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Careers and Employability

Developing your employability during your time at University is key to getting your future career off to a flying start. At the University of Bradford you can talk to a dedicated team of career and employability specialists about finding a part-time job, work placement or volunteering opportunities. Our friendly team have expert knowledge, no matter what your level of study, our team are here to give you support to progress your career. While making the most of your university journey involves building your experience, CV and skills, you are not alone through doing this and we are ready to help you achieve success, so ask us for help or find out more online about the Careers and Employability Services

What are Employability Skills?

Employability skills are core ‘transferable or soft skills’ and personal qualities (attitudes and behaviours) almost everyone needs to do almost any job. Employability skills are not the same as qualifications, academic subject knowledge, or specialist experience. Whilst every job vacancy will require certain qualifications, subject knowledge and experience, these aren’t ultimately what will get you the job. It’s your employability skills, and how you demonstrate these to an employer, which will help the employer decide that you are the best person for the job.

During your studies at the University of Bradford, you will have the opportunity to develop many key employability skills demanded by almost all employers, such as:

Effective communication




Time management




How can I develop my employability skills?

Earning money while you study can supplement your income and develop transferable skills for future graduate jobs. It can also increase your confidence, resilience and commercial awareness. As an international student, a part-time job may help you to learn more about UK culture.

Work placements and internships can develop your professional and technical skills and provide an opportunity for you to see how much you enjoy a role in industry. Sandwich placements, placement years or industrial placements, can be undertaken during your studies. These are paid opportunities, can last 9-12 months, and take place between the second and final year of your degree.

Internships usually take place over summer and last 1-4 months. Employers usually specify students in their second year of study as they require some technical knowledge. These should always pay at least national minimum wage. As a first year student, think about taking a summer experience internship to enhance your CV.

Student working in the Law Clinic

Our specialists’ top tips

Have extra money in your pocket with part time work and meet new people. However, you should make sure that you can balance your job and your studies – we strongly recommend that you work no more than 15 hours per week during term time. Retail and hospitality jobs generally give you the flexibility to work weekends and evenings around your studies, but there are a wide range of roles which offer part-time hours.

Find out more about part-time work

Whether this is for part time work, placements, volunteering and graduate opportunities your CV is often the first impression you will make! A CV is a one or two page document which shows your skills, achievements, qualifications and experience. Your CV gives an overview of who you are and what you have to offer an employer. We can help you to make your CV stand out from the crowd and get you that interview.

Find out more about creating your CV

Supercharge your skills and experience with work placements and internships so that you can be at the front of the queue for graduate jobs. Know how and when to apply for a placement year and internships.

Find out more about internships and placements

You can make a real difference to other people’s lives by contributing to the local community through volunteering. There is an exciting range of opportunities available from caring to environmental work and campaigning on human rights. Talk to us about developing your employability by volunteering whilst you are studying and during vacations. Although generally unpaid, voluntary work may include a small payment for expenses.

Find out more about volunteering

Through study and work abroad you will meet new people, develop inter-cultural awareness which is highly valued by graduate recruiters. There are lots of opportunities to go abroad and funding is available to help you with this. You can study, work or do a short international programme in more than 150 countries across the world. This will help you to broaden your horizons, get a global perspective, and make new friends for life across the world!

Find out more about opportunities abroad

We know how much you care about your future career and that you want to make the most of your time at Bradford, getting a part-time job or placement during your time in the UK can be an important part of your higher education experience. Find out about securing a part time job, a placement or an internship whilst you are studying in the UK by contacting the Careers Service.

Find out more about careers for international students

Profile image of student, Connor Harrison

Connor Harrison

BSc (Hons) Marketing

"I couldn't have got my placement without the careers service, they were exceptionally supportive to me and gave me the extra step to pursue a placement. They helped me refine my CV, so it was to a decent standard, a standard where it was actually above others… and gave me lots of interview tips and a lot of local options. They provided a lot, the vigour to keep going, the encouragement and the support."

Connor Harrison full profile

Ifrah Asif

LLB (Hons) Law

"I took my CV to Careers Service and the man sat with me for a good 20 minutes and went through it all. He told me how I need to tweak certain things so that my cover letter and my CV were in sync. It’s a really basic skill that they’ve equipped me with that’s going to stay with me the rest of my life now."

Ifrah Asif full profile

Profile image of student, Ifrah Asif


Where can I get support in planning my future?

While you are at University take control of your future and learn how to research career ideas and make informed decisions about your goals. Discover how to make the transition from student to professional with confidence. While making the most of your time at university involves developing your experience, skills and confidence, you are not doing this alone, we’re here to support you. Get support from our professional Career Consultants with a one to one appointment You can get started with a 15-minute 'quick query' or book a 45-minute appointment for a more in-depth discussion. Our appointments are impartial, confidential and conducted in privacy, and are also available by telephone or online. They are open to University of Bradford students and recent graduates. As well as supporting you to explore ideas about your future goals, we can help you understand graduate recruitment processes, for example writing a professional CV, assessment centres and handling job interviews. 

Make an appointment with the Careers Service


Your next steps

Spend some time reflecting on your own situation and the areas you might like to focus on when you start at University. Use these questions to help you:

  • How many part time hours can you work during term time?
  • How long is an industrial placement?
  • Do you get paid for volunteering?
  • How many countries offer opportunities abroad?
  • Who can help you explore your career ideas?

Now, consider what you want to ask us about when we meet you at Bradford. For news, events, student stories and exclusive opportunities, follow us on: