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2009

Sector Updates »Engineering »Public Sector

»Sales & Marketing

january

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CAN TEACH: WILL TEACH Teaching as a real alternative REALW.JAN09.COVER.indd 1

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Quite simply, things are bigger here. There’s more of everything; more development, more ambition, more international opportunities and a lot more work/life balance too. So, whatever you want from LIFE, visit www.kpmg.co.uk/careers and find out when we’re visiting your campus.

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You’ll find there’s more to LIFE at KPMG.

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EDITOR’S LETTER

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CONTENTS JANUARY 2009

ON THE COVER

UP FRONT 06 Reality Bytes Top tips on how to give your CV a spring-clean and stay positive in 2009, alongside some great book giveaways.

SECTOR UPDATES 10 What’s Going On? While news stories may give the impression the end is nigh for certain work sectors, we give you the real lowdown and a realistic appraisal of career prospects in different areas. 12 Update on Engineering 13 Update on Finance 14 Update on Logistics 15 Update on the Public Sector 17 Update on Retail, Sales & Marketing 20 Update on Technology and IT

REGIONAL SPOTLIGHT 22 Scotland The Brave What it’s really like working and living north of the border. 

Plan to shine in 2009

S

o, if you believed every news item you’ve heard or read since the middle of last year, you may be feeling that there’s pretty much no reason to be cheerful about career prospects for 2009. And while it’s true the economy is in dire straits and recruitment chances look dim, there is certainly no need to believe your career will fail even before it has begun. The trick is to be realistic in your outlook, play to your strengths, and to plan ahead. In this issue we give an honest appraisal of some of the most popular work sectors for graduates and talk to industry experts about whether you can expect to find jobs within them. We also have great advice on how to make the most of your CV and to stay positive. We’ve also got two indepth sections: one on deferring entering the job market for a while in order to do postgraduate study and thereby strengthen your career prospects; the other on training to be a teacher – one of the most popular career choices during times of uncertainty (nine out of 10 newly qualified teachers obtain a teaching position within six months of completing their training). Finally, in our occasional series of turning the spotlight away from London, we look north of the border to the vibrant, exciting cities of Scotland and what they can offer you. If you want even more job ads, career advice, and our always popular real life case studies then go to www.realworldmagazine.com and remember, we love getting feedback from you, so if there’s anything you’d like to tell us about, or would like to see in Real World, then just drop us a line.

Dee Pilgrim, Editor dee@realworldmagazine.com

EDUCATION SPECIAL 26 The Masterplan Why postgrad education could be your ticket to career progression.  30 What’s Your Talent? Could teaching be the career for you?

IN THE NEXT ISSUE >> Coming up in our March issue: Real World accentuates the positive and says being optimistic is the way to stay ahead in 2009.

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Editor Dee Pilgrim • Senior Reporter Catherine Watson • Designer Yang Ou Sales Paul Wade, Harmesh Sansoa • Marketing/Distribution Manager Mitul Patel Client Services Manager Marie Tasle • Online Brett Singer • Managing Director Darius Norell Real World is a publication of Cherry Publishing: 22-26 Albert Embankment, London SE1 7TJ Tel: 020 7735 4900, Editorial – 020 7735 2111 • Fax: 020 7840 0443 E-mail: info@realworldmagazine.com • Website: www.realworldmagazine.com – for job vacancies, career advice and case studies • Copyright © 2009 Cherry Publishing No part of this publication may be reproduced or stored in a retrieval system without the written permission of the publisher. We cannot accept responsibility for unsolicited manuscripts and photographs or for material lost or damaged in the post. The views in this publication or on our website are not necessarily those held by the publisher.

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realitybytes news*views*advice*strategies

The Big Sell

BOOKGIVEY! AWA Be CV Savvy If you’ve applied for loads of work

than two pages of A4. The only exception is academics who need to

On page 17 of this issue of Real World you will find an overview of the Sales and Marketing sector and if this is an area you are interested in then you really need to take a look at new book Why Killer Products Don’t Sell (Wiley, £14.99). Written by experts Ian Gotts and Dominic Rowsell, it gives the reasons why some truly innovative products never fulfil their revenue promise, and the sales and marketing actions that could have ensured they really did sell. The book is aimed at people in both Sales and Marketing and contains information on buying cultures, managing risk, value created sales, and why so many companies get it wrong. It also asks pertinent questions such as what is a failure? How do people buy? And can you have too much success? We have five copies of the book to giveaway to the first people to send an email entitled Killer Products to dee@realworldmagazine.com

We have five copies of You’re Hired! CVs by Corinne Mills to giveaway. All you

experience positions or jobs and still not got any interest, you might like to

list publications etc. • F ooters: Include you name and page

need to do is send an email entitled You’re Hired! With your name and

take a look at your CV. You may believe it is a perfect specimen, but the truth is it could probably do with a good wash and brush up. That’s where the newly published You’re Hired! CVs by Corinne Mills (Trotman, £9.99), comes in. Corinne is a qualified career coach and this guide is for ambitious individuals looking to move up the career ladder. It is packed with strategies for putting together a great CV and is filled with real life sample CVs and exercises to help readers pinpoint their skills. Included is advice on how to ‘beautify’ your CV, including: • Font size: Choose one font to use throughout. Arial or Times New Roman 10 -12 always work well. • Length: Aim for a CV that is no longer

number in the footer of each page in case they get muddled once they are printed out. •W  hite space: Make sure that around headings and paragraphs of text there is plenty of white space to make it look aesthetically pleasing. If you are struggling to get your information into two pages, it is better to edit and remove text rather than pack it in too tightly so it looks cramped. •C  ompatibility: Formatting options like columns, shading, boxes etc may look nice, but they could interfere with the recruiter’s software package. Leave these formatting options out, unless you have checked the format will be okay.

preferred contact address to dee@ realworldmagazine.com

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Well Served Applications to join the civil service rise by a third. The number of graduates applying to join the civil service fast stream has risen by 33 per cent according to Sir Gus O’Donnell, the cabinet secretary. He told MPs that the figure has risen to 22,445 – a rise of a third on 2007, and has nearly doubled since 2006. Sir Gus revealed that competition for top jobs in Whitehall has increased because of career uncertainty in the private sector. He said the civil service is now attracting applications from young

redundant bankers following staff cuts at City firms. Jonathan Baume, general secretary of the senior civil servants’ union, the FDA, told the Guardian newspaper: ‘This is very good news for the civil service. I suspect it is because the job offers more security, and initially salaries are comparable with the City.’ The Whitehall salaries range between £25,000 and £27,000 a year and are on a par with starting salaries in the City. To find out more about a civil service career turn to pages 15 and 16.

 3 Be bold

specific areas for your own improvement in 2009 and make sure that you work hard on them throughout the year.    

The Future Favours The Brave With the economic forecast for 2009 getting gloomier by the day, it would be all too easy to give in to depression, hide your head under the duvet and just wish it would all go away. However, the Institute of Leadership & Management (ILM) has issued its top five resolutions for 2009, showing how a little courage and optimism can make you grow stronger. According to Penny de Valk, Chief Executive of ILM: ‘You can almost feel a collective sense of people holding their breath to see what 2009 is going to bring, but the start of a New Year provides a real opportunity to think about what to do differently…. It has never been more important to go into the year ahead with confidence and a fresh approach… Managers must resolve to act on changes that need to be made, seize opportunities, and build a good management approach for the future.’ It’s not only managers who can benefit from a little positive thinking either. Put these five tips into action to make sure you shine in 2009!  

Photograph & Illustration: © iStockphoto

1 Act with integrity People follow authentic leaders so be confident. Even if you don’t have all the answers, focus on finding new and better solutions.  

2 Dare to be different In uncertain times it’s easy to become risk-averse. Make sure you stay open to creative thinking and look for any opportunity the current environment might present.

Avoiding ‘unpleasantness’ is a very British trait, but the cost of neglecting problems can be high. Make sure that you address performance issues with fairness and objectivity.  

4 Invest in your success It’s crucial to invest in your own development. Select one or two very

5 Communicate to motivate Team motivation and productivity are linked directly to confidence and morale, so show your appreciation of the extra effort everyone will be required to put into every day this year.

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realitybytes

A, 2 B, 9 C, 8 D, 3 This aptitude is similar to, but not the same as, mathematical aptitude. The test requires an aptitude to ‘think’ with numbers and therefore is an essential requirement for many careers where practical as well as abstract calculations are made, such as economics and science.

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Which word is closest in meaning to the word CONNECT? Test 4: Form recognition 45

A, ATTACH? B, DULL? C, FETCH? D, SNAP?

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♣♣ ♥ ♥♣ ♥ ♣♣ ♥

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These days it seems it’s not enough for you to shine at interview in order to get that dream job, but you also have to sit and excel at tests. But what do they all mean in terms of what they tell Test 1: Visual logic 23 prospective employers about you? Even importantly, what can they Test 1: more Visual Logic tell you about which career sector youare This is a test of how well you perceive how lines and shapes connected. You aresuited given a question are most to? and some alternative drawings. You have to choose the one drawing that is the most logical. In his bookonHow ToinPass You can marknew your answer the page the way that suits you best. You can cross the correct answer through, mark Page), with a tick, Advanced Aptitude Tests (Kogan

This is a test of how well you are able to perceive differences between shapes. You have to choose the one shape that is EXACTLY ability toalternatives reason might with be words, theThis sameshows as the original. The turned around as well as turned over. Try to imagine what the lines and shapes especially the written word, being the would look like from the other side. With each question you are single most useful in any kind of only allowed to choose one ofstrength the alternatives as your answer. You can mark your answer on the page the way that suits you formal, academic study in in the best. You can cross the correct answer through, mark with a tick, humanities. This aptitude is often circle or underline. It is best to mark your answer with a pencil so that you can erase with it if you change your connected literary andmind. The first of the examples below has been done already.

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How Apt Are You?

(A,B,C,D) chose the one you think goes with this list of numbers: 1 4 2 6 5

RB

5 a) 7

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If you are unsuccessful in obtaining a book in our giveaway we have a 10 per cent offer on the book. Readers should contact Littlehampton Book Services (LBS) on 01903 828503 or mailorders@ lbsltd.co.uk, and quote Ref MF339. P&P are not included in the offer of 10 per cent off the cover price.

In the first example, the value of a club must be ‘2’, because in the second column three clubs totalled ‘6’. The value of a heart must be ‘1’, because in the first column two clubs and a heart totalled ‘5’. It follows that a heart must be ‘1’ less than a club. Therefore, WWW.REALWORLDMAGAZINE.COM RW 9 the answer is ‘b’, 3.

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what’s going on?

With Britain now heading into the worst recession it has experienced in decades, graduates hunting for that all important first job have some hard choices to make.

