Despite the ongoing pandemic, the Career Centre of Leeds University never failed to conduct their annual autumn career discovery. The event entitled with “Discover your future” happened across October and was offering different events such as career fairs, employer meet-up, and personal development webinars. All events are conducted online and went equally as good as offline events.
The Career Centre uses Career fair plus to make the online career fair happen. We can download the application through the app store and play store, or if you don’t want to download the apps, you can simply go to their website. From there, simply make an account, choose the fair that is happening in your organization, book time slots for one-to-one meeting, or discover a drop-in session with employers.
I personally prefer online career fair because they are easier, flexible, safer, and more organized. I also could choose a timeslot to have a one-to-one conversation to employers which is a non-existent feature in offline career fair. In comparison with offline career, I did not have to queue for gaining information which saves me time. The employer can also focus on me which allows me to give them some impression in establishing connection. Finally, I can avoid crowds which is an important for my health and safety since the pandemic.
The career fair happened almost every day with each day having a different theme. I attended sustainable futures and environmental jobs career fair on the 27th of October. It was a career fair for companies who offer roles in sustainability or ‘green company’ who offer services to improve planet’s health.
I was looking into 2 companies: Jacobs and Hermes. I had one to one meeting in both companies by booking a specific available time slot, and it lasted for 15 minutes. From 2 companies, I gained prestigious information on what the companies are, the details about the role, whether it is an entry role or graduate scheme, whether they sponsor international students, the application stages, and the details on the entry requirements.
Unfortunately, both companies are not offering role that is related to food science. However, through my skills, I still can apply to their role as they do not have a specific degree requirement. For Hermes, they are also planning to incorporate sustainable food delivery in the future which might be relevant to my degree.
The good thing about having a one-to-one meeting with employer is that the connection I gained with them. I can gain their email and connection in LinkedIn. This eases my job hunting as they might be interested in offering a role for me in the future whenever needed.
Hi everyone, it’s me Khanh. Last Thursday 21st October, I had the opportunity to participate in the career fair “Discover your future: Sustainable Futures and Environmental Jobs” and I am here to share with you some of my experience. As a graduate postgraduate student, I figured out that this career fair is really useful as we got the chance to attend group workshops to get to know more about each company and even can book 1-2-1 appointments to speak with employers about graduate/ work placement opportunities. In total, I attended 2 events: (1) Savills Graduate Recruitment- Group Session and (2) Sustainability at Jacobs- Presentation and Q/A with Sustainability Professionals
- Savills Graduate Recruitment- Group Session.
The very first session I took part in was “Savills Graduate Recruitment– Group Session ”, which was led by Hebe Williams and Hester Thompson. Savills is one of the world’s leading property agents that provides diverse consultancy services including building, environmental consultancy, planning project management to support clients within their property decisions and ambitions. Right now Savills is actively recruiting many positions such as Internship and Graduate Scheme, which I am actually interested in. For that reason, I booked an appointment with Savills and had an informative discussion with 2 representatives from Savills- Hebe and Hester. At the beginning, I thought it would be a group session, but actually there is only me there with Hebe and Hester, so I felt really amazing and comfortable. They started out by introducing Savills and the current graduate schemes/work placement that Savills is currently hiring. Then I demonstrated my interest for the Sustainability Graduate Scheme 2022. Heba and Hester were really supportive as they guided me throughout the role, the recruitment process and also what they expect from the candidates. In conclusion, even though the session with Savills was just a short one, I found it to be very useful for me as a graduate student.
2. Sustainability at Jacobs- Presentation and Q/A with Sustainability Professionals
The second workshop that I participated in was “Sustainability at Jacobs– Presentation and Q/A with Sustainability Professionals” hosted by James Steven and Chris Sowerby from Jacobs. The workshop included 2 parts: Jacob’s introduction and Q/A session. The workshop began with Jacobs sharing about their company and introducing exciting projects and career journeys relating to sustainability professionals. In fact, right now, Jacobs has had more than 25 Environmental/Sustainability graduate positions open for 2022 ranging from environmental assessment/ management, landscape, air quality and sustainability consultancy. I have known Jacobs since during my course, my professors invited Jacobs to come as guest lecturers and share with us about their company and the field that they are currently working on. Jacobs is one of the leading global environmental firms that provides technical, construction and environmental consulting services. Within their session in the career fair, James and Chris also provided some advice and three tips for us as graduate students on how to build and develop our career path.
Here were the three tips:
i. Grow your professional network.
Join workshops, networking events; be proactive in approaching people and put yourself in a position to be noticed and speak to people. Utilize Linked and other social media channel to connect and broaden your professional network.
ii. Take opportunities to work with relevant organizations.
Try to gain different opportunities to work with different environmental, sustainability-related organizations through volunteering internships and research projects to earn working experience. Any experience would be considered as valuable for any graduate students.
Believe in yourself. Be confident in your skills and knowledge and strengthen your weaknesses.
In conclusion, Khanh and Anastasia- we both think that the career fair was really interesting and useful for graduate students like us. Thanks to the event, we got the precious opportunity to meet and talk directly to the companies that we aim to work with in the near future and prepare ourselves better for the application process. We hope that next year, there will be more events like this from the Career Centre, University of Leeds so that more international graduate students like us can connect to more companies whose work are relevant to our courses/majors.