Graduate Schemes – What are they & should I be applying?

If you are a final year student, a graduate scheme is one career option that you should be considering.  

What are they? 

Graduate schemes are structured training programmes run by many leading UK employers, which offer a period of paid training and work. They usually last between one to two years and are available in a number of streams or specialisms.  

“Approximately 60% of graduate schemes are open to students from any degree discipline.” 

Advantages of graduate schemes 

Graduate schemes provide a great opportunity to start building your career. You’ll get hands on experience from the outset, with access to training to develop key skills and professional qualifications where relevant. Good entry-level salaries with the potential for an accelerated career path. You could be working in a specific role, within an established team, or work in different areas of the organisation over the duration of the programme.  

“Many graduates are offered permanent roles on completion of graduate schemes.” 

Issues to consider  

The demand for graduate scheme places is high and competition can be fierce. You can prepare by researching the organisation and role. Many employers include Graduate testimonials on their website; you could also consider contacting USW Alumni working at the organisation. Ensure you are clear about the competencies, behaviour and skills the employer is looking for so that you can ensure you evidence this through the recruitment process.  

USW Careers Support  

If you would like some support with the application process USW Careers run a CV and application checking service, mock interviews and assessment centres.  

Book an appointment with a Careers Adviser  

Should I be applying? 

If you think a graduate scheme might be an option for you, start searching for opportunities now. The majority of opportunities are advertised between September and January, of your final year for a September 2020 start.  

“Check opening and deadline dates carefully as some close as early as October” 

Specialist Graduate Jobs Websites 

You will find a broad range of Graduate schemes and Graduate Jobs advertised on these specialist jobs websites: STEM opportunities  

General Job websites 

You can also find Graduate Schemes and Graduate jobs on general jobs websites, ensure you specify ‘Graduate’ in search parameters

Find out more about Graduate Schemes

Chat to a Careers Adviser about Graduate Schemes 

Book an appointment  

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