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WHAT’S NEW | SECTOR UPDATES

N

ew research conducted by TMP Worldwide called ‘Graduates into Employment’, has shown 53 per cent of graduates are either not very, or not at all, confident about finding a job. In the light of this, final year students are becoming more realistic about their job prospects and are taking a proactive approach with 18 per cent making more applications, applying earlier, and exaggerating their achievements. Meanwhile, 15 per cent are concentrating on achieving a 2:1 degree to secure their employment future. In another survey of graduates conducted in October 2008 by PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, 81 per cent of them confessed they are more concerned about their job prospects than in October 2007, mirroring the outlook for experienced recruitment in the UK. Getting a job as soon as possible has become one of their top priorities and as a result over 50 per cent plan to look for work not relevant to their degree study to ensure they get a

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increasingly likely to take the first job they are offered, rather than risk being out of work for an extended period of time. The danger is they may end up in an unsuitable role, or one that does not provide a platform for their favoured future career path once the economy improves. Our advice to young people is to think about how employable they will be once they have completed a role, and what new skills and abilities will they be able to bring to their next job. The best opportunities may not be the roles with the most money or the ones they get offered first.’ Companies that students wanted to apply to, but are now not recruiting, was one of the top three impacts of the downturn that students were experiencing. Despite this, the Top Ten list of most popular sectors for graduates was headed by Banking, Insurance and Finance, followed by: 2 3 4

Accountancy, Finance, Professional Services Marketing, Advertising, PR Management Consultancy/ Media, New Media, Creative, Design

job, while 42 per cent expect less pay than they originally hoped for.

5 6

Public Sector Services IT & Internet

Ongoing job security was the joint top concern for respondents post

7 8

Education Human Resources

graduation, with a third believing employment conditions will not

9

improve for two years. Sonja Stockton, head of student recruitment, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, comments: ‘For such an overwhelming number of students and graduates to be concerned about their job prospects emphasises the need for students to think as early as possible about their options post graduation. In a tight job market, students need to examine how their non-academic skills can combine with a good quality degree to make their application and experience distinctive.’ Darius Norell, founder of Real World, adds: ‘Our experience is that due to the recession young people beginning their careers are

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Engineering, Manufacturing, Utilities Not for Profit, Charities

So what is really going on in these sectors? Are they robust enough to weather the credit crunch and offer good long term career prospects to graduates? Are they still even hiring graduates? Over the next pages Real World highlights how some of these sectors are faring, with comments from industry insiders giving honest appraisals of what graduates should expect. So read on to discover if your future career really does lie in the sector you originally chose, or could follow a completely different path from the one you had planned.

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wHAT’S NEW IN | engineering

Engineering, with approximately half a million professional engineers, brings technology, products and services to market, and in doing so directly contributes approximately £250 billion, 27 per cent of the total UK GDP. In 2006, engineering services directly contributed £3.2 billion in exports to the Balance of Payments. Engineering professionals in the UK: All in employment: 381,000. Including: Civil engineers: 69,000 Mechanical engineers: 45,000 Electrical/electronic engineers: 35,000 Source: ONS

Engineering continues to make a vital contribution to the UK economy as it underpins virtually every aspect of modern life from defence to health and construction. The engineering sector is

game and the ideal match for a prospective employer.’ Meanwhile, new developments in nuclear and alternative energy sources, such as generating electricity from wind, waves and tide, has

(the national skill shortage is estimated at 30 per cent). Traditionally this has occurred because not enough graduates took engineering at degree level, and of those that did many were

huge employing roughly 1.7 million people in total (figures from Engineering Council UK

seen the offshore alternative energy industry growing at the rate of 20 per

poached by the financial sector for their great transferable skills. However,

(ECUK) ). Of these, 188,367 are chartered engineers, 41,603 incorporated engineers,

cent a year. Also, competition and new technology are forcing companies to

due to the current turmoil in the financial sector it is hoped more

and 13,107 engineering technicians. Today, despite the economic

upgrade and develop new product designs, and the advances in Information

engineering graduates will stay in the sector. Engineering has also struggled to

downturn, most engineering sectors are thriving. In particular, two areas are going from strength to strength despite the recession. Civil Engineering is actually enjoying something of a boom due to construction projects with a value of more than £50 billion. These include Crossrail, BAA’s transformation of Heathrow airport, and the Olympic build in Stratford. Greg Lettington, Director at Hays Civil & Structural, comments: ‘Civil engineering is one of the markets which are showing resilience in the current downturn. Professionals in this sector remain in a strong position and are highly sought after. However, employees are in a competitive situation and really need to show that they are on top of their

Technology enable engineers to improve product design more quickly and efficiently than before and help them collaborate with engineers overseas. Chemical engineering graduates command some of the best salaries for new entrants (average starting salary of £26,000 according to the latest iCemE salary survey) and they can work in any field that involves the development of industrial processes. Again, energy production is a big growth area for chemical engineers, especially creating new biofuels. However, there is still a massive shortfall of UK engineers coming into the industry with many firms finding they have to recruit overseas to fill vacancies

attract women and minority ethnic graduates, but this in now changing with a large increase in the percentages of women entering science, engineering and technology degrees and 18 per cent of engineering graduates are now women. However, UK engineering employers still need to widen the recruitment pool. All this means this is a an exciting and lucrative sector in which to build your career. However, if engineering graduates really want to succeed then it is important for them to pursue their education throughout their careers. Engineers who do not keep abreast of changes in their field run the risk of losing beneficial promotions or jobs.

Photography: © iStockphoto.com

Engineering

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Photography: © iStockphoto.com

wHAT’S NEW IN | finance

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money’s too tight to mention Following the collapse of banks such as Lehman Brothers, the nationalisation of Bradford & Bingley, and the takeover of HBOS there are fears that the financial sector will go into freefall this year. The Hay Group, an employment consultancy, recently forecast that 111,000 jobs in the financial sector could be lost in the UK over this year. In October 2008, there was a 19 per cent decline in vacancies.

According to the City Indicator Bulletin for the fourth quarter of 2008 from International Financial Services London (IFSL), new City job vacancies dropped by 5,300 to 21,400 in the third quarter. New vacancies in September were the lowest monthly total for nearly three years. The substantial mismatch that emerged in September between 10,050 new candidates and 5,922 new vacancies points to a much tighter market in the coming months, with the likelihood of significant reduction in headcount. Partial nationalisation may cushion the blow in some places but the gross overcapacity in the sector and a round of mergers will see the sector’s largest ever rationalisation. However, there are still opportunities

out there. According to Sam ReesAdams, Director of Education at Financial Services Skills Council: ‘Financial services will always be a key sector of the economy and critical to the long term success of the UK. The true picture is that all industries have been hit by the credit crunch, not just financial services. I don’t think it would be fair to say that it is more volatile than other sectors. There will always be career opportunities and the financial sector will continue to offer a huge range of roles and functions. New areas

‘In times like this, there is a demand for highly educated graduates,’ says Dirk Nitzsche, senior lecturer in finance at Cass. ‘It is safer for companies to employ someone with a finance related Masters degree, rather than just an undergraduate, as it is a clear marker in terms of academic achievement. A Masters also provides you with the kinds of skills that you need to flourish in a service industry driven economy like the UK or US, and for certain graduates, such as maths, physics and engineering graduates, provides an excellent career

are coming up all the time, for example, forensic accounting. If there is less

conversion route.’ Scott Stevens, Head of Marketing

demand for roles in one part of the sector then that is likely to be offset by

Communications and UK Retail Marketing for F&C Investments, says: ‘Those

new opportunities in others.’ There are also other options available

candidates that are highly qualified or have relevant qualifications are likely to

if you still believe this is the sector for you. One of them is to consider taking a postgraduate specialist Masters in a finance related subject in order to (hopefully) ride out the worst of the recession and boost your employability when you finally do graduate.

fare better. We tend to look favourably on graduates with a finance MSc, and such a qualification may make the difference between obtaining a position or not, in the current climate.’ * Another option is to do a sandwich course which includes work experience with a particular firm with the option to take a full-time position with that firm once your degree is over. * Taken from ‘Surviving the Credit Crunch’, Cass Business School Masters Newsletter, by Steve Coomber.

For jobs in the financial sector check www.realworldmagazine.com British Banking Authority: www.bba.org.uk

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wHAT’S NEW IN | transport & Logistics

on the move Basically, T&L is getting the right product, to the right place, in the right quantity, at the right time, in the best condition, and at an acceptable cost. Any movement of goods requires freight transport, which is an integral part of logistics, and it also embraces purchasing and supplier management, materials management, stock (inventory) management, warehousing, distribution, Public transport, and customer service. There are many other jobs at graduate level including purchasing managers, administrative personnel, engineers, technicians, and buyers. Having a career in logistics will never be static and there are many opportunities to continuously develop your personal skills. From the start you will be involved in major operations that touch every household in the country and you will develop a variety of strengths and experience, including people management, problem solving and commercial acumen.  All this makes logistics an exciting prospect for graduates. Because this is such a broad sector it should be able to weather the economic downturn well, although there will inevitably be some shrinkage. Dr Mick Jackson, Chief Executive Officer at Skills for Logistics, the Sector Skills Council, says:  ‘Logistics is a vital sector to the global economy and despite challenging times its pivotal role means that it is a relatively robust sector. As all goods moving around the economy are stored, handled and transported through the supply chain, logistics companies will continue to represent excellent opportunities for graduate recruitment and indeed career progression. It is supply chain management and logistics

TRANSPORT AND LOGISTICS – The Numbers Transport and Logistics currently employs 2.3 million people in the UK, spanning some 196,000 companies. Employment stats – Transport According to Skills Sector for Transport (figures from Labour Force Survey Spring 2006): • There are around 722,000 people working in the Transport sector (from managers and engineers to taxi drivers) • Number of people employed in each industry in the passenger transport sector: Rail industry - 56,000; Bus and Coach industry - 241,000; Taxi and Private Hire industry - 182,000; Water industry 53,000; Aviation industry - 150,000; Driver Training industry - 40,000; Total in whole sector - 722,000; • The percentage of male workers to female workers in passenger transport across the whole of the UK is 79% to 21% • The largest employment areas are the South East (133,000 staff) and London (113,000 staff), together they account for one third of all passenger transport staff working in the UK

of companies existing – in 2000 there were approximately 195,200 companies in Great Britain and by 2006 this had declined to 190,300.’ Two trends that are pushing the industry forward are new technology and corporate responsibility. The sector is also becoming more aware of its environmental and social responsibilities, looking to reduce its huge carbon footprint and employ a more diverse workforce. This is a sector that is expanding rapidly and desperately needs new talent. It needs people with imagination and management skills. SKILLS FOR TRANSPORT – is the Sector Skills Council for the Passenger Transport industry in the UK. www.goskills.org SKILLS FOR LOGISTICS – is the Sector Skills Council for the Logistics industry in the UK. www.skillsforlogistics.org

that will provide companies with a competitive edge as they fight to climb out of the recession. ‘The credit crunch is impacting on all industry sectors and over the past couple of years the logistics sector has seen a number of the major players consolidating, for example, DHL and Exel Logistics, and Norbert Dentressangle and Christian Salvesen. Both these organisations have actually expanded in size and scope across Europe during these challenging economic times. As for SMEs working in the logistics sector, there has been some reduction in the number

