March 22, 2022, by Leonie Farrar
Searching for Graduate Schemes
By Leonie Farrar, religion, philosophy, and ethics student blogger
If you are in your final or penultimate year, like me, you have probably started or are about to start your search for graduate schemes. This can be daunting and stressful. Especially trying to find time to search for graduate schemes alongside doing your university work. Here are a few tips on how to get started with your search and what you can do to make your search easier and less time-consuming.
Before starting your search
You need to know what you’re looking for
This doesn’t mean you need to know the exact job role you want. For me, I thought about the general areas I am interested in. For example, I focused on looking into graduate schemes in marketing. Although it is useful to have a focus in your search, it is important to still keep an open mind. There are many options out there, many of which you may not have heard of before. If something catches your eye which isn’t what you were looking for, still check it out!
The location of graduate schemes was also something I considered before starting my search. There are lots of location options for graduate schemes. Some are based abroad and some involve multiple relocations throughout the scheme. What would you be open to? Is there a certain location you want to work in or would you be happy to move anywhere in the UK? Or globally? Due to other commitments, it was important to me to limit my search to the East Midlands. Knowing this from the start meant I could filter my searches which saved me time.
Tips on finding graduate schemes
1. Career websites – The first thing I did when starting to look for graduate schemes was to search using various career-related websites such as Prospects. The Careers team’s MyCareer, jobs board, advertises vacancies from employers interested in recruiting Nottingham students and graduates – simply log in with your university username and password. I also signed up for email alerts on new jobs similar to my searches. This was really useful because I could focus on studying instead of spending too long repeatedly searching career websites.
2. Business career pages – You can also find graduate schemes by going directly to the careers pages of businesses you’re interested in. If you’re looking for a specific location, like I am, it’s useful to research the businesses based in that area. However, looking into each business in the area is impossible and would be very time-consuming. Instead, I focused on businesses that worked in my interest areas. As well as big businesses which I thought would be more likely to offer graduate schemes.
3. Save webpages – I looked at so many different graduate schemes that it would have been impossible to remember which ones I wanted to return to. Therefore, it is important to save the pages of the graduate schemes you are interested in. I created a careers folder in my favourites to save the links to graduate schemes I liked. However, this could also be done by copying and pasting the links to a Word document. Any way of saving the web links would save time and make it easier to find and apply to the jobs later.
4. Closing dates – Being aware of closing dates is very important so you don’t forget and miss out on opportunities. I created a table to keep up to date with graduate schemes I liked and their closing dates. My table listed the job title, employer, location, wage, start date, scheme length, and the application closing date. This helped me to organise my thoughts on what I wanted to apply to and when I needed to do it.
Searching for graduate schemes can be tough but there is always support available whether you need to talk to a career adviser, find reliable career websites, or just want to read more information on graduate schemes. Why not sign up for our Jobs by email, a fortnightly newsletter for final year students?
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