#10YearsOfPLUS: A decade of devotion to employability.

We are getting a little nostalgic as we draw closer to the end of the PLUS Award’s 10th anniversary year  (just under 6 weeks to go!) We are so proud of all the achievers, past and present. 

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The PLUS Award has certainly grown and evolved in the past decade; In its pilot year, 165 students achieved the PLUS Award, since then over 5,000 students have achieved it. Another 800 have finished so far this yearpersevering to bag their Award despite changing circumstances! (more…)

COVID-19 SME Internship Fund

We have launched a new internship fund to provide paid work experience of 4 weeks within Bristol-based small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs).  

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Chambers of Commerce: the successful job hunter’s best kept secret

What are Chambers of Commerce?

Chambers of Commerce are membership organisations which businesses can join to access services to help them grow and play a part in their local business community. They exist around the world at the local, regional and national level. Bristol Chamber of Commerce is run by Business West. You can easily find Chambers for your nearest home town or city, or home country, by searching online. For example, “[name of city] Chamber of Commerce.”

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Sport and employability: the perfect team

Are you a Student Leader, volunteer or coach in one of Bristol SU’s Sporting groups and societies? 

According to Public Health England, students “with better health and wellbeing are likely to achieve better academically” So not only does being part of a sporting group or society increase those endorphins, connect you with people and develop valuable skills, it can help you succeed! This topic is brilliantly explored in the recent Wonkhe blog: “Demonstrating the link between sports and student success 

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Ways to develop your skills and employability from home

In recent weeks the situation in the UK has been changing almost daily with the most recent advice being that we stay at home. Many of you would have been due to start internships and work experience opportunities over the Easter and summer breaks, which now might have been cancelled as a result of COVID-19. While this is really disappointing for you, the good news is, there are loads of online opportunities to get involved with and develop your skills!

The Engagement Opportunities Team have pulled together some remote and online-based opportunities that you can still get involved with. (more…)

Help! What are my strengths?

Ask someone what their strengths are and it’s likely they’ll give you a fair imitation of a rabbit caught in headlights. Although we know ourselves better than anyone, it’s not always easy to identify exactly what makes us special.  Employers will often ask you about your strengths at interview. To avoid responding with a glassy-eyed stare, you need to first get clear about what yours are, and then understand how best to articulate them.

So, what ARE my strengths?
A common interview question is, “how would a good friend describe you in three words?” Prepare for this by asking a friend ahead of time! (You can always return the favour). We ran an exercise a bit like this recently at the Careers Service. We all drew a representation of ourselves on a piece of A4 paper (it quickly emerged that most of us couldn’t list artistic talent amongst our finer qualities). Then we moved around adding words to the pictures. Where we agreed with a word someone had already written, we put a big tick against it.

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It’s the start of Student Volunteering Week today!

Student Volunteering Week is a national event, with Higher and Further Education Institutions across the country using the week to celebrate existing student volunteers and to encourage more students to start volunteering.

This is the 19th year that Student Volunteering Week is taking place, but student volunteering has a long and rich history dating back to university missions in the 19th century and support for the unemployed in the interwar period.  If you’re interested in finding out more about the history of student volunteering, check out this video

Student Volunteering – a short history from adifferentdrumproductions on Vimeo.

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Volunteering and the Bristol PLUS Award proves a powerful combination

There are so many reasons for volunteering and when you pair it with the Bristol PLUS Award the value gained can really pack a punch!

To help us prepare for Student Volunteering Week we caught up with Bristol PLUS Award completer, Joshua Ang, to hear more about how he paired his volunteering and the Bristol PLUS Award.

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Broaden your horizons with the Bristol Futures Open Online Courses

The next run of the Open Online Courses starts on Monday 10 February, and don’t worry – there’s still time to sign up 

The three courses: Global Citizenship, Innovation and Enterpriseand Sustainable Futures are hosted on the online platform FutureLearn and are a fantastic way to expand your learning, develop your skills and share your knowledge with learners across the world. 

To help you make the most of the courses, the University of Bristol employs students to work as online mentors. Lots of these mentors have been with us since the courses launched, so we’ve asked a couple of them about what is that they enjoy about the Bristol Futures Open Online Courses 

Issy – Global Citizenship course mentor 

What has been the most enjoyable element of working as a Bristol Futures Open Online Course Mentor? 

I have worked as a Bristol Futures online mentor for three runs now on the ‘Global Citizenship’ course. I really enjoy the flexibility of this course, you can join in whenever you like during the week, talk to other learners or just read and soak it all in. The course is free so is very little pressure and you work at your own pace. The course content is also really interesting, presented in a user-friendly way with short informative videos, interactive quizzes and a comments section where you can input answers to some open questions that each module provides.  (more…)