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wHAT’S NEW IN | public sector

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Photography: © iStockphoto.com

public sector The Public Sector covers a huge variety of careers across many areas. You could work for local government or central government in education, housing or healthcare. You could be employed by the armed forces or the emergency services, or you could even work in the charity or not for profit sector. Which ever area you choose you can be certain this is a career where you ‘give something back’ and really do make a difference to society. Although no sector is completely recession-proof, the Public Sector is more robust than most and so this is still a good place to look as you start your career. John Philpott, Chief Economist at the CIPD (Chartered Institue of Personnel and Development) recently said: ‘The downturn has meant much reduced net hiring in the private sector and net job reductions in the public sector. In the early part of the decade periods of slower growth in private sector employment were masked by relatively rapid growth in public sector jobs. But 2008 was the first year for a decade that the engine of job creation was spluttering right across the economy.’ However, the Public Sector is still hiring and there are plenty of pluses to a career in this sector including flexible working practices and an emphasis on a good work/life

Graduate Development Programme (NGDP) comes in. The NGDP is designed to take highly talented graduates and turn them into the senior managers who will shape the future of local government at the highest level. Councils are specifically looking for adaptable, resourceful graduates who will embrace and effect change. Tim Hodey, National Graduate Development Programme consultant at the Improvement and Development Agency for local government (IDeA) comments: ‘Of course the current economic climate is affecting all employers, and those in the public sector are no different.  However, I would say that for graduates the sector is more secure than most, and I expect job prospects will remain stable through a downturn.  Local government needs graduates to bring in fresh ideas and energy, helping deliver top quality services while remaining focused on local people. Roles in local government are incredibly diverse, including areas such as leisure, health, environment, planning and social services. Recently (as in every sector) we have seen growth in knowledge-based and creative jobs.  ‘The national graduate development

•P  ublic sector employment increased by 13,000 (seasonally adjusted) in the second quarter of 2008 to 5.771 million employees. •E  mployment in central government increased by 8,000. Public corporations increased by 3,000, and local government increased by 2,000. • T he number of employees in the Civil Service decreased by 1,000. • local government employs over two million people – one of the largest employers in the UK. • there are around 600 occupations and thousands of different job titles in local government.

programme offers the trainees thorough management training and hands-on experience through a work placement programme. Placements can last up to

balance. Some people are put off applying because of the perceived

six months and allow graduates the opportunity to work across a range of

bureaucracy around these jobs. Because of this there are now schemes in place to

council departments. This is supported with our custom designed postgraduate

attract the best graduates into the sector, including attractive pay

diploma, and access to a network of support through other graduates,

packages. This is also where the National

mentors, and senior managers.’ The programme is designed to put graduates’ vision and creative thinking to use, and gives them the chance to fast-track their career and become senior managers as quickly as possible. The NGDP recruits up to 80 Trainees to join the programme each October. In order to apply you should have an achieved (or predicted) 2.1 in any discipline and you should be eligible to work in the UK without a permit. (www. ngdp.co.uk) For more Public Sector jobs and information go to http://www. jobsgopublic.com/ and, of course, www.realworldmagazine.com

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wHAT’S NEW IN | public sector CASE STUDY

retail, sales & marketing

Helen Lesowiec Age: 22 years old Degree and university: History BA (Hons) at St Edmund Hall, University of Oxford Job Title: National Management Trainee (NMT) on the National Graduate Development Programme for local government (NGDP). This two-year scheme combines high-level work placements at a host council with academic study for a Postgraduate Diploma in Local Government Management (PDLGM) at Warwick University.

Why did you decide to go into the Public Sector? I knew that I wanted to do something meaningful in my career and so have always been drawn to the Public Sector. Local government particularly appealed to me because it is so close to local communities and has a tangible impact on so many people’s lives. It is also an incredibly varied sector and as one of the largest employers in the UK there is no shortage of opportunities for career development. Would you undertake further training to gain promotion? I definitely want to continue learning throughout my career, both formally and informally. After completing the PDLGM there is the option of converting it into an MSc in Public Management – I have really enjoyed studying alongside my day job and would certainly be interested in carrying it on into a Masters. I would also consider more specialist training if I had a particular area of interest. What do you most like about what you do and are there any downsides? The opportunity to do challenging, meaningful work is what motivates me and it is wonderful to work with people who share that Public Sector ethos. Where I am based at the moment for example, everything is driven by the needs of the children of Reading and that is really inspiring. Being on the scheme has also been

invaluable for the contacts and networks it opens up – on my first day I was introduced to the Chief Executive and since then I have been able to work with directors and the Leader of the council as well as senior representatives from other private, public and third sector organisations. The PDLGM and contact with NMTs at other councils is a useful way of seeing the wider local government context. Although it is great to have such opportunities, the work can be daunting at first – at the start of each placement you are thrown in at the deep end, often working in areas which are completely new to you. Being young can also be a challenge when you have to influence, negotiate with, and manage people who may have worked in their particular area for many years. Being in a large complex organisation is also a challenge – progress can be slow at times and there is a fair bit of bureaucracy which can be frustrating. What skills do you think you need to succeed in this sector? Being proactive is essential - there are so many opportunities available and it is important to make the most of them. People skills are also vital – so much of my work has involved consultation with internal and external stakeholders, listening, negotiating, persuading and trying to collectively agree the best course of action. What advice would you give other graduates? I would encourage people to think seriously about local government as a career choice. Councils often get a bad press and people do not always realise just how much goes on in local government – from economic regeneration to social care to education and the arts local government is about far more than just bin collections. I would definitely recommend the NGDP scheme as an excellent way into the sector, but there are many other routes as well. If you are looking for job vacancies, www. jobsgopublic.com or individual council websites are a good place to start.

As the retail sector takes a massive hit due to the credit crunch, you may feel now is not the right time to be considering a job in sales or marketing. But as the British Retail Consortium says, the credit crunch will not affect the British economy forever. Richard Dodd, spokesman for the BRC, says: ‘Ultimately, there will be a revival, the question is about who survives and what kind of condition they are in at the end of it all.’ According to figures from the CBI, grocers are one group performing well despite the crunch after reporting a seven per cent rise in trade. Meanwhile, Anne Seaman, chief executive of Skillsmart Retail, the Sector Skills Council for retail, says: ‘While consumer confidence and spending is likely to drop in 2009, retail is still the UK’s largest private sector employer with nearly three million employees, and as such there is still a wide range of job opportunities in the sector. ‘Retailers such as Sainsbury’s, John Lewis and Marks and Spencer run, and continue to run, excellent graduate training schemes that offer comparatively high starting salaries, huge perks, and almost endless opportunities for career development. Senior retailers have told us that they have no plans to cut back

Photography: © iStockphoto.com

What do you actually do? I am based at Reading Borough Council and am currently on my fourth placement – I have previously worked in Business Transformation, Environmental Health, and Culture, and I am now working in the School Improvement Team, looking at ways of raising attainment at Key Stage 2. It is difficult to describe the typical work of an NMT as the placements cover strategic, frontline and support services and involve working in lots of different parts, of the council and even with external partners. However, NMTs are often in management level roles, working on projects, writing policies, managing partnerships and stakeholders, and developing solutions to challenging problems.

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wHAT’S NEW IN | retail, sales & marketing

on graduate recruitment dramatically, so while things may look bleak on the high streets, retailing is still a multi-billion pound industry offering huge potential and opportunities for graduates. If you are shopping around for a career, don’t let the credit crunch put you off retail.’ However, to succeed in a rapidly changing market, sales people will need to radically change their skills. Callidus Software, the leader in sales performance management, says a combination of more sophisticated customers, increased competition, and the economic downturn is driving an increase in professionalism and a move to more collaborative, customer-focused selling. In the future, the most successful salespeople will be those with more team-based and listening skills who put themselves in the customer’s shoes and develop long term relationships across the organisation. The move to more collaborative selling will also intensify the war for sales talent. Operating in a global market with transferable skills that enable them to move easily across sectors, the best salespeople will be in increasing demand. To recruit, motivate and retain them will take not just high salaries but flexible structures, personalised incentive plans, and the ability to progress their careers. ‘The superstar salespeople of

the future will have dramatically different demands than today,’ says Bill Schuh, VP for Europe, Callidus Software. ‘Rather than just looking for high salaries, they will also want a combination of professional support and career progression to enable them to deliver on their promise and rise up in the organisation. The changing face of sales means that today’s graduates should consider sales as a key route to the top in UK organisations.’ For marketers, tough times represent an opportunity to demonstrate their

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worth and the positive value they add to an organisation. David Thorp, Director of Research and Information at the Chartered Institute of Marketing, says: ‘There has never been a better time to be a professional marketer.  Marketers now have a key role to play in guiding companies through the challenging times ahead. Being at the very forefront of business means responsible marketing has more and more to offer both those embarking on a new career, and those already working their way up the marketing career ladder. Marketers now have the opportunity to be the key differential in their organisations’ commercial success.’ As a graduate you already have an advantage over other potential recruits as employers in the industry believe

Photography: © iStockphoto.com

having a degree gives you the right skill set for the job. This means you could start in a junior or even medium-weight sales and marketing role, and then by gaining as much experience as possible (and taking specialist sales and marketing courses part-time) quickly start working your way up the promotional ladder into roles such as account manager, account director, and middle-weight or senior sales executive. If you want to get on quickly you will need excellent soft skills, especially communication skills. You need to be a team player and have a keen grasp of strategy, buying cultures, value created sales and, in our increasingly technological age, the different selling platforms now available.

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We are an equal opportunities employer

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MANAGEMENT TRAINING SCHEME Will most industry-leading companies really make the most of your talents? You’ve spent all those years at uni, so the last thing you want is to end up as an expert in photocopying and making coffee. Better make sure that’s not your fate by joining the 1000 plus graduates who enter the Enterprise Management Training Scheme each year. We’re an international car rental company with over 440 locations across the UK, Ireland and Germany and a multi-billion pound turnover. And we’ll teach you how to run your own business in as little as two years. You’ll learn about everything from sales, marketing and customer service to operations and finance, so you can make crucial business decisions and reap the rewards. You could be promoted twice in one year. And earn in two years what could take you five elsewhere. We’re here to make the most of your potential, not let it wither and die. To apply, go to www.enterprisealive.co.uk/rwjan09 or call 0870 850 1232.

