GradStart for Universities is a programme of workshops and associated supporting activities which raises students’ abilities before and during job search.
It is tailored to the needs of, and situation in, each university in which we work.
These are the specific outcomes the programme seeks for its students:
There are also valuable incidental outcomes. Each student will be able to develop the skills he or she needs:
As students realise the outcomes above, the effect on the university will be:
We believe that it is useful to make a distinction between ‘employability’ and ‘recruitability’.
Employability embraces all the skills, mental qualities and strengths, and attitude (approach to work) that are needed to be a successful employee in a business, both individually and as part of a team. This requires competence in teamwork, management and leadership, commercial awareness, business and financial awareness, and other subjects.
But, however valuable, these are of little use to graduates who are not able to get a job in which they can demonstrate their mastery of them.
Graduates also need to be good at the things which will get them a job:. We call these skills and attributes recruitability:
They determine the graduate’s likelihood of being recruited.
Recruitability skills are, of course, needed in work. They are the components of employability which have to be in place first.
We work with students on the following—enough to get them through the door of their first full time employer:
We know that any sensible employer recruits on attitude, not ability. Ability in accountancy and finance, for example, can be demonstrated by a student’s degree and their professional accreditation.
What employers need—and look for—are recruits who are self-reliant, articulate, who have interpersonal skills, who have an awareness of the context within which they will be working, ie, wider business and commercial issues, and have the right attitude. This is likely to have been achieved through work experience and the development of these ‘soft skills’ GradStart provides.
GradStart for Universities is a programme workshops and associated supporting activities tailored to meet the needs and situation of each university in which we work.
Typically, each student is part of a group of up to 20 individuals. Each group receives:
Each session will be up to 2.5 hours giving a maximum of up to 50 hours workshop time per student over three years.
We believe it is more important that students develop a good level of understanding and proficiency in a restricted set of skills rather than being exposed to a much larger volume of content which they do not have the time or opportunity master.
The high level subject areas we will cover are:
This area addresses the personal characteristics and skills we need to be successful:
In short, acquiring insight and knowing what to do with that insight. This forms the basis of a good attitude. Students also need to be able to handle negative pressures:
We create a ‘facilitating environment’ which empowers the students to change themselves and which supports them when they choose to do so.
We achieve this in a variety of ways which recognise that people learn best when they are in their feelings and are most likely to change their behaviour when they address their feelings and beliefs.
We believe it is important for students to have a record of their performance on this programme. Students will be asked to carry out an assignment, documenting their learning and work seeking activities, such as:
The benefits of such an assignment are:
Practical exercises will be set and carried out during class sessions, and between classes. The aim is to get students practising the necessary skills and therefore we need to give them the maximum opportunity to do so. Exercises will be geared towards:
Employer engagement programme
We believe it is essential that students get contact with external businesses, and the businesses have contact with them. The extent to which mechanisms are in place to achieve this varies widely from university to university. We provide consultancy (and assistance, if needed) to create strong relationships between the university and the business community. This enable students to experience:
Supplementary online resources
We augment the programme with online educational resources. These give students the opportunity to study additional content between sessions to widen their understanding:
> The value of soft skills to the UK economy
> GradStart taster sessions
> Blog: Employability: why are students not engaged?
> Blog: Employability: what stops it?
Please contact Jeremy Marchant, email@example.com or 01 453 764 615, to discuss this further
by Jeremy Marchant . © 2015 Akonia Ltd . added 21 november 2015 . image: Free images