Are you a busy organisation with a critical project that's on the back burner? Do you sometimes wish you had an extra pair of hands in the team?
Hiring a graduate for a fully funded project-based work placement could be your ideal solution.
Gradvantage is an employability programme which works with recent graduates from BAME and underrepresented backgrounds to help them gain work experience.
Gradvantage offers careers guidance and employability support to a targeted group of undergraduate graduates from academic year 2020/2021.
As part of the programme the graduates will be offered the opportunity to apply for exclusive 4- week project-based graduate placements offered by SME businesses at the end of their studies. Therefore, placements can commence from late July 2021. The placements will be fully funded by the Santander Employability funding and City, University of London’s Innovation Fund.
How can you sign up?
You can apply using the below application form button.
For more information about the programme and to request to participate, please contact Lydia Hughes on +44 (0)20 7040 4684 or email email@example.com.
This year we have funding for 22 fully funded 4-week external project-based placements and 12 fully funded 4-week university-based placements. The graduates who gain a place on the GradVantage Programme and can therefore apply for the placements will be from 4 of City University’s schools:
- The City Law School
- School of Arts & Social Sciences
- School of Mathematics, Computer Science & Engineering
- The Business School
The Recruitment Process
- Host businesses need to use the application form to send through details of the type of placement they would like to offer.
- Applications will be reviewed by the university and the host business will be notified as to whether their application has been successful.
- The funding is limited so please be aware we cannot always accept all requests made for the scheme.
- The host business must sign a Funding Agreement in order to be accepted onto the programme.
- Registration on the Santander Platform by company & candidate – completed directly or on your behalf by the Careers team.
- Participating businesses will recruit an intern from the pool of GradVantage 20/21 Graduates.
- City University will arrange interviews and assist the host business with all aspects of the recruitment process.
- The graduate will be employed and paid by City University’s in-house temporary recruitment function, Unitemps. The pay rate for each placement will be £12.16 per hour and the graduates will be required to work a maximum of 35 hours per week.
- The host business will be responsible for managing and supporting the graduate during the placement including monitoring and approving weekly timesheets through the Unitemps website.
Graduate Work Placement Guide
The aim of the scheme is to match SME businesses looking to hire graduates from the Gradvantage programme for project-based 4-week placements starting from July 2021. If a host business wishes to participate in the programme they need to:
- Submit an application form which includes details of the project(s) which will be suitable for a graduate work placement
- The host business is requested to make the work project as specific as possible with specific duties, aims and an end goal to be achieved at the end of the 4-week period
- Due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, it is highly recommended that host businesses identify projects that can be completed remotely
- The host business is requested to consider the courses / disciplines of the eligible graduates when applying for the programme and submitting details of their project(s) (see eligible student section)
- Once a project has been approved, it will be advertised via Unitemps from the start of July 2021 to the participants of the Gradvantage Programme
- Programme participants who are interested in a placement can apply by uploading their CV and Cover Letter to the Unitemps portal
- A Gradvantage Coordinator will review the applications for each placement, create a shortlist, arrange interviews and manage any rejections on behalf of the host business
- Placements can start from July 2021; the latest an internship can start is August 2021.
Work Project Guidelines
Each project submission should include the following:
- Business Need
- Improving a Business Process e.g. finance, HR, logistics
- Research Project e.g. consumer, policy, data, academic
- Launching and/or improving communication channels
- Creating a strategy e.g. marketing
- Simple technical projects.
We are specifically interested in hear from companies who specialise in the following sectors:
- Law and Policy
- Data & Analytics
- Marketing and communications
- Social Sciences
- Social inclusion / justice / welfare
- Psychology-related fields.
Internal City Graduate Placements
In 2021 we also have funding for 10 internal work placements through the Access and Participation Plan fund. The graduate would be employed and paid through Unitemps (City’s internal temporary recruitment service).
If you are a staff member in an internal school, team or department at City and would like to offer a 4-week work project to a graduate from Gradvantage in summer 2021 (July-August) then please fill out the Internal Gradvantage Submission form.
Please note this placement will be fully funded for 4 weeks however you will be responsible for the management and supervision of the graduate, including approval of their weekly timesheets.
All other information regarding the programme and what work projects will be eligible can be found on the wider Gradvantage page (all information on this page also applies to internal placements).
Santander Universities SME Internship with Cyber-Duck
I graduated here at City University of London in July 2020 with a First-Class Honours in Politics. I am currently undertaking a five-month digital optimisation internship at award-winning digital agency Cyber-Duck.
Why did you apply for a SME Internship through City University?
I was determined to take a head-start in pursuing an internship that catered to various fields and given the unforeseen event of COVID-19, searching early was a crucial step to my personal and career growth.
The opportunity to undertake work experience in a field outside of my typical degree pathway would open up new doors for future prospects, thus making an SME internship a great way to start off my career.
Tell us about your internship? What were you doing and where were you working?
I applied for a digital optimisation internship role which involves improving the Cyber-Duck website based on findings from the Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) audit; updates include image optimisation, re-directs, internal linking and refreshing meta-tags on the website Content Management System (CMS).
I have worked on client services including producing keyword ranking reports and updating marketing dashboards. Currently I am involved in conducting firmographic and brand awareness research, with a focus on directories, awards and press records to amplify Cyber-Duck’s position in the digital agency sphere.
I am also heavily involved in conducting the website content audit and strategy alongside the CEO and founder, with the focus on brand ambition, depth and trends.
How has this role helped you? What skills has your role through the scheme given you?
This internship has enabled me to enhance and adopt new skills, from familiarising myself with back-end technologies such as Customer Relationship Management (CRM) and Content Management Systems (CMS) to applying new Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) knowledge on client projects – such as producing meta-tags for UK Sport and Sport England: The Whyte Review.
It has allowed me to gain a variety of transferable skills that I am certain will benefit me in the future; developing remote-teamwork skills, organisational skills and a new confidence in working with large datasets to produce client reports.
Additionally, working alongside various ‘Ducks’ including the CEO and founder, web-developers and working closely with the Digital Optimisation Lead meant that I have fully immersed myself into the digital marketing sphere and gained insightful knowledge that would otherwise not have been presented had I stayed to my typical degree pathway.
If you could give a student thinking of doing an internship one piece of advice, what would it be?
I would encourage new graduates to apply to internship roles regardless of whether it is in a field they have explored previously – internships are the perfect opportunity to gain new skills outside of the academic realm and gain transferable skills.
To add to this, I would advise to start research early, especially given unforeseen events such as COVID-19 that have heavily impacted job opportunities.
What are you doing now?
My contract with Cyber-Duck has been extended which was fantastic news! I am excited to continue to work through brand awareness and Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) tasks and develop Google Analytics skills. I look forward to seeing what the future holds in terms of new avenues and doors.