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wHAT’S NEW IN | retail, sales & marketing case studies

Jo Scales Age: 29 Degree and university: Leeds University, graduate in English Literature (2001) Distinction ‘Professional Diploma’ from the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM) (2007/8); Worldwide top student for Marketing Research and Information (2007/8) Job title: Senior Account Manager What do you actually do? KiS Marketing is a full service agency; I work with companies to plan and implement successful marketing campaigns dependent on their particular needs. I do this by segmenting and targeting relevant client audiences and positioning a service or product best to meet those customers. This could be working with our team of designers to create a whole new brand and suite of literature, researching and booking a media campaign, designing a website or writing press releases, or the script for a new DVD. It’s a really fastpaced environment that constantly changes dependant on the demands of our client base. How did you find out about your particular course? With no on-the-ground marketing experience, my current Managing Director was keen for me to understand the theory behind the work I was doing on a day-to-day basis. He recommended the Professional Diploma in Marketing as a good broad base, covering theory and practical application of Marketing Research, Planning, Communications and Management, over 18 months of evening classes. Would you undertake further training to progress your career? Considering the competitiveness of my sector and the current worries about the economy, additional training not only shows willingness to learn to an employer, but will also put you one step ahead of your competition. My next step will be to invest in further e-marketing and ‘online’ training, two media that are becoming more and more sophisticated, and replacing traditional and out of date media and marketing investment.

Why did you decide to go into this sector and what do you most like about what you do? I previously worked as an executive for an advertising firm and whilst I loved the account management side of things, the most impressive work and the loudest laughter always came from the mysterious marketing department downstairs. At KiS Marketing I get the best of both worlds as I can utilise my creative side, love of the English language, account management, and organisation skills in one role. People think that marketing is a glamorous profession – they are right to an extent, but to get ahead in a career that appeals to so many graduates, a serious marketer must really know their theory and latest sector news too. Are there any downsides? Having to write creatively or think of innovative ideas on demand is difficult but the more you understand a client the easier this becomes over time. Clients can be very demanding so it’s important to manage their expectations strictly and as much as possible. What strengths do you need to make a success of what you do? Good time management and personal motivation are key in juggling a sometimes 50-hour working week with a course that is as demanding as my English degree. Sacrificing weekends and evenings to write essays during term time was often nearly impossible, but the end result was definitely worth every hour not spent in the pub!

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within Head Office and our 27 selling branches. •A  ssisting in the implementation of our Internal Communications strategy prioritising and implementing key projects across the three communication channels face-to-face, printed, and electronic. •E  nsuring communication channels and processes are clear, monitoring and recommending revisions as needed •M  anaging and co-ordinating events and conferences where key strategic messages to the business are required •M  anaging and monitoring the Internal communications budget. Why did you decide to go into this sector? When I joined the John Lewis graduate scheme four years ago, I was based in a number of selling branches and worked my way up to a department manager of a fashion floor with over 70 Partners. Within this role, I found the communication process with my department fascinating and something I was particularly good at. As a co-owned business, it is integral that our Partners understand our brand and the key messages that arise from it, and from this the idea of communicating and engaging with a large audience struck me as a challenge and I relished the opportunity. When I moved to head office the internal communications team based within marketing was a great way of ensuring that I could use my experiences on the selling floor and develop new processes to assist in communication. How did you choose your course? I chose the course because it was academic and would challenge my thinking but give me some practical and creative opportunity as well. In terms of choosing to apply to the John Lewis graduate scheme, I was attracted to the brilliant ethos of the co-ownership model as well as the great reputation for investing in their workforce – from employee benefits, to training and career progression.

Alex Holliehead Age: 28 Degree and university: Warwick University BA English and Theatre Studies, MA Creative Media Enterprises Job Title: Internal Communications Coordinator, John Lewis What do you actually do? My job is to ensure appropriate and consistent internal communication is provided to all partners across the John Lewis division. This includes: • Developing and providing support on the delivery of effective communication both

Would you undertake further training to progress your career? Absolutely, if there was a course that would help develop my skills further I would definitely consider it. John Lewis are very supportive of further training to enhance skill sets and have a comprehensive internal learning and development programme as well as supporting external learning. What do you most like about what you do and are there any downsides? I have to say, I love most of my job. As it is a relatively new function in the business, I can design the role the way I see as appropriate. I love the co-ordination of events as this gives me the opportunity to be creative and work with external businesses. The only downside is that at certain times of the year it can get rather hectic and stressful. Good luck to anyone who chooses this career. It is not only great fun but also full of variety!

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wHAT’S NEW IN | technology

Technology

blend of technical, business and personal skills, but not necessarily a degree in computing (55 per cent of those entering the IT industry have a degree in another discipline). The strong shift from productled sales to services-led solutions has caused a huge growth in IT services and a high demand for professionals able to translate customers’ business requirements into tailored packages of services and products. Once a separate entity to IT, the Telecommunications

In order to stay ahead of its competitors the industry needs a constant influx of

sector now interconnects with it as many of the new technologies use broadband

new graduates who can be trained to become the managers and leaders of

data networks carrying high volumes of multimedia traffic. Because technologies

the future. A career in IT allows development of

are changing so rapidly, constant up-skilling is essential, which is why the

highly valued technical and business skills and you can work in almost any industry. To excel in most positions you will need a

sector is so exciting and appealing to those who like to feel challenged in their work environment. Karen Price, CEO of e-skills UK, the Sector Skills Council for Business and Information Technology, says: ‘Technology makes a significant contribution to the success of the UK in an increasingly competitive global economy. The UK has an internationally respected technology sector. In addition, IT improves productivity and efficiency for companies of all sizes; supporting the development and delivery of world class products and services in sectors as diverse as biotechnology, entertainment, and financial services. It is therefore not surprising that the sector continues to grow.

• E  mployment in the IT industry is predicted to grow at 2.5 per cent p.a. • 2  6,800 people a year come into the industry from education (graduate level and higher) • N  early 1 in 20 people employed in the UK work in the IT & Telecoms workforce (1.5 million people). • 8  88,000 people work in the IT & Telecoms industry itself and a further 588,000 work as IT or Telecoms professionals in other industries. • T he biggest employers by industry (outside the IT & Telecoms industry) are: Financial Services, Public Administration, Education and Health Manufacturing Taken from E-Skills Report: IT And Telecoms Insights 2008

‘As is happening in many other sectors, the number of jobs advertised in IT has started to decline in recent months. It is important to view these figures in context: demand remains strong for people who combine business and technical skills. Furthermore, many organisations are turning to technology to help them weather the recession. IT remains one of the most vibrant and exciting industry sectors to work in with a great deal to offer capable and creative graduates in all disciplines.’ Visit www.e-skills.com for more information

Photography: © iStockphoto.com

The UK has an enviable worldwide reputation for being at the cutting edge of IT and Telecoms. The IT and Telecoms workforce here is highly skilled and has a great track record in developing IT-enabled business solutions, which are key to the UK’s success in technologyintensive sectors such as financial services and public administration. However, the economic downturn has hit the Internet economy hard, according to the latest available OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) estimates. The IT Outlook 2008 says that the IT industry is likely to have grown by four per cent at most in 2008. But with the forecast for the global economy worsening and business and consumer confidence plummeting, growth will remain flat or decline in 2009. Some sectors are expected to weather the storm better than others. For instance, spending on software and IT services, including outsourcing by governments and business, is likely to continue. Internet-related sales and investments in infrastructure, driven by demand for high-speed Internet from consumers and business, will remain solid although some infrastructure investments may be held over due to the credit crisis.

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wHAT’S NEW IN | technology case studies

Macarena Blanco Age: 30 Degree and university: BSc Physics, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Spain PhD Nanotechnology, University College London, UK Job Title: Consultant at CHP Consulting. What do you actually do? I am currently part of the development team on one of our projects. Typically, I would be working on the development of a software solution engineered to optimise the business processes employed by our clients. It is a well organised team effort. The work of each member of the team must fit in like the pieces of a complex puzzle. To be able to do this effectively, you have to be in constant communication with the other members of the team, make sure that you finish your work in time, and never lose sight of the bigger picture. What attracted you to this sector? What attracted me most to IT consultancy is that it offers the opportunity to learn how the core dynamics of businesses really work, and it allows you to make an impact across a whole organisation and see the results of your work in a relatively short time. How did you find out about your course? I looked for PhD positions in London related to my speciality in Physics, Electronic Devices and Control. The position I took was advertised by the London Centre for Nanotechnology in www.jobs.ac.uk.

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Would you undertake further study to progress your career? Yes, of course - there are plenty of training opportunities at work, both internally and externally. At the moment I use these opportunities to strengthen my technical abilities. Further ahead, I will look into courses which enable me to improve my managerial skills. What do you most like about what you do and are there any downsides? The atmosphere at work is very good. It is a challenging environment - as soon as you feel comfortable with what you are doing, you are thrown into learning something new and you are expected to pick it up quickly. You are not on your own though - there is the right amount of support for you to succeed. It is a consultancy job and most of the time you are expected to work at the client site and this might not always be in a glamorous location. However, working directly with the client gives you a much better understanding of what they really need, which is a great advantage and allows us to deliver a higher quality product. What skills do you think you need to succeed? Having strong analytical skills is crucial but what really makes the difference is having a very positive attitude and a natural tendency to persevere until a solution is found. What advice would you give other graduates coming into this sector? Firstly, look for a company that will invest in your growth and, secondly, use every opportunity to learn something new.

Shoaib Kamran Age: 29 Degree and university: IT Masters, Coventry, Intelligent Transportation Systems PhD, Coventry Job Title: Technical Manager, T@lecom What do you actually do? As part of the PhD programme I did a placement known as a Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) with T@lecom -- a leading wireless communications company based at Coventry University’s Technology Park. The placement enabled me to get involved with the company’s key research and product development projects. I have helped design a more effective logistics system for a range of courier companies, and a satellite tracking device to improve NHS patient transport systems. Would you undertake further training to progress your career? Working through a KTP meant that I have already received management training, which continues to develop my skill set alongside my studies.

