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Enhancing Careers Support at LBU

Find out how Rebecca has been working with the Careers team to put Student Voice at the heart of employability support.

Academic Representation
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This semester has been filled with engaging and insightful work, which has allowed me to thoroughly explore how you, as students at Leeds Beckett University, perceive the support you receive in terms of graduate and placement resources. By examining the current offerings and identifying what works well, I have compiled a set of data that can be shared with various schools within the university to aid in further improvements.

Throughout the semester, I have conducted numerous house meetings that have provided a platform for direct communication with students. These meetings have been crucial in understanding how the university can enhance its support to improve the academic experience. A recurring theme from these discussions was the desire for more comprehensive career support, including assistance with CVs, cover letters, LinkedIn profiles, and, importantly, networking opportunities. Although the university already offers a comprehensive support package, these conversations enabled me to convey student feedback to the relevant support providers, ensuring that the student voice is reflected in available resources. My close collaboration with the Graduate & Placements team has deepened my understanding of current processes and their rationale.

Additionally, my work led me to investigate the role of academic advisors and their effectiveness across the university. Feedback from various students indicated that while some schools excel in this area, others could significantly benefit from improvements to the academic advisor role. An improved version of the academic advisory role is being piloted within the law school, of which I have had the opportunity to participate and share my knowledge of student’s thoughts. The new structure being piloted involves academic advisors being able to give more careers and placements guidance throughout students first, second and third year, hopefully helping students to feel more support with their career paths or future plans.

Over the year, I have also been actively involved in the Sense of Belonging (SOB) Project led by Esther Pugh in the Leeds Business School (LBS). This project has broadened my perspective on how Leeds Beckett University can foster a sense of belonging among students. I participated in several workshops with Esther Pugh, aimed at educating academics and university staff on creating moments that enhance students' sense of belonging. The positive feedback received from these workshops suggests that they will have a lasting impact, as staff integrate these practices into their teaching and interactions.

All these efforts have culminated in the development of a comprehensive package aimed at improving resources, particularly focusing on the vocational elements of each undergraduate degree within the LBS. This package incorporates insights from the SOB project and other areas of my work, providing a cohesive strategy for enhancing student support across the university.

This year has been a great one and I’m sure that these efforts will go forward to continue to improve students’ academic experiences at Leeds Beckett.