Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Work Placement Boost for City University Students

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Work Placement Boost for City University Students

Article excerpt

ALREADY a top 15 UK university when it comes to graduate prospects (The Times/ Sunday Times Good University Guide 2016), Newcastle University is committed to student employability by offering all undergraduates an optional placement year within their course.

With top recruiters now offering around a third of their graduate opportunities each year (Highfliers Research Survey 2016) to previous placement students, year-long placements are now key to companies' recruitment strategies as their future talent pool.

The placement year can become a year-long interview process with students aware of this and keen to impress and make an impact.

Accenture recruits many students from Newcastle each year and Katrina Beadle, Accenture's internal recruitment specialist, said: "Newcastle University stands out to us for fresh-thinking, well researched students, who actively seek the knowledge to help them perform well in their graduate positions, but also during the recruitment process.

"We have had great success from graduates who have joined our software engineering and client delivery schemes from Newcastle University and hope to continue this through our close engagement with the students."

Marc Lintern, director of Newcastle University Careers Service, said: "Work placements go a long way towards boosting the employment prospects of our students. We have known for a long time that employers value work experience when recruiting, but it has now become an expectation among employers that graduates will have work experience.

"We are also finding that more and more employers are using the placement year to make advance job offers for when our students graduate. While placements are good for students, we know that businesses also benefit from the process, both in their day to day work and in identifying future hires.

"We therefore work with many hundreds of local, national and international businesses each year to help them recruit placement students, and are keen to hear from any businesses interested in this opportunity."

Kate Westerby, from Unilever Future Leaders Programme, said: "Newcastle graduates have always been a great success at Unilever. We want to continue this tradition and carry on receiving these top quality students into our placements and Unilever Future Leader Programmes."

Christina Ong, a Newcastle University finalist, spent her placement in the university's digital marketing and social media team. She said: "I found this placement on the university careers service website and knew straight away that it would be the perfect fit for me to gain valuable industry experience while staying here in Newcastle.

"It has definitely done that and more. I've had the opportunity to truly showcase my potential and develop skills in a number of key areas that will no doubt help me in my final year of university and my graduate job applications. …

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