Photography: © iStockphoto.com

What do you most like about what you do? I’ve always been passionate about technology and from day one I was given responsibility for helping develop the technology side of the business. The ICT industry is very fast-moving, so there are always exciting new things to learn and opportunities to develop new products. What does the future hold? Because of my hard work and determination, my placement has now turned into a full-time job at T@lecom, where I am now a Technical Manager leading a team of four engineers. As T@lecom continues to grow, I hope to further my career with the company. n

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S

cotland is more than haggis, bagpipes, whisky and countryside. A country

Economy Scotland’s economy is founded on a range of industries including a world class financial services sector, a world-leading life sciences sector, a thriving technology sector, a renowned food and drinks sector (including whisky naturally), and a flourishing tourism sector. Although there has been upheaval in global financial markets, Edinburgh’s financial services are well protected due to the diverse nature of the sector in the capital.  Edinburgh is strong in fund management, life assurance, insurance, asset management and asset servicing as well as banking, and has a strong base of large multinationals and smaller boutique businesses.  As recently as November 2008, Edinburgh actually improved its reputation as a global financial centre, and has seen Tesco confirm its banking arm will be headquartered in the city. Scotland is also the birthplace of the Grand Theft Auto computer game, the Bionic Hand (i-Limb) and, of course, Dolly the Sheep. There’s no shortage of opportunities for graduates to embark on a great career in Scotland. Entertainment The old adage of ‘work hard, play hard’ is no stranger to Scotland and the Scots are no shrinking violets! Edinburgh and

steeped in history and proud of its influence around the globe,

Glasgow are consistently rated in the top twenty cities in the world for culture,

Scotland continues to punch well above its weight when considering

entertainment and nightlife.

world class companies, groundbreaking innovation and

Natural Environment One of Scotland’s selling points as a

urban living. For a start Scotland has vibrant cities, large enough to attract the best of international talent to gigs, nightclubs, sporting events, culture and food, but small enough to retain a sense of identity and ensure all its residents feel ‘part’ of its community.  92 per cent of Scottish graduates find jobs in Scotland demonstrating the strength of the jobs market here, and the low commute times means there’s more time for family, friends and leisure pursuits.  The Mercer Quality of Living index has Glasgow second to London in the UK, and the cost of living in all Scottish cities is lower than London.

SCOTLAND IN NUMBERS •Scotland is the second largest country in Great Britain. It is bordered on the west and north by the Atlantic Ocean, on the east by the North Sea, and on the south by England. •It is about twice the size of the Netherlands and almost the same size as South Carolina in the US. Scotland has 787 islands, 130 of which are inhabited. •It has a population of around 5 million (January 2002) •Its capital is Edinburgh (450,000 inhabitants) and its major cities are Glasgow (580,000 inhabitants), Dundee (150,000), Aberdeen (210,000) and Inverness (65,000) Source: VisitScotland

Photography: Courtesy of Talentscotland.com

Scotland The Brave

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regional spotlight | scotland

destination to live and work is that people can easily reside in the country and commute to the city. Commuting times in Scotland are lower than the UK average and the public transport system is generally very reliable. The rugged landscape provides the perfect backdrop for any number of outdoor pursuits such as rock climbing, hill walking, and white water rafting. You can be hurtling down the World Cup Mountain Biking course in Fort William by day, and relaxing in a city rooftop bar drinking cocktails by night! Scotland’s Cities Aberdeen Aberdeen is Scotland’s third largest city with over 200,000 residents. Traditional industries such as fishing and farming still flourish here, but Aberdeen’s buoyant modern economy is fuelled by the oil industry, earning the city the epithet of ‘Oil Capital of Europe’, however renewable energy will play a large part in its future. Dundee The fourth largest city in Scotland with a population of around 150,000, Dundee is described as a city of ‘discovery, diversity

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and dynamism’. Dundee is known for its life sciences companies and digital businesses such as Real Time Worlds, makers of the Grand Theft Auto computer game. Edinburgh Scotland’s capital has the strongest economy of any UK city outside London. Education, health, finance, retailing, and tourism are the main industries. The centre of the city is divided into the Old Town and the New Town, both of which are World Heritage sites and are steeped in atmosphere, and endlessly fascinating to wander around. Glasgow Glasgow is one of the friendliest cities on earth. The largest Scottish city, Greater Glasgow has over 1.75 million people living in and around its centre. Some of the main industries in the city include finance and business services, communications, creative industries, healthcare, and tourism. Inverness The social, cultural, regional and administrative centre of the Highlands,

Inverness is growing at an unprecedented rate. High-tech businesses play a large part in the city’s economy, including many medical research companies such as LifeScan. Perth Perth’s compact centre is home to some of the best speciality shopping in Scotland and large household names such as Scottish & Southern Energy and whisky makers, The Edrington Group. Stirling Stirling is Scotland’s youngest city – and it has a lot going for it. There’s a renowned university spread across one of the most beautiful campuses in Europe. Stirling is also a centre for local government, higher education, retail, and construction.

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Photography: Courtesy of Talentscotland.com

With thanks to TalentScotland.  Visit www. talentscotland.com for job opportunities, relocation advice and information on living and working in Scotland.

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regional spotlight | case study

designing adverts for placement in trade publications, direct mail campaigns, organising and attending exhibitions, writing editorial and PR, and maintaining the company website. I also design and create all promotional literature and point-of-sale material. Why did you decide to go into this sector? During my first couple of years at university, I studied general business and management modules. Within some of these modules, marketing was included. I developed an interest in this and started to tailor my final years to include marketing related subjects as the core elements to my course. I was interested in Heriot Watt as a university and liked the campus. They offered the kind of courses I wanted to take. Would you undertake further study to progress your career? I am interested in studying for a Postgraduate Degree in Marketing, in particular, through the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM). What do you most like about what you do? I enjoy the variety my role brings me. We deal with most marketing activity in-house. Very rarely do we get external agencies involved. This allows me to be involved with everything from strategy to daily marketing tasks like designing an advert or sales brochure.

Fiona Bell Age: 25 University: Heriot Watt University, Edinburgh Degree: MA(Hons) Management with Marketing Work Title: Marketing Manager, Turner Access, a leading European manufacturer and supplier of scaffolding and access equipment to the global marketplace. Fiona found her placement through the Graduates For Business scheme. The Graduates for Business programme gives graduates the chance to work full-time for some of Scotland’s most forward-looking companies, earning a salary and applying their degree skills to a specific, challenging project. The scheme is open to graduates across a wide range of degree disciplines. It can be accessed throughout the year, with placements varying between three and twelve months. Find out more and apply online at: www.scottish-enterprise.com/ graduates What do you actually do? I am responsible for the day-to-day running of the Marketing Department. My principle aim is to promote the Turner Access brand and raise the company profile. My role includes creating promotional strategies for the company as a whole, and for our individual product and service range. General marketing activity includes creating advertising schedules,

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What advice would you give graduates wishing to enter this sector? My advice would be to stay open-minded and do not rely on theory you read in your marketing textbooks. Yes, the theory forms the basis of what we do as marketing people; however, it must be applied within the context of the industry you work within. For example, the fast moving consumer goods market (FMCG) is very different from the construction industry. Although marketing concepts are similar, the sales and marketing strategy will differ greatly. Marketing activity you find successful in one industry may not provide the same results in another. Therefore, make sure you have a good understanding of the industry and your customer base. Is there anything you wish to add? I would like to offer the following advice to recent graduates. Don’t give up. When you first graduate it can be very difficult, often disheartening and frustrating finding that perfect job. I spent six months working in retail before I was offered a job that related to my degree. My lifeline was the Graduates for Business scheme run by the Scottish Enterprise. After only three interviews at different companies, I was offered the position of Marketing Executive at Turner Access. After a year’s placement, I was offered permanent employment, and three years later, promoted to Marketing Manager. n

What skills do you think you need to succeed? Understanding your target market is an essential skilll. For a successful marketing campaign it must be designed with your target market in mind. Another important skill is organisation. Everything I do involves a plan and a schedule/timetable for completion. When launching a new product, a launch strategy is an invaluable tool. This allows me to organise everything from the advertising to the sales material needed to support the launch within the timetable set out. A good eye for detail is another important skill. I consider myself a bit of a perfectionist and won’t let anything be distributed unless I am completely happy with the design, layout and content. When designing literature, adverts and mailers, it is important to consider corporate branding.

don't give up. when you first graduate it can be very difficult, and often disheartening and frustrating finding that perfect first job.

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the master plan

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postgrad | overview

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The UK now has more postgraduate students than ever before. However, undertaking further study doesn’t necessarily guarantee employment. So, Real World asks: is completing a postgraduate course really worth it? Catherine Watson investigates.

D

reference from your tutor. Alternatively, you could try to obtain funds from an employer. If you can show that further

postgraduate qualification alone is rarely enough, but a well chosen course complete with relevant work experience

study will benefit the company that you work for (or have worked for), then

and the right attitude can pay dividends.’

they may be willing to pay all or part of your fees. However, this may lead

Health and medicine One area of employment where a

you to be contractually bound to the company for a specified period.

postgraduate qualification is generally necessary for career progression is

versus a research-based qualification. Secondly, you will probably find that

Professional view

health and medicine. However, competition is fierce for entry onto

course fees are far higher than at undergraduate level, and to fund a postgraduate course you won’t be eligible to get help from the Student Loans Company. However, there are a number of avenues you could go down to obtain funds. If you have achieved a 2.1 or higher in your first degree then you might be eligible to apply for Research Council sponsorship. However, their funds are limited and they will only sponsor the students who display the most potential. To make your application you will need to fill out a challenging form, accompanied by a strong

So are there any professions that value further study more than others? ‘Postgrads can be found working across all sectors and at all levels and it’s impossible to say which professions place the greatest “value” on postgraduate study,’ says one of Warwick University’s careers consultants, Helen Stringer. She adds: ‘It is important to differentiate those professions where a postgrad qualification is essential (law, teaching, and academia) to those sectors where postgrad study may be advantageous but not mandatory (civil service, social research, and niche roles within the financial sector.) A

many postgraduate courses in this sector. Consequently you will usually be required to have an undergraduate qualification already in this area. Most research-based courses require applicants to hold a related undergraduate degree. For example, if you hold a chemistry or biology degree, you will typically pursue further qualifications in a more specialised area, such as drug chemistry or molecular biology. Postgraduate medical research is also becoming an increasingly important area; it covers everything from ageing and health, to nanoscale science.

