Employers look to recruit staff with the right combination of skills, experience and specialised knowledge. You will be at a major advantage when applying for a job, whatever course you are studying, if you have experience of a work environment.
As well as helping our students to find part-time or voluntary work whilst studying (see: GET Hired), there are opportunities to gain valuable work experience on most of our courses.
Depending on your course, the work experience could be anything from one day a week to an entire year’s placement, working full-time.
Employability Tutors will suggest employers for work experience (taking into account your level of skills and knowledge), depending on your course and will place you with an appropriate employer to complete your mandatory practical course requirements.
The rewards of work experience
University College Birmingham can help you achieve your goals by getting the most out of work experience. The benefits include:
- Gaining practical experience in the industry you wish to work in, building your self-esteem, initiative and independence and learning about career pathways
- Achieving higher grades on your course because the workplace skills and knowledge you gain can be applied to your studies
- The possibility of a job offer when you graduate if you perform well on a placement
- Improving your job opportunities because employers like to see work experience on CVs and will be more likely to consider you for a position
- Working as part of a team
Work experience case studies
View more video case studies on our YouTube channel.
Cook your way round the world
Reece Dunne extended his culinary skills and picked up invaluable work experience by swapping his studies in Birmingham for the heat of the Gulf.
Reece, who progressed to Culinary Arts Management after a three-year Professional Cookery course, did a six-month stint at the luxury St Regis Saadiyat Island Resort in Abu Dhabi.
He also found time to get some primetime TV exposure, working with Michel Roux Jr on BBC-2’s The Chef's Protégé
"My work experience was invaluable and really prepared me for the world of work."
Have a whale of a time
UCB students can take advantage of paid work experience with The Atlantic Whale Foundation (AWF) in the Canary Islands.
All flights and costs, including accommodation, are covered for the two to six-week placements in sun-splashed Tenerife.
Students live in a traditional island farmhouse and are based at the AWF research station in Arona.
Duties involve analysing and interpreting data, acting as research guides on the whale watching boats and assisting at the Whale and Dolphin Information Centre in Puerto Colon.
The information centre is a hub for marine mammal projects across the world, looking at conservation, education and research.
To find out more, visit us in the hired@UCB suite on the 7th floor of Summer Row, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
"I came to UCB for one week's work experience in the Hired team. It's been my first experience of working in an office and I've enjoyed it. I've been dealing with data and have proved myself to be trustworthy and reliable. I've also learnt to use a photocopier, which might sound like a small thing, but it's been useful for me!"