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Internships and placements

Work experience in an organisation can be hugely valuable in developing your professional and technical skills and experience, as well as providing an opportunity for you to see how much you enjoy and are suited to a role or industry. This is generally broken down into two categories:

Placements, also referred to as sandwich placements, placement years or industrial placements are usually undertaken during your studies and are usually related to the subject you are studying, as they are designed to provide practical industry experience. These are paid opportunities which usually last 9-12 months and take place between the second and final year of an undergraduate degree.

Internships for undergraduates are generally shorter, usually taking place over summer and lasting 1-4 months. Employers offering these type of opportunities usually specify students in their second year of study as they require a reasonable amount of technical knowledge (however our Summer Experience internships are open to first and second year undergraduates). Like placements, these should always pay at least national minimum wage.

You might also see graduate internships advertised which offer work experience to recent grads but these are generally less defined than undergraduate opportunities and could last anywhere from a week to a year. These type of internships could be unpaid or only pay expenses, so think carefully when applying for these about whether you can afford to live and whether the experience will be worth it overall - we recommend that you should always look for paid opportunities wherever possible. See more on the law on unpaid internships on TARGETjobs.

There are also insight weeks which are usually aimed at first year students as an introduction to a specific role or industry, and may also be targeted to underrepresented groups. These typically take place in Spring.

Career and Employability Services runs programmes for both undergraduates and recent graduates to gain valuable work experience:

Getting started

As well as the sources of opportunities and information below, there are a few things you can do to inform your search.

Firstly, take a look at our jobs database; you can book an appointment with us to talk about your options, and check out our facebook page for our Tuesday Internships and Placements picks.

Tilly's story - watch the video

Hear Tilly (a University of Bradford student) talk about the support she received from Career and Employability Services throughout her Summer Experience internship:

Where to look

Below is a list of websites that feature opportunities for work experience in a range of sectors and work experience types, followed by sites with specific opportunities for each faculty.

General placement websites:

Life Sciences

Information for pre-enrolment Health and Life Sciences students

Management, Law and Social Sciences

School of Management and School of Law

Internships and placements for International Students

Internships

Internships are periods of paid work experience of up to three months and in order to comply with visa regulations, any internship carried out by an international student must fit the description outlined in the British Council / Education UK website. To comply with the regulations, all internships must be paid and this can be a problem for international students as some internships are unpaid. If you are offered a period of unpaid work experience, you could classify this as temporary or part-time work and not as an internship.

For further information on this you are advised to see a Visa Support adviser in MyBradford - Student Support or contact UKCISA

 

Sandwich Placements

Sandwich placements (also known as Industrial Placements or Year in industry) are periods of paid work experience, normally carried out in the third year of a four year undergraduate degree. For some courses, sandwich placements are compulsory and if this is the case, then you will be provided with support from your faculty. Find out if your faculty has a Placements Tutor or Coordinator as they will have important information on undertaking placements as part of your degree course and where to look for vacancies.

International students can participate in sandwich placements with the current Tier 4 Student visa. However, as a placement student, you are still registered and will receive support as a student at the university and hence will still have to pay fees (albeit much reduced fees) – please check with your faculty.

  • This is a very good opportunity for you to gain practical work experience in your relevant field and experience working in the UK. Over the years, many international students have been successful in getting industrial placements in major companies as well as in small medium size enterprise (SMEs). Applications for these placements can be very competitive, especially in large national or international companies, so you should start applying early as most have closing dates between December and February.

It is also possible to do an industrial placement in your own country. However, you will need to check the suitability of each placement with your faculty’s Placement Tutor / Coordinator.

International opportunities from GoinGlobal

GoinGlobal features:

  • worldwide job and internship postings – search for job openings in countries around the world. Listings are updated daily
  • expert advice - for finding job overseas, including information on work permits, visa regulations, cultural and relocation information
  • country career guides – packed with country-specific career information, this research tool provides expert advice and insider tips for finding employment opportunities at home and abroad
  • corporate profiles – access more than 400,000 country-specific company profiles in various industries such as manufacturing, transportation, consumer goods, consulting services, finance and technology

To find out more, visit:

  1. GoinGlobal (link if you are on-campus) 
  2. GoinGlobal (link if you are off campus)

If you are having any issues with accessing GoinGlobal please email careers@bradford.ac.uk

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