Hear from your peers who have achieved their PLUS Award!

With the Bristol PLUS Award deadline fast approaching in just over two weeks, noon Friday 7 June, we thought it a great opportunity to showcase the experiences of three PLUS Achievers from this year.

Yunfei, Katie, and Ana Lucia all spoke about their core experience of partaking in the PLUS Award at our Outstanding PLUS and PLUS Celebration event at the Bristol Beacon to a great reception from our audience. Not only was their skill development and pure passion for what they accomplished clear, but the authenticity in which they spoke speaks to their achievements.

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Outstanding PLUS Awards: Honourable Mentions 2023/24!

Text reads: The Outstanding PLUS Awards.

The Outstanding PLUS Awards (OPA) recognise those Bristol PLUS Achievers who have gone above and beyond within their PLUS Award activity, giving students an opportunity to articulate and reflect on their impact and personal development.  

This year we had 139 nominations across the eight categories, the highest in the history of the OPA. Though there can only be one winner per category, the judges were extremely impressed by the hard work and dedication of those shortlisted and decided to give several honourable mentions. 

Let’s meet these outstanding candidates and celebrate them for their achievements, motivation, and self-development.

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Working in partnership: Tutor the Nation and the Careers Service 

At the Careers Service we work in partnership with external organisations to bring a range of experiences to our students, and we like to think our brilliant students give a lot back too! 

Five women look excited and happy standing by a large screen with the Tutor the Nation logo on.

This year we have been working closely with Tutor the Nation, who have taken part in City Challenges and run mock interviews for our students as part of becoming an endorsing organisation for the Bristol PLUS Award. 

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Top tips for international students pursuing careers in the UK

Last month, we invited five international students and alumni from various sectors to share their successful experiences in securing graduate jobs in the UK.

Here are our five panellists and their top tips:

Megan Lim, LLB Bachelor of Law 

Megan is a current law student from Malaysia who has secured a training contract with Osborne Clarke and is also our PLUS Award Ambassador. She offers this advice to international students seeking jobs in the UK:

 “Don’t hesitate to ask for help at any stage of the application process. Seek assistance from your supervisors, the Career Service, friends, and family for application reviews, and practice interview questions.

Additionally, actively engage with employers, if possible, through LinkedIn and careers fairs. Don’t be afraid to ask them questions.”

Explore support on applications on the CVs, applications and interviews page of our website.


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Student Volunteering Week Panel Event: What can you achieve through volunteering?

In conjunction with Student Volunteering Week, the Bristol PLUS Award team held a panel event where a brilliant panel of student volunteers shed light on the holistic benefits of volunteering.

Looking to start volunteering but not sure how to get started? Dive into this blog to learn about the key takeaways from our panellists.

Our panellists included:

  • Aditya Verma – Socio-Legal Studies (MSc)
  • Dinara Shaimakhanova – Education (PhD) 
  • Charmaine Sew – International Social and Public Policy (BSc)
  • Rowan O’Clarey – Mathematics (MSci) 
  • Ione Howells – Environmental Policy and Management (MSc)
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Cheer to Career: How you can use My Skills to showcase your transferable skills

“From taking up cheerleading as a new sport in my first year of university, to becoming a competition team captain in my final year, my time with Bristol Jets Cheerleading Squad has developed my personal and professional skillset in ways I couldn’t have imagined.”

Meet Lia, a final-year Politics and Sociology (BSc) student and a Captain of the Bristol Jets Cheerleading Squad.

Below, Lia talks us through the skills she has learnt as Cheer Captain, how your extracurricular activities can translate into employability skills and the benefits of documenting them on My Skills to articulate how your experience is relevant to the job market.

“Taking up a leadership role in a sport society at university, as so many students do, has enabled me to develop a wide array of transferable skills that I will undoubtedly take with me on my career journey.

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Why nominate yourself for the Outstanding PLUS Awards? – from past winners and honourable mentions

The Outstanding PLUS Awards (OPA) are open to all Bristol PLUS Award achievers. It offers an opportunity to gain invaluable articulation skills and reflect further on your achievements, leaving you with a sense of pride.

To be eligible, you must be a 2023-24 PLUS Award achiever and nominate yourself by 12 noon Monday 25 March.

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Meet Lola Karpf: volunteer, advocate, and champion of LGBTQ+ friendly spaces

LGBTQ+ History Month aims to increase the visibility of LGBTQ+ people, their history and experiences.

It’s an opportunity to reflect on the progress that has been made for LGBTQ+ rights, whilst also recognising the barriers that still exist and the importance of continuing to fight for equality. 


We caught up with Lola Karpf, an Anthropology (MA) student who is currently completing the Bristol PLUS Award, to find out about the work she’s done to champion LGBTQ+ friendly spaces.

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How extracurricular activities helped me graduate into the music industry

David Simkins is a 2023 MA Music with Innovation graduate with a developing career in music and media.

Between working at a local record label alongside his studies, conducting student orchestras and scoring soundtracks for media projects, (including two feature films and a short film), being mentored by the Head of Marketing at Sony Music’s Columbia Records and interning at SoundCloud, David (pictured right) has been busy in the past 4 years!

Drawing on his experience with soundtracks, tech, and client management, David is pursuing a music career in creative sync and marketing while working to improve industry transparency, education, and inclusivity, especially for the LGBTQIA+ community.

We caught up with David about how his extracurricular activities throughout his degree helped him get to where he is:

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