How Universities Make Young People More Employable

How Universities Make Young People More Employable

It is not easy being a millennial graduate. Finding a satisfying, well-paid job with good prospects has always been a major challenge but the recruitm

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It is not easy being a millennial graduate. Finding a satisfying, well-paid job with good prospects has always been a major challenge but the recruitment market is ever more busy and competitive in the midst of a difficult economic situation. Technology is constantly changing so companies are continually adapting the skills they are looking for. There are completely new areas such as Fin Tech and nanotechnology, which never existed before but will become increasingly important in the future. There are a number of ways universities can prepare students for the job market and make them more employable from the beginning of their degree course. Students who take an active role in exploring the career support available multiply their chances of finding that elusive perfect fit of the best candidate for the best job.

Explicit CV Building Skills Within Course Content

The sooner you start building your professional profile the better. This includes technical qualifications but also “soft skills” such as time management (working to deadlines), verbal and written communication, emotional intelligence and negotiation. Many highly sought-after skills in the job market form an essential part of university course work, but they are not always signposted to students or presented to potential employers as much as they could be. For example, history graduates have the ability to think critically, evaluate, and present information. Universities can help students to identify and develop these important skills so that even as undergraduates they are already consciously working towards professional goals of best practice, skills and knowledge.


Work Placements

Employers are increasingly looking for candidates with relevant real life experience that complements and builds on theoretical course work. Students on work placements enjoy the benefits of mentoring, networking and learning directly from experts. You have the chance to develop problem-solving skills, improve your knowledge of specific sectors and perhaps even discover a spark of inspiration you never thought of before. It could be an innate skill just waiting to be developed or a fascinating new line of work to aspire to. At the University of Bolton, students from a range of academic disciplines take part in different types of work experience lasting anything from a couple of days to a year. Some of the placements are paid while others are voluntary. Depending on the needs of the individual student and the requirements of each job, you can find a balance that maximises learning potential and employability. You might even find out you are the next great entrepreneur.

University Career Service

While some students have a very clear idea of what they want to do after university, many feel daunted and even lost. Universities can provide a friendly service with trained staff that understand the employment needs of students with different backgrounds and ambitions. This crucial guidance and support can help you resolve quick questions at a drop-in level or, if you have a specific career path in mind, you can identify opportunities in big and small companies in the local region as well as further afield. The Institute for Small Businesses and Entrepreneurship (ISBE) attests to the benefits of collaboration between universities and growing companies.

Extra Activities

The magic combination that everyone hopes for in a co-worker is someone who is good at his or her job and is easy to be around. Students who have a passion for activities outside their work often bring similar skills and attitudes to their professional tasks. Excellent time management skills, teamwork and dedication make them highly attractive to recruiters. Although many students reduce their extra-curricular activities as their degrees progress, it is a good idea to continue with one sport, musical instrument or other activity because most companies value employees who really distinguish themselves from the other candidates.


Universities can help students to bridge the gap between academic qualifications and high-value employability that is so important in the recruitment process. In a fast-changing market place where the ultimate goal is to stimulate economic activity and growth, students and business owners alike enjoy the benefits of these gateways to success.