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Graduates

Deciding what to do after you have graduated can be a difficult decision.

Below are some of the options available and where to look for further information.

Working in the UK

Your university careers service can offer information and professional guidance on writing a CV, interview skills and the top graduate employers in your area.

Prospects is the official graduates careers website listing job vacancies, advice on applications and discussion forums.

Jobcentre Plus hold a database of job vacancies throughout the UK, plus information on apprenticeships, self employment and job grants.

GOV.UK has a section for graduates that includes information on graduate schemes and internships, employment rights, job placements and postgraduate study.

Milkround.com is a graduate recruitment website for internships and job alerts. You can also search the employer a-z directory and find out about career events in your area.

Grad South West works in partnership with university’s career advisory services and holds a database of graduate jobs specifically in the South West.

Employment4students is a website dedicated to helping students and young people find work. This web resource has lots of information on part-time and summer jobs, gap year jobs, graduate jobs and internships as well as CV, application and interview tips.

Student Gems is a website where businesses advertise projects to students. Students can gain experience and up their skills while businesses can save on costs.

Self-employment

If you are interested in setting up your own business, contact Business Link. Business Link offer business advice open days, business plan preparation, advice on business finance, buying a franchise and a wealth of other information.

Knowledge Transfer Partnerships

Short Knowledge Transfer Partnerships will provide 10-40 week placements in Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) for graduates and postgraduates to work on specific projects vital to the SME. In 2010-11 there will be 500 KTPs available.

Further study and funding

There are currently over 58,000 postgraduate courses on offer in the UK, with postgraduate courses being open to anyone with a Bachelors degree of a 2:2 or above. The National Postgraduate Database contains a full list of postgraduate courses in the UK.

A Professional Career Development Loan (PCDL) can help you pay for learning that enhances your job skills or career prospects. It’s a bank loan that you pay back once you’ve finished your course and you don’t pay interest for the period when you’re in learning. Visit GOV.UK for more information.

Working abroad

If you are interested in working abroad, Jobcentre Plus and International Jobs Online have a listing of international graduate vacancies in a range of industries.

If you are moving to a European Union (EU) or European Economic Area (EEA) country, you do not need a work permit. You’ll have the same rights in terms of working conditions, pay and social security matters as the nationals of that country.

If you are moving to a country outside the EU, you will need to check whether you need a work permit, resident permit or a visa for that country. Visit the Home Office for more information.

Volunteering and travelling

For volunteer opportunities in the UK, visit Volunteering England. Your university career service may also have information about volunteering locally.

The Voluntary Service Overseas (VSO) organisation places volunteers in over 40 developing countries to help fight poverty.

If you decide to travel abroad, visit the The Foreign and Commonwealth Office for advice on visas, permits, vaccinations and general travel advice.

There are a number of companies dedicated to placing volunteers in gap year programmes ranging from conservation to community projects and from sports coaching to jungle trekking. Type ‘gap year’ into a search engine for the best results.

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