Work Experience

Want to join the Careers Service team?

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Are you interested in working 1:1 with students? Do you have excellent people skills and experience of giving 1:1 advice in a workplace or voluntary setting?

Why not apply to become one of our CV advisers?

The Careers Service is now recruiting paid part-time CV advisers for the next academic year.

CV advisers provide 1:1 CV, covering letter and LinkedIn profile feedback to students and graduates of all degree disciplines and academic stages as part of a drop-in service, via email and at Careers Service events.

Applicants must be a Newcastle University student throughout the 2016/17 academic year.

Deadline to apply: Monday 2 May 2016Print

Apply here and search for CV adviser.


Doctorate Extension Scheme workshops for PhD students

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VC Prof Chris Brink with StudentsSome good news! We are introducing a new one hour visa workshop this year targeted at PhD students.

Understanding the Doctorate Extension Scheme – for PhD students on a Tier 4 visa who would like to stay in the UK after their course ends

If you are currently studying for a PhD on a Tier 4 visa, you can apply for the Doctorate Extension Scheme to stay in the UK for 12 months after your course has ended. You can use the 12 months to gain further experience in your chosen field, seek skilled work, or develop plans to set up your own business.

Come to this workshop to find out more about how this visa extension works and how you can apply for it before your PhD comes to an end. The Visa Team and the Careers Service will be working together to deliver the workshop and ensure you have all the information you need to make an effective application at the right time.

The workshop will run 4 times during this academic year. You don’t need to book in advance, just turn up!

Monday 2nd February – 3-4pm – King’s Gate Room1.26

Thursday 2nd April – 12-1pm – King’s Gate Room 1.26

Thursday 11th June – 1-2pm – King’s Gate Room 1.26

Tuesday 11th August – 12-1pm – King’s Gate Room 1.26

Details about the workshops can be found on the events pages of the Careers Service website.

Work with the BBC on a British Science Association Media Fellowship

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British-Science-AssociationWe get lots of queries from researchers who want to inspire others about science. If you’re considering a career in science communication, then work experience is essential. There are lots of different types of experiences that would help you break into the field, and the British Science Association’s media fellowships will certainly help you to get ahead (not least because it involves a rare opportunity to work with the BBC). See details below!


Do you want to put science in the headlines?

If you do then the British Science Association Media Fellowships are for you.

Experience first-hand how science is reported by spending 3-5 weeks on a summer placement with BBC Newcastle.

You will work with them to produce well informed, newsworthy pieces about developments in science.

Come away better equipped to engage the media, the public and your colleagues with your research.

For details about the scheme, including eligibility and online application form, visit our webpage.

Application deadline: 11 March 2013

Looking for a short term paid opportunity? Postgraduate Assessors required

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Newcastle University |  £13.80 per hour

 This is an opportunity for you to support the assessment process of undergraduate students taking the credit bearing Career Development Module.
Working with a partner this role involves assessing the career development module students, agreeing provisional student marks, writing formative feedback for each student assessed and liaising with module staff on specified assessment matters. You may be required to provide cover in the event of examiner absence.

Successful applicants will be expected to commit to 24-36 hours between 13 May and 31 May 2013 and will be required to attend assessor training in March as an additional part of the selection process.

Newcastle University’s Careers Service offers a career development module, which gives students the opportunity to use work experience, volunteering activities or a part-time job to count towards their degree. This requires assessment through a simulated job interview.You can find more information on the Career Development Module here

 Closing Date: 25/01/2013

Person Requirements: Your application should demonstrate that you have good communications skills, able to simultaneously ask a question, actively listen to response, record evidence of assessment criteria and respond over the course of a series of 20 minute oral examinations.

Degree Discipline: This post is available to Newcastle University full time postgraduate students only. Applicants are expected to possess an undergraduate degree from a recognised University and have experience of assessing Undergraduate students against set criterion. Full training will be given.

How to Apply: To apply, please email your CV and a covering letter to
Informal enquiries should also be directed to this email address.

Updates from the wilderness

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I know, I know, we’ve been a bit quiet of late. That’s semester 1 for you – a mad whirlwind of appointments; emails; meetings; more emails; teaching; and a few more emails, whilst valiantly trying to maintain a grip on your sanity. I can only apologise for our recent quiet! Let me update you on what we’ve been hearing about since we last posted:

  • It seems that the AHRC are looking to go down the ‘internships for PhD students’ route, along with the BBSRC. As with the BBSRC, you can’t do research work in a university – the objective is to look outside for something new to add to your skills and experience. Because I’m the naturally curious type, I’d be really interested to hear about what kinds of internships arts and humanities PhDs would like to pursue (or what PhD graduates wished they had pursued!).
  • The Royal Society for Chemistry is looking for early career researchers in science (all disciplines) to participate in their SET for Britain poster competition, giving you the opportunity to present your work to VIPs in the House of Commons – a great opportunity for anyone interested in public policy. The closing date is Christmas Eve (24th December).
  • I spent this lunchtime perusing a video (do people still call them videos?!) that some Bristol University students made in response to the European Commission’s video “Science: It’s a Girl Thing“, which aims to encourage more women into science. I read that the Bristol video cost around £20 to make, so I have to admit that I was super impressed with what they had done with the budget, and had a hearty chuckle at how completely ridiculous it was. It was only when I got to the end and saw that there was no punchline that I realised that I was watching the European Commission’s video and not the spoof. I invite you to watch, in slack-jawed amazement, as the EC accurately depicts the life of women in science. If only I hadn’t studied geography, my working life too could have been filled with make-up brushes, lip-gloss, and blowing kisses at iron filings. I guess hindsight really is 20/20. 

University/industry collaborations – what do you think?

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This week, I have been mostly reading The Wilson Review. Commissioned by the government in 2011, the review explores the relationship between universities and businesses. I haven’t finished the whole thing yet but, so far, the key debates and recommendations focus on:

  • Universities as a supplier of knowledge, innovation that could be shared with business (building on the success of KTPs)
  • Universities as a supplier of knowledgeable and innovative people, who could go on to work in business
  • The need for businesses to offer work experience and internships to students, postgraduates and contract research staff, in order to prepare them for a life outside academia
  • The potential, therefore, for businesses and universities to collaborate more closely on curriculum design
  • The role that universities play in local and regional economies, and whether this can and should translate into university engagement with local and regional governance structures
  • The tension between UK immigration policies and the recruitment and retention of international students and staff.

So the Review has a lot of offer in the way of meaty and interesting discussion (two questions that I’m pondering are: what are the implications in terms of what universities are for? And wouldn’t the public and third sectors also benefit from closer collaboration with universities, because we surely also want these sectors to be world-class hubs of creativity, knowledge and innovation?).

The main question that I am pondering at the moment, however, is the issue of internships for PhD students and contract research staff. When I was a PhD and then a postdoc, I’m not sure how I would have felt about this, as I was already pretty busy and feeling quite pushed for time just getting my day-to-day work done, and using my extra time to chase publications.

However, as a Careers Adviser, I can’t help but think of how few PhD graduates researchers go on to permanent careers in academia (only 23% of PhD graduates were working as academic staff 3.5 years after graduation), and how many of the researchers I meet who struggle to understand what they have to offer life outside academia. Moreover, some employers (not all!) have reservations about the ability of long-term researchers to adapt to life in a commercial environment. So, I like the idea of being prepared for a change of plans.

I also think that, when I meet PhD students or researchers who have been out of academia for a while, that break from university life has really benefitted them as academics, as they are better at seeing research as their career, rather than their life, and engage in their professional development accordingly.

So I think there’s a lot to be said for the internships idea, but I wonder how the harried researcher will find the time to fit it in, and whether PIs and supervisors will be supportive. What do you think? Would you appreciate the opportunity to work outside academia for a month or two, or do you think that it would be an unwelcome distraction from your work?

PhD students wanted for part-time role in the Careers Service

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CV Adviser
Ref C994C
Faculty/Services Professional Support Services
Department Careers Service
Job Type Administrative Support
Hours of Work Part time
Salary: £8.16 per hour (including holiday pay)
Closing Date: 20 May 201

You will provide 1:1 CV and covering letter feedback to students and graduates of all degree disciplines and academic stages as part of a drop-in service, via e-mail and at Careers Service events.

You will undertake training with regard to best practice in CV writing and basic advice and guidance skills.  You will also be expected to develop and maintain a thorough knowledge and understanding of the resources and services offered by the Careers Service and liaise effectively with colleagues across the Service.

Qualified to at least degree level (or equivalent), you will have experience of giving 1:1 advice in a workplace or voluntary setting. You must be enterprising and self-motivated, with excellent written English and oral communication skills.  The ability to deal sensitively with students and graduates is essential, as is the ability to motivate. You will be flexible with a proven record of reliability.

Applicants must be a Newcastle University postgraduate student throughout the academic year 2012/13.

Candidates should submit a CV and covering letter with their application.

These posts are fixed term from September 2012 until March 2013.  Each CV Adviser will work a minimum of 4 and maximum of 10 hours per week.

Selection exercises:  Week commencing 28 May 2012
Final interviews for those successful in the selection exercises: 13 and 15 June 2012

Potential applicants are welcome to contact Stephanie Barton, Careers Service Information Team Manager, to discuss the posts further (tel. 0191 222 8051).

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