Photography: © iStockphoto.com

eciding to continue your academic life with further study is a choice that needs careful consideration. For starters you will need to weigh up the pros and cons of a taught course

»

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postgrad | overview

Arts and humanities Postgraduate degrees in the arts and humanities cover a broad church – from archaeology to theatre. In terms of obtaining funding, the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) is responsible for administering three schemes for postgraduate awards as follows: • Research preparation master’s scheme (where the focus is on advanced study and research training explicitly intended to provide a foundation for further study at doctoral level). • Professional preparation master’s scheme (with a focus on developing high-level skills and competencies for professional practice). • Doctoral competition (to provide funding for full- or part-time study leading to a doctoral degree). (See the box for more details about the AHRC.) Geology If you have studied geology at undergraduate level it is quite likely that you will be considering full- or part-time further study. Examples of courses available include: an MSc in petroleum geology, petroleum geophysics, or hydrogeology. Or you could go down an even more specialised route. For example, the University of Exeter’s Camborne School of Mines (CSM) was

range of specialised programmes. Of note is its renewable energy research group which is undergoing ‘significant investment’ and which CSM hopes will become a UK leader in its field over the next few years. Helen Stringer recommends students contemplate the following before embarking on a postgraduate study application: • ‘Find out if you need to invest time and money in further study. Could you enter your chosen career at graduate level?’ • ‘Cost. Tuition fees and living expenses vary widely and funding is hard to come by, especially for master’s programmes.’ • ‘Entry requirements. Most courses will ask for a 2:2 or 2:1, but some of the more prestigious institutions are looking for academic high flyers. A borderline 2:2 or 2:1 may not be enough. Be confident

Postgraduate resources www.ahrc.ac.uk The Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) supports world-class research that furthers our understanding of human culture and creativity. The AHRC funds research on a very wide range of subjects from traditional humanities to creative and performing arts. www.rcuk.ac.uk Each year the Research Councils invest around £2.8 billion in research covering the full spectrum of academic disciplines from the medical and biological sciences to astronomy, physics, chemistry and engineering, social sciences, economics, environmental sciences, and the arts and humanities. www.whatuni.com Whatuni is the alternative online prospectus created by students for the benefit of future students. If you’re a future student, then read the reviews, talk to other people thinking of the same options as you, and ask for more information from the universities that you’re considering.

but also realistic about your potential.’ • ‘Course structure. What is the split between project work, individual assignments, and examinations? Consider your own working and learning style, and aim for a course that accommodates these preferences.’ • ‘Check the destinations statistics to make sure the course you want to do will allow you to compete in the job market.’ ‘A postgraduate qualification no longer has the mark of distinction it once did,’ remarks Stringer. ‘As such, it is incumbent on the applicant to really “sell” the benefits of postgrad study. Postgrads should try and relate the skills gained from postgrad study to employer requirements; this will mitigate the impression that postgraduate students are “overly specialised”. Finally, do not undertake postgrad study simply to compensate for a low degree classification at undergraduate level.'

Photography: © iStockphoto.com

established in 1888 and boasts a multidisciplinary department offering a

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postgrad | case study

postgraduate degree because I felt it was an essential step in order to pursue a career in scientific research. What most attracted you to this particular course? I decided to do a four-year PhD including an MRes because this programme gave me the chance to work in different labs, using new techniques, and meeting different people before choosing my PhD project. What did your degree entail? Could you mention any modules you took? I did a biochemistry degree before embarking on my PhD. The modules in the first two years were very general, for example molecular biology, molecular cell biology, biological chemistry, protein and enzymes, physical biochemistry, and immunology. The final year modules were more specific and I could choose what I preferred. I took cell signalling and protein sorting, cellular neuroscience, bioreactor and bioprocessing technology, biotechnology and business.

Silvia Colucci Age: 21 University and degree: PhD: Life Sciences 4-year Doctoral Training Programme, Imperial She is in her first year (MRes year). Why did you decide to study a postgraduate degree? I decided to study a

Did you write a dissertation and if so, what was it on? I wrote a dissertation based on an eight-week project. The title of my thesis was ‘Defining which brain cells express the developmentally regulated variable alternative spliced exon (VASE) isoform of the neural cell adhesion molecule (NCAM)’.

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What was been the biggest challenge you have faced in studying for a postgraduate degree? The biggest challenge I have faced so far is realising that some experiments just don’t work and despite your best efforts they never will work. Nobody really knows why. How did you fund your course? I am funded by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) and the Medical Research Council (MRC). In what ways do you hope studying for your degree will help you with your career? I am confident that doing a PhD is the best way to learn how to carry out scientific research. It gives you the chance to learn very useful techniques that are not only relevant to your own specific research. It also gives you the opportunity to work with very experienced people who are always there to help you. What advice do you have for students considering postgraduate study? I would strongly advise people who are interested in pursuing a scientific career to consider postgraduate study. In particular, I would strongly recommend a programme like the MRes I have undertaken, which gives them the chance to experience different things before choosing a specific area of interest. n

Postgraduate Options Opportunities for Postgraduate Study in Science, Engineering, Medicine and Business Consistently rated amongst the world’s best universities, Imperial College London is a science-based institution with a reputation for excellence in teaching and research. Imperial is spread over several different campuses, and organised on a faculty structure which promotes interdisciplinary study and research. We offer an extensive programme of postgraduate taught courses in disciplines allied to Engineering, Life Sciences, Medicine, Physical Sciences, Business and Humanities (science related). Our taught courses lead to Master of Science (MSc) and Master of Research (MRes), Master of Business Administration (MBA), Master in Public Health (MPH) and Master of Education (Surgical Education) qualifications, as well as Certificates of Advanced Study. We have wide ranging opportunities for MPhil/PhD and MD (Res) research studies, including four-year (1+3) programmes in which students gain a Masters qualification at the end of the first year, and then go on to study for a PhD. To find out more about our postgraduate taught courses and research opportunities, please visit our website at: http://www3.imperial.ac.uk/pgprospectus Once you are ready to apply, you should make your application online. If you have difficulty in submitting the online application, please contact Registry Support on +44 (0)20 7594 8031, during office hours (09:30 to 17:00 UK time). For general enquiries, please visit: http://www3.imperial.ac.uk/registry/enquiries/applicantenquiries Valuing diversity and committed to equality of opportunity

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19/1/09 15:27:41


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teaching | overview

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what's your talent?

Photography: © iStockphoto.com

‘T

urn your talent to teaching’ is the latest slogan from the government to attract people into the world of teaching. If you are considering becoming a teacher be

special school in England after training to teach in one of the ‘priority’ secondary school subjects. These are: maths, science, information and communications technology, engineering and manufacturing, design and technology, modern foreign languages, religious education, and music. Maths and science attract £5,000 and all other priority subjects £2,500.

prepared to get your head round lots of acronyms! For a start, to teach you’ll

Here comes the science bit

need qualified teacher status (QTS), which is almost always done by means

Although the number of science teachers recruited for 2008/09 exceeded

of completing a programme of initial teacher training (ITT). Most prospective

the government’s target, there is still a lot more work to be done to meet the

teachers will undertake a one-year Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE). You can do your ITT through a school, while employed at a school, or through a higher education institution such as a university or college.

necessary recruitment levels. Graham Holley, chief executive of the Training and Development Agency for Schools (TDA) reports: ‘Over the next two years we need to recruit an additional 6,600 science teachers to meet the expected demand from schools.’ The TDA has launched a campaign to attract more science teachers – which can be seen at www.youtube.com/tdacampaign. According to the TDA the number of people enquiring about classroom training has gone up by almost 34 per cent since the start of the economic downturn. Between March and December 2008 its website had over one million hits – an increase of a quarter of a million from the same

Golden hellos As an incentive to draw graduates into the teaching profession, the government offers postgraduate students who have trained to teach certain subjects at secondary level a one-off taxable bonus called a ‘golden hello’ once they’ve completed their induction year. Golden hellos are available to eligible newlyqualified teachers taking up a job in a maintained school or non-maintained

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Photography: © iStockphoto.com

Teaching is a great way to capitalise on the knowledge you have gained during your time at university. Not only that, it can also be an extremely rewarding career – both financially and emotionally reports Catherine Watson.

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Routes into Teaching

15

Routes into Teaching

15

STUDENT PROFILE

STUDENT PROFILE

Manish Patel Manish Patel

Year 1, MEd Teaching Studies PT

Manish Patel undertook his PGCE at the University of Birmingham, Year 1, MEd Teaching specialising Studies PT in Science Physics. He is now into his third year of teaching in a local secondary school. “The University Birmingham has one ofatthe best reputations all the Midlands universities Manish Patel of undertook his PGCE the University ofofBirmingham, specialising and that is what first attracted the into PGCEhis course. myteaching career in education to in Science Physics. He me is to now thirdI wanted year of in a local have the best school. possible start. Even though there were universities that were closer and more secondary convenient for me, I knew I had made thetheright Oneofofallthe pointsuniversities about the “The University of Birmingham has one of bestchoice. reputations thebest Midlands course was of wonderful on the course, including tutor.in education to and that is the whatvariety first attracted me topeople the PGCE course. I wanted mythe career “I am currently teaching a successful secondary school inthat Sandwell. Having just have the best possible start. at Even though there were universities were closer and more gained my first promotion science department fullyofintend to make school convenient for me, I knewwithin I had the made the right choice. IOne the best pointsthe about the proud my the achievements. courseofwas variety of wonderful people on the course, including the tutor.

“Once I have established myself as an outstanding teacher, I would like to move in to a management role. I have opportunity “Oncetaken I have the established myselftoas extend my studiesteacher, further through an outstanding I would the like Mto Ed (Teaching course role. at move in to aStudies) management the University Birmingham whichto I have takenof the opportunity I extend see asmy an studies investment in through my future further the career. By part funding thecourse courseat M Ed (Teaching Studies) my haveof demonstrated that the school University Birmingham which they an investment too.” I seesee as itanasinvestment in my future

“I am currently teaching at a successful secondary school in Sandwell. Having just gained my first promotion within the science department I fully intend to make the school proud of my achievements.

career. By part funding the course my school have demonstrated that they see it as an investment too.”

“Having just gained my first promotion within

Manish Patel

Manish Patel

the science department I fully intend to make “Having just gained my first promotion within the school proud of my achievements...” the science department I fully intend to make

the school proud of my achievements...”

“I run a successful Science and Engineering club after school that is supported by STEMNET, a DCSF funded body. I aim to remain at my school which is part of the Building Schools for the Future project. This investment in the school will attract staff and students alike. Science and Engineering club after school that is supported by “I run a successful

STEMNET, a DCSF funded body. I aim to remain at my school which is part of the Building Schools for the Future project. This investment in the school will attract staff and students alike.

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100% of our secondary maths PGCE trainees who completed our course successfully in 2008, gained teaching employment and it’s a similar story for our PGCE trainees in other subjects. So if you are enthusiastic about education and interested in gaining a higher level qualification with great job prospects, take a look at our one year full-time PGCE programmes, our flexible part-time PGCE option or our three year full-time Primary undergraduate programme. Scarborough Campus • Primary 3-7 years.

