Now, in your first year, is an ideal time to start thinking ahead, if you want to work in any high-quality, well-paid graduate job after your degree. The graduate training schemes with the Times Top 100 Employers are extremely competitive, and to land one of those positions, employers typically look for a 2:1 and relevant work experience. Smaller employers tend to place less emphasis on the grade, but will look for work experience.
Placements and internships tend to be regarded as the gold standard of work experience, as these provide opportunities to work on live projects and tend to offer high quality training. In addition, many employers use internships and placements as part of their graduate recruitment strategy and often tend to offer graduate jobs or fast tracks to assessment centres or final interviews for around 70%.
Insight and Spring Week programmes tend to be offered predominantly to Year 1 students, and internships and placements mostly for Year 2 or penultimate year students. In some sectors, especially banking, getting an insight scheme is almost essential if you want a summer internship, placement year or graduate role in the future. Insight schemes are advertised between September and December so look out for these the moment you start your course.
Job Shop – University of Kent
Information about different types of work experience and further resources
Target Jobs https://targetjobs.co.uk/internships
Insight Days for first year students
You may also like to know that many of the larger employers (accountancy/finance businesses, investment banks, FMCGs and management consultancies) offer Insight Days or Insight Programmes for Year 1 to provide some insights into these career areas.
These events are typically one or two days at the companies’ premises, often during the Easter holidays. Be aware – sign-up dates are very early, often at the latest end December/January. These are advertised on the companies’ own websites and through the usual graduate recruitment sites, or simply google Career Insight Days.
Deadlines for vary from November/December to January – apply early!
- Ratemyplacement – https://www.ratemyplacement.co.uk/insights
- e4s – http://www.e4s.co.uk/internship-jobs/first-year-internships.htm
- Target Jobs Insight weeks in investment banking
Diversity Programmes offering insights and training
SEO London prepare talented students from ethnic minority or low socioeconomic backgrounds for career success.
Rare Recruitment Leaders in diversity graduate recruitment
Employers who have advertised schemes for Year 1 students:
Bank of America Merrill Lynch
Bank of England
Walt Disney World Resort