Careers support for international undergraduates, postgraduate completers and graduates

Guest BloggerAdvice, Final Year, Graduates, International Students, Postgraduate, Work Experience

Two students on a bench. One has a laptop and the other, a notebook

Adam Janickyj and Jim Reali are Careers Consultants in Aston’s Careers+Placements team, with responsibilities for supporting both undergraduate and postgraduate students once they have completed their studies, through graduation and beyond. We’re here to help you!

Adam: My role is predominantly focused on supporting graduates from Aston University into their ideal job after they finish their studies. We provide intensive support for 12 – 18 months after graduation and then further support for 3 years after you finish.

Jim: As well as working with current postgraduates and providing support in many curriculum sessions, I support all postgraduates up to three years out from completion of their studies. We have a huge number of international students and graduates here at Aston and I’m passionate about giving them as much assistance as home students to achieve their goals and aspirations.

Let’s take a look at how we can help you and the resources we recommend you use as part of your job search.

CVs and CV360

CVs are a crucial requirement, not only when applying for graduate employment opportunities (whether you’ve no previous experience, or you are an ‘experienced hire’, returning to the workplace with a wealth of proven experience prior to undertaking further study). We have a wealth of resources to assist you:

Psychometric tests

An ever-expanding number of employers are using psychometric tests and assessments as part of their recruitment process, to filter the number of applications they receive. This often takes place during the early stages of recruitment and practice can help you to pass.

Visas

If you’d like to work in the UK, you are probably aware that there are many different types of visas and that the regulations seem to change rapidly and frequently. Whilst C+P staff can’t assist with specific visa information, we know some very helpful people who can. Our International Student Advice Team colleagues in the Student Hub would be happy for you to contact them with questions about visas for working in the UK. Their ‘service standard’ is that they will provide advice with all Aston graduates’ first work-related visa after their studies. You may also find it useful to look at this video that the team recorded for us recently.

If you’re interested in working in a country other than your home country or the UK, you may find it helpful to refer to the GoinGlobal pages for the appropriate country.

Aston Futures

As you may well know, Aston Futures is our one-stop shop for everything careers-related – whether that is booking an appointment with a member of the team (which we can conduct remotely, via Microsoft Teams), registering for one of our events (most are taking place online during the pandemic, so your location needn’t prevent you from taking part), or looking at opportunities (Jim also sends out weekly opportunity emails to all recent postgraduate graduates, with links to Aston Futures.) As a graduate, you will need to register your personal email address on Aston Futures. We’ve got a handy webpage that explains everything you need to do.

Online work experience opportunities

We all know that there is a pandemic at present and it’s having different levels of impact in different countries and different regions around the world (we hope you are safe and well). However, this doesn’t mean that you can’t undertake work experience or develop your skills. It just means that there are different approaches you may wish to consider, most of which will involve working remotely, online. The links below may help to give you some ideas to get started:

  • Prospects have created a page specifically around the impact of Covid-19 on graduates searching for work experience and jobs.
  • This LinkedIn article around remote working and how to use LinkedIn to find remote roles.
  • Reed and various online recruitment firms have dedicated work-from-home/remote working pages.
  • Employment 4 Students have a dedicated page for online freelance jobs for students.
  • There are several blog posts (largely aimed at stay-at-home parents) that list different forms of remote working that are flexible.
  • Upwork is an international website with many UK jobs listed. As the work is being done online, clients can take jobs from anywhere in the world.
  • People per hour has a wide range of jobs on offer, with a good selection in creative arts, and employers’ pay rates seem reasonable. Freelancers can also sell their services for either an hourly rate or a fixed price for the entire project. Offers a full range of services.
  • STEM Women are holding frequent virtual careers fairs.
  • The Forage (Previously known as Inside Sherpa) They advertise virtual internships for a range of businesses, including Goldman Sachs, Deloitte, Pinsent Masons and Citi bank.
  • Project Set – Virtual internships in which you can work on real-life projects.
  • The Odin Project – Online training for anyone interested in web development, offering opportunities to learn HTML, CSS, JavaScript and other skills. You do not have to be studying computer science or a technology-related degree to benefit from the training.

Online learning opportunities:

Launchpad

The pandemic has had a big impact on the way companies recruit talent into their organisation. One of the most noticeable, and for good reasons, is the move to online selection techniques. Due to this a lot of organisation are relying on video interview platforms to carry these out.

There are two types: captured and live. Captured video interviews have rerecorded interview questions for you to answer within certain time limit (usually two minutes). Live video interviews use software like Skype, MS Teams or Zoom to carry out an interview virtually.

With all interviews, practice is key! And, you guessed it, we have software to help you with these captured video interviews called LaunchPad.

LaunchPad provides a structured interview for you to take. You have three questions to answer with two minutes per question. Want to see how you look on camera, understand how you deal with the time constraints while seeing how good your response is? These are all things that you can develop through taking practice interviews.

You will receive a link to watch your video back, cringy we know, but helpful for development. Retake it as many times as you want or send it to one of the careers team and get some 1-to-1 feedback in a careers appointment.

Access LaunchPad through this link or if you are a graduate, you’ll need to send an email to careersgradteam@aston.ac.uk to get set up on the system.

There are several other video interview platforms you can use as well, including:

Finding work globally

As with most international students, you probably aren’t afraid to seek out new opportunities. Having already taken the initiative to study in a new country, I’m sure working in yet another one sounds quite appealing to you. If so, we have some great tools to help you find a role, which ever country you decide to focus on next.

GoinGlobal is an amazing resource for international opportunities. It has both an online internship and jobs database that we have subscribed to so that you can access the latest vacancies worldwide.

If you are not sure where to start then read through either their country or city guides, with tailored CV and interview advice, top companies, information on living there and lots more these are a great place to start.

If you are looking for a job in the US, they have a database of employers that can sponsor visa applications. There are also 450,000 corporate profiles to target key employers in 196 countries.

You can gain access to GoinGlobal, by signing in to our resource library using your Aston University log in details.