Hull Campus • Primary 5-11 years also with MFL (funded placements in France & Germany) • Secondary – Biology, Physics, Chemistry, Business Studies, Geography, History, Mathematics, English, Modern Foreign Languages (French, German, Spanish, studied singularly or in any combination) & Religious Education. We offer £200 tax-free per week for a Mathematics Enhancement Course

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teaching | overview

Teaching English as a foreign language Although teaching English as a foreign language (TEFL) is often seen as simply a way to fill a gap year, it can in fact be a rewarding career. You have two options – either you can obtain a TEFL certificate prior to leaving the country, or you can complete a TEFL course en route. Once you have been teaching for a while, you can opt for either a commercial or academic route. For example, Cactus (a private organisation that raises awareness of TEFL) reports that as a Director of Studies: ‘you can begin supporting other teachers, planning courses and materials, timetabling, and generally providing academic leadership.’

period the previous year. The agency also reported that people with jobs in finance who were increasingly worried about redundancies may look at a career change and choose teaching because it offers security. Male role models Research from the TDA also shows that

male primary school teachers have acted as role models to one in two men. However, figures released by the General Teaching Council indicate that men account for only 13 per cent of registered primary school teachers. BBC TV’s clinical psychologist, Dr Tanya Byron, says: ‘The need for strong male role models as constants in the lives of young children is more apparent than ever in light of the increasing numbers of children experiencing breakdown of the traditional family unit.’ Wherever your talent lies, you might find that the best way to use it is through becoming a teacher. For more information about becoming a teacher visit www.tda.gov.uk. Why not have a go at the site’s fantastic interactive interview to help you decide if teaching is for you! In addition, you can visit a classroom, which can be done through the open schools programme in England. Or you could try a three-day taster course, including a one-day

North of the border The quickest and most popular way of qualifying as a secondary teacher in Scotland, if you have a degree in the subject you want to teach, is to do a one-year Postgraduate Diploma in Education (PGDE) teaching course. You can also study some PGDE (Secondary) courses by part-time or distance learning. Alternatively, if you don’t have a degree in the subject you want to teach, you can do a four-year undergraduate BEd course or a combined degree course at a Scottish university.  As a new teacher who trained in Scotland, you’re guaranteed full-time employment for your first year. Uniquely in Scotland you can undertake an Induction Scheme. You’ll pick up valuable classroom experience under the guidance of your experienced mentor.

school placement to help decide whether you should apply for initial teacher training. Also, read our case studies to see why other graduates have opted to join the teaching profession.

»

Photography: © iStockphoto.com

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Join our Talent Pool ... Surrey is a great place to live and work and offers excellent opportunities for career progression. We have some of the best results in the country and many very good schools. We aim to be at the forefront of new ideas and innovation so that staff and pupils in Surrey schools benefit from the best teaching, learning and development to be found anywhere in the country. You will be supported in your first year as an NQT by our school induction programme. To search and apply for teaching vacancies and to learn about living and working in Surrey, go to www.surreyschools.com. To register your interest and make your details available to Surrey schools on our Talentpool, go to http://surrey.talentpool.eteach.com. VT Four S Ltd, Surrey County Council’s joint venture partner, Bay Tree Avenue, Kingston Road, Leatherhead KT22 7UE

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teaching | case studies

after all, my prospective employers. Being mentored by people who had spent many years in local schools gave the lectures a sense of personalisation and relevance. Studying at Wolverhampton allowed me to develop strong relationships with other PGCE students. I knew where to access support when needed, and I was able to collaborate with interesting and inspiring guest lecturers. The facilities in the new education building at the Walsall Campus are state of the art and provide a motivational learning environment.

Leanne Gould Age: 22 Degree and university: PGCE Science, Wolverhampton Work Title: Newly Qualified Teacher (NQT) What do you actually do? I currently work as a NQT in a local secondary school in Wolverhampton while continuing my academic study to gain a masters degree in education through the University of Wolverhampton. I now recognise the importance of the skills I acquired during my PGCE, which have helped me develop self-discipline, efficiency and organisation to manage both a full time job and postgraduate study. Were you always interested in teaching as a career? After thoroughly enjoying studying science in higher education I couldn’t imagine continuing life without learning more about the subject, and I have always enjoyed being able to relay my knowledge to others. For this reason I decided to pursue a career in teaching. How did you find out about the teaching sector? After considering all of the optional routes into the profession I decided that a PGCE was the best course for me as I felt it provided the level of support I would need while beginning a new career. The structure of the PGCE allows you to participate in school life while being an active part of a university. The course is organised to give students practical experience as they enhance their knowledge of teaching academically and also professionally. Although my PGCE year was very challenging I felt that the mentors at university of Wolverhampton were very supportive, equipping me for life in the classroom. I chose to study at Wolverhampton as it had been named one of the top universities for teacher training and worked in close partnership with local schools and communities which were,

What do you most like about what you do? I relish life as a teacher; it’s a career with flexibility, a job that allows you to exert your personality and creativity. Through association with the University of Wolverhampton I am proud to be involved in an organisation called ‘creative partnerships’ which supports teachers through innovative teaching approaches and has given me many opportunities to be creative and inspirational in my first term of teaching. As hardly any years have passed since I was a secondary school student myself, I understand that science needs to be brought to life for pupils to experience.

the structure of the pgce allows you to participate in school life while being an active part of the university. Scott Eastwood

Degree and university: Mathematics and Statistics, University of Southampton (2004), PGCE, Institute of Learning, University of Hull (2007 – 8) Work Title: Newly qualified teacher (NQT) Secondary Maths. Were you always interested in teaching as a career? I began a career as an accountant, starting at the bottom as an accounts assistant. Teaching had always been something I had been interested in, but at the time I didn’t feel I was in a position financially to continue studying full-time. I soon realised that life in an office was not for me, doing the same things day in day out, and after 18 months I decided to pursue something else. I had kept the ‘bug’ for studying while working as an accountant by studying at university after work once a week, and after realising what a buzz helping my younger sister with her homework generated, I decided to give up my day job and enrolled for the PGCE at the University of Hull.

What did you most enjoy about your teacher training experience at the University of Hull? I enjoyed being back in university surroundings, meeting a wide range of new people all with the same goal. The PGCE group as a whole and the mathematics element included newly graduated people, middle-aged people and people like myself, who were somewhere in the middle. This resulted in many varied views on teaching and styles of teaching, with each member of the group having their own role. Mine, apparently, was to be the joker of the group; I have the certificate to prove it! I thoroughly enjoyed all aspects of the course and have made some extremely close friends form it. How are you finding teaching now? There is no doubt it is hard work but it is also the best decision I could have made. No two days are ever the same, each posing their own new challenges. The pupils are challenging and at the same time rewarding. They are constantly surprising you and the good moments definitely make up for the bad. I am particularly enjoying building a relationship with my form group. What would you say to anyone thinking about a possible career in, or change of career to, secondary teaching? Do it but make sure you are prepared to devote most evenings to your work. The school day does not end when the final bell rings! You are never too old to become a teacher, in fact, life experience is a definite bonus, but I advise visiting a school so you know what they are like now. Making a connection with teenagers is such a buzz; I can’t see myself having any other career.

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Enhance your future in education The University of Wolverhampton is one of Britain’s largest and most established education providers, with high national ranking and a record of continuing excellence: ■

Grade 1 in OfSTED inspections for primary and secondary Initial Teacher Training for Management and Quality Assurance and Teaching

In 2007 CEER ranked us 2nd out of 76 UK universities for teacher trainee employment success

We provide full-time secondary teaching courses in the following subjects; English, Mathematics, Science, Physical Education, Modern Foreign Languages, Business Education, Psychology, Design & Technology, ICT. Our Flexible route is designed to meet the needs of people who, for whatever reason, require the benefits of a flexible study programme. Subjects available to study in secondary education are Mathematics, Science, Modern Foreign Languages, Business Education, Design & Technology, ICT. Subjects in the PGCE Post-Compulsory Education cover a wide range from English to media to construction. This full-time one-year course confers Qualified Teacher Learner Status (QTLS) for the post-compulsory sector. Placements are part of all the PGCE courses, but prior work experience will have helped you to know that this is the career for you.

www.wlv.ac.uk/sed/teachertraining Continuing Professional Development (CPD) for Education Professionals: Visit www.wlv.ac.uk/sed/cpd for a current list of training opportunities. Tel: 01902 322821. E-Mail: sed@wlv.ac.uk Website: www.wlv.ac.uk/sed

NQT’s

...come to Croydon

Croydon is is aa large, large, diverse, diverse,South SouthLondon Londonborough boroughand anda a vibrant place vibrant place in in which whichto tolive liveand andwork. work.Transportation Transportation links are links are excellent excellentand andyou youcan canbe beininthe thecentre centre ofof London London within15 within 15 minutes. minutes.

There is is aa huge hugevariety varietyofofschools schoolsand anda astrong strong commitmentto commitment toproviding providingaafully fullycomprehensive comprehensive induction induction programme for programme for NQTs NQTsand andexcellent excellentCPD CPDopportunities. opportunities. Our centralised centralisedrecruitment recruitmentprocess processoffers offers a supportive a supportive environment first teaching post environmentin inwhich whichtotoapply applyfor foryour your first teaching post. Primary: Teachers Teachers are are invited invitedto toapply applytotoour ourpool pool– –closing closingdates datesare are January March Primary: January 3131 forfor March interviewand interview andFebruary February28 29for forMay Mayinterview. interview. AllAll candidates candidates areare invited invited to an to interview an interview and and feedback. receive feedback. Secondary: To be included in Secondary: in the theNQT NQTdatabase databasesend sendyour yourapplication applicationtotothe the address address below. below. Teachers’ details details are arethen thencirculated circulatedtotoallallschools schools who who will will contact contact youyou directly. directly. There There is no is no date although althoughyou youshould shouldaim aimfor forthe theend end February able to access highest closing date ofof February to to be be able to access thethe highest number of number ofvacancies. vacancies. Candidates can Candidates can download downloadan anapplication applicationasaswell wellasasfind find more more teacher teacher information information on our our website websiteat atwww.croydon.gov.uk www.croydon.gov.uk An NQT NQT information informationpack packcan canalso alsobe beobtained obtainedfrom: from: Teacher Recruitment Recruitmentand andRetention Retention 7th Floor, 7th Floor, Leon Leon House, House,233 233High HighStreet, Street,Croydon, Croydon,CRO CRO9XT 9XT Email: teacher.recruitment@croydon.gov.uk Email: teacher.recruitment@croydon.gov.uk or

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ensuring they are doing a good job and that all of our members are happy.  Throughout the afternoon I will also hold various different appointments to help aid the growth of the centre and maintain customer relations. These include taster sessions for new members and parent meetings for existing ones.

Alexis Humphrey Age: 25 Degree subject & University: English at Bangor University Job Title: Centre Director, Explore Learning

Do you have any advice for graduates wanting to come into this sector? For people looking to start now it is important they have had some experience with children in any capacity at all, that way they will know you are dedicated and confident when communicating with them.  Any volunteering you can do while at university, or actively being a member of a society, will help you add world experience to you application, and will often give you skills in leadership and promotion.  Really use you application form and interviews to sell yourself, Explore Learning will really want to see your passion and personality shine through.

What do you most like about what you do? My role is incredibly varied and means that I get exposure to all elements of the centre operations.  Each member in the management team of three have their own roles to take complete charge of and manage, these include areas such as finance, recruitment, external marketing, developing and training, schools relationship coordinator, and many others.  Each of these brings new challenges and areas of focus and responsibility. At 3pm the centre opens for children, and all of our members are on first name terms with us which helps to create great bonds with them.  As a manager I also spend the afternoon mentoring tutors,

personal interest, such as music (I play the drums and bass guitar) and surfing. I take great joy in working with young people. Before starting my PGCE I worked with young people in an outdoor activity centre, as part of some work experience at school, and during my major degree project.

