of Bristol. When asked before graduating ‘what are your career goals?’ she responded:
“I’m looking to gain a career in broadcast journalism, production or PR/Communications. With the help of the Outstanding Award I have upcoming interviews for an internship with Global Radio and the Houses of Parliament!”
We recently caught up with Faye after several years in industry to see how the experience and skills gained through taking part in the Outstanding Award have helped her career take off.
Student leader roles consistently make up around 30% of the intensive skills submissions on the Bristol PLUS Award, and the impact this leadership experience has on students can be extremely far-reaching, both personally and professionally. In 2017-18 we had a record number of student leaders apply for the Outstanding Award, with 50% of applicants articulating the significant contribution they’d made within their Student Union roles.
One of these students was Hari, the 2016-17 Chair of Bristol RAG. We caught up with him after graduation to see how the Outstanding Award experience had helped him get to where he is now.
Did you complete the Bristol PLUS or Outstanding Award as part of your university experience?
If so, we want to invite you to help us celebrate the ten year anniversary of the Awards!
The Bristol PLUS Award started in 2009 as a way to reward students for developing extracurricular skills and experiences alongside their degrees, and help them articulate the value of that experience to employers. In ten years, the premise of the Award has not changed, though it has evolved in response to student feedback, university projects and labour market developments, to ensure that the Award remains credible and beneficial to every student who dedicates themselves to achieve it.
Here are just a few highlights:
The Bristol PLUS Award deadline is approaching on June 14. If you are close to completing the Award or are one of the hundreds who have completed in the past few years, you may want to reflect on how you could progress to the Outstanding Award. Adam Jellett, a Biochemistry (PhD) student explains how completing both awards supported his career planning.
How did you come to achieve the Outstanding Award?
PhD students can get tunnel vision of only considering an academic career, and there is even some stigma around considering other options. This is ridiculous – what will suit one person will not necessarily suit others! Part of the problem is that the main mentors available for PhD students are academics, who may not have experiences outside of a University setting. I have genuinely enjoyed my Biochemistry PhD and have no regrets but have come to realise that I personally would be better off pursuing a different path. Even if you do think academia is for you, there is no harm (and likely a lot of good) in considering and preparing for wider options. (more…)
Last academic year, a record 50 students applied for the Outstanding Award. Christy Howarth Nunns received a distinction, and below tells us about his project and the benefits of doing the Outstanding Award.
What activity did you do for your Outstanding Award?
For two years I was the president of the University of Bristol Physics Society, ‘Chaos’. As my chosen award theme was ’Innovation and Enterprise‘, the main focus of my submission was the way I transformed Chaos by shifting our business model away from simply breaking even on all our events. My initiatives to increase cashflow, included sourcing sponsorship, allowed the society to thrive, and run more activities than ever before. The following year Chaos won ‘Best Academic and Careers Society’ among other awards!
Bristol Futures open online courses are now an essential element of the Bristol PLUS Award. With their broad range of topics and interactive learning style, it’s hardly surprising that they are receiving great reviews – but who is doing what, and which might you do?
It’s a common misconception that the Careers Service is only for those students who already know exactly what they want to do. Similarly, when it comes to the Bristol PLUS Award you might guess that it’s only for very high-achieving students, or those who are applying for grad schemes and internships.
If you’ve completed the PLUS Award, you’ll know that this isn’t true of the Careers Service, and certainly isn’t true of the Award itself.
Student priorities when registering for the Bristol PLUS Award