How did you find out about your particular course? The Exeter PGCE was recommended to me by a friend who’d completed the course. It’s got a fantastic reputation and the lecturers are amazing! Would you undertake further training to gain promotion? I would certainly consider further training in order to become qualified as an Advanced Skills Teacher (AST). Before starting my PGCE, I studied for an NVQ Level 2 in Food Preparation and Cooking in order to support my secondary specialism in Food Technology.

What do you actually do? I started with Explore Learning as a part-time tutor back in 2005; I loved the role and thoroughly enjoyed the training and company ethos.  When I completed my degree I started to look around at opportunities that were available but couldn’t really find anything else like Explore Learning out there.  I had a chat with my Centre Director and she encouraged me to apply for the Assistant Director position.  I was drawn to the role because of the fantastic variety it offered, and because I had seen first hand how the passion and enthusiasm of all of the staff made such an impact on children’s lives. Were you always interested in teaching as a career? I had always enjoyed working with children and never dreamed that I would find a career that let me carry on my passion while developing me and exposing me to so many elements of running a business.  When I came across the opportunities with Explore Learning I was thrilled that I could have the career and progression I wanted while really making a difference to children.

my aim is to help students understand products and why they are designed a certain way.

Scott Davies Age: 25 years old. Degree and university: Product Design at Plymouth University and then took a one-year PGCE programme at the University of Exeter. Work Title: Secondary Design and Technology teacher What do you actually do? My job involves working with students aged 11 – 18. I teach students how to use certain tools and model-making equipment, along with 3D drawing skills, rendering and graphical skills. My aim is to help students understand materials and products and why they are designed a certain way. This includes educating them about sustainability. I also teach Food Technology which involves teaching students a variety of skills from basic baking to designing complicated dishes, as well as selecting and using different equipment found in the kitchen. Why did you decide to be a teacher? I have wanted to teach from an early age. I find teaching extremely rewarding; I have taught people of different ages in areas of my own

What do you most like about what you do and are there any downsides? Working with young people is the most enjoyable part of teaching. I believe that teaching is one of the most interesting and enjoyable sectors to work in. It’s so rewarding to be able to contribute to students’ learning and feel that you’re making a difference. There’s a lot of work to do outside of normal teaching hours, such as lesson plans and marking, which can take up a lot of time. Teaching is a profession in which you take work home with you; part of school holidays are also taken up by work. Despite this, the enjoyment of teaching and rewards far outweigh the workload. What skills do you think you need to succeed? In order to become a successful teacher it is important to have a good sense of humour. It’s also useful to have a relaxed and patient temperament. As there’s a large workload involved in teaching you need a good work ethic. More importantly, you need to be passionate about teaching and working with young people. What advice would you give graduates wishing to come into this sector? I would advise any graduate wishing to come into teaching that gaining experience is vitally important for many reasons. You need to be absolutely sure that you want to teach and visiting schools is the only way to do this.

»

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2008? Qualifying in 2009?

Deciding to do my

PGCE

at Exeter was probably one of the best decisions I could have made.

‘‘

‘‘

CAMILLA BONHAM, PGCE TRAINEE

teach in Hillingdon where

every teacher matters Would you like: ✔ the possibility of being paid in July? ✔ a highly acclaimed fully supported first year induction programme? ✔ opportunity to begin MA accreditation? ✔ £1500 interest free loan?

Tel: +44 (0)1392 263009 Email: pgce-admissions@exeter.ac.uk www.exeter.ac.uk/education/pgce

Our recruitment open events take place on the 8 2008 at Compass Theatre 6 and 29 27 February 2009 and Arts Centre, Ickenham. Why not come and find out more?

out,call call01895 01895250592 250431 Don’t miss out, for250592 an application pack or for an application pack Email dnapier@hillingdon.gov.uk or lbarseghian@hillingdon.gov.uk

www.everyteachermatters.com for application forms, further information and the latest vacancies.

• Do you want to manage a business? • Can you inspire others? • Could you make a difference to children? Explore Learning is an ambitious and fast-growing company dedicated to making a difference in children’s education. Our national network of maths and English centres provide tuition to 5-14 year olds. We are looking for graduates with a unique range of skills to join Explore Learning as Assistant Directors. As part of the full time management team you would learn to run a tuition centre; developing your leadership, marketing and business management skills, at the same time as teaching children of all abilities. “My favourite part of the job is watching children grow in confidence and develop a real love of learning.” Sian, Bristol “The role has allowed me to gain an understanding of business and marketing within a company whose product I truly believe in, and whose structure means that my input is valued at the very highest level.” Fran, Reading EMAIL: careers@explorelearning.co.uk or VISIT: www.explorelearning.org.uk

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of the children is an essential skill. Patience and care when assessing situations as they arise in order to support and treat people fairly. Enthusiasm and a wealth of teaching strategies to cater for children with diverse learning needs are also essential. Do you have any advice for graduates wanting to come into this sector? As soon as you enter the profession or even go on a placement, quickly familiarise yourself with the whole school direction in key areas. Then you can give purpose and direction to your daily practice and always see your teaching as a part of a whole school team. You need to make sure people around you are aware of your strengths, and areas you would like to develop.

Age: 27  Degree and University: University of Cumbria (was St. Martins College) Lancaster campus Year of graduation: 2003 Occupation: Deputy Head teacher, Belle Vue Primary School, Carlisle What do you actually do? Teach a Year 6 for half a week and work towards school developments and daily running of school for the other half. Were you always interested in teaching as a career? No, but my mother was a head teacher, which allowed me opportunities for experience from a relatively young age. How did you find out about this particular job? I had done a placement at this school during the third year of my degree. They then rang me and asked me to apply for the post when it became available. What do you most like about what you do? Making a positive contribution towards the academic achievement and also social lives of a wide range of children. My job is incredibly diverse and I wear many different hats during one single day. It is challenging and hard work, yet very rewarding. I love working with parents to provide a holistic system of care and support for their children embedded through clear and consistent communication. Are there any downsides to what you do? It is a very time-hungry job. Balancing the role of class teacher and school manager is not always straight forward. What are the most important skills you need to make a success out of teaching? The ability to learn, grow and develop as a professional within your career. The profession changes and develops constantly, and in order not just to keep up, but to embrace this for the good

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What do you most like about what you do and are there any downsides? The students – you build up great relationships with them, it is massively rewarding when you see their progress, and they definitely keep you on your toes. Sometimes lesson planning can be very time consuming and takes a lot of creativity, but it’s certainly worth it.  You get out what you put in. Why do you feel that learning different languages is important today? I personally don’t think this is such a prominent issue in Britain, but a lot of people in other countries feel it is essential for them to succeed in jobs. It is paramount that people are given the opportunity to successfully learn English which is why TEFL is very valuable.

Aimee Nicole Bursnell Joseph Askew

course. After thorough researching, I applied to a Certificate in English Language Teaching to Adults CELTA four-week course in Prague. This stood out to be the most prestigious qualification, and the school (International House) seemed reliable, professional and friendly.

Age: 20 Degree and University: BSc Psychology, University of Reading Year of graduation: 2009 Occupation: Full-time student What do you actually do? I’m in the final year of my degree, so at the moment I’m continuing to study hard.  Were you always interested in teaching as a career? I remember when I first heard of TEFL, during a presentation at school. At the time, I thought that would be such an amazing job – the speakers were overflowing with enthusiasm - but going to a different country on my own was surely too daring and scary for me. Teaching always appealed to me, yet it seemed out of reach. It was only in my second year at university that I began to think seriously about it – this dream job could actually be a reality. When did your interest in languages start? Unlike a lot of people who go into TEFL, I wouldn’t say I have ever been very good at learning languages myself. However, I’ve always been fascinated by other cultures. I don’t think you necessarily have to have the raw interest in different languages to TEFL, as long as you are aware of the value language can give someone. How did you find out about this particular job? The Cactus website was recommended by a friend who had great experiences from completing a Trinity TEFL

my job is incredibly diverse and i wear many different hats during a single day.

What are the most important skills you need to make a success out of teaching? Confidence, enthusiasm, the ability to build rapport with a variety of people, and a true passion – whether it’s for languages or helping others learn. Do you have any advice for graduates wanting to come into this sector? Always put the time into planning a creative lesson and buy a decent grammar book. But most of all - don’t be afraid! Push yourself out of your comfort zones because you will gain so much more from it. n

20/1/09 11:18:52


Make a difference

Teach.

Are you thinking of becoming a teacher of the future? At Bath Spa University we offer teacher training PGCE courses in a wide choice of subjects for both Secondary (11–16) and Key Stage 2/3 (7–14) age groups. You will receive excellent support from dynamic and highly committed course tutors, a tax free training bursary of up to £9,000 plus a golden hello bonus in some subjects at the end of your first year of teaching. If you feel you can turn your talent to teaching please join us for a coffee to find out more. We have PGCE events on 10 February, 14 March, 25 April and 18 June 2009 – see website for full details. We particularly welcome applications from groups under-represented in teaching, notably black and minority ethnic candidates. Tel: 01225 875624 Email: teaching@bathspa.ac.uk

www.bathspa.ac.uk/courses/teaching

“Ateacheraffects eternity:hecan nevertellwherehis influencestops.” Henry Brook Adams

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Opportunities for NQTs in Essex, Southend-on-Sea and Thurrock No matter how hands-on your course was, it’s hard to know exactly what life will be like running your own classroom. We believe in balance. While you can’t step straight into the shoes of those who have been in the teaching profession for a while, at least you know they’ve been there before. As you develop your teaching skills, you’ll benefit from the wisdom of your colleagues, just as they will benefit from your freshness and enthusiasm. With our incredibly diverse landscape, full of things to do, there’s nothing to stop you making the most of life outside of school. This time next year, your life will look very different. We think you’ll enjoy the view here. For more information on how to apply, visit www.essexnqt.co.uk

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You’d think we would be happy with the fact that 98% of our students were successfully employed after completing a PGCE course. And we are. It’s just that we can’t stop thinking about the other 2%. This might sound like a minor point, but when the Guardian has just ranked your School of Education best in London and second best in the UK, it’s the type of detail you can afford to dwell upon.

Be part of a diverse community where all individuals are valued.

Join us, and meet with a future that is every bit as successful. Enrol for a PGCE course and you’ll have the opportunity to gain practical teaching experience while working towards achieving DfEE Qualified Teaching Status. You’ll also receive a training salary of between £6,000 and £9,000. And, if you teach a science or modern foreign language, you’ll receive a further golden hello payment.

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At Portsmouth we welcome applicants from all ethnic backgrounds and are committed to equality of opportunity. A training bursary of £9,000 awaits for students of Maths, Science and MFL. Students of Business Studies, Geography and English will receive a bursary of £6,000. Grants are available to assist with course fees.

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January 2009