How the learning opportunities at UWE Bristol have enhanced my student experience.

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By Ilaria, BA(Hons) Criminology and Sociology

Our student, Ilaria, tells us how the opportunities at UWE Bristol have helped her to make the most of her time of university. She shares how her learning experiences outside of her course have supported her studies, from guest speakers to internships. Read more about Ilaria’s story.

Why I chose UWE Bristol

I wanted to study at university to both enrich myself with academic knowledge and new life experiences. I knew from the start of my course, I’d want to make the most of my time at university by gaining professional experience. UWE Bristol offers many career development opportunities, so I’m very happy I chose to study here.

Opportunities to learn outside of my degree

To complement my studies, I’ve learned a lot through guest speaker seminars, which enable me to learn from experts within my field of study. I was lucky enough to attend a talk by the author of a book I’m reading for one of my modules. The author shared insight on his sociological research, which was a great opportunity to ask him questions about his career.

I’ve also attended a talk where my lecturer interviewed an emergency duty team social worker, who shared real-world experiences of her social work career. Not only have these seminars expanded my course knowledge, but they’ve also offered an exciting snapshot of my future career prospects after I graduate.

Finally, the most recent event I attended enabled me to hear from a recent graduate about her career in the charity and voluntary sector. I’m interested in learning more about not-for-profit organisations and volunteering, so it’s great that UWE Bristol offer a broad range of talks to suit everyone’s interests.

Improving my employability through internships

To add to my CV alongside my degree, I’ve boosted my professional development through internship opportunities too. UWE Bristol advertise jobs, internships, and placements on their online careers portal, plus they encourage all students to get real-world experience throughout their studies.

The University supported me to analyse my skills, experiences and strengths, which helped me to successfully apply for an internship. I was offered an amazing opportunity to work for an organisation who specialise in training, supervision and research in the domestic violence sector.

My internship was adapted during the pandemic, so I was able to improve my digital skills through remote working. The whole internship process gave me valuable professional experience, from the selection interview to weekly meetings with the Director. Completing my internship has given me so much confidence, so I can’t recommend internships enough.

“My internship taught me how to organise myself and my day-to-day schedule, helping me to be more prepared for life after graduation.”

Final thoughts

I can proudly say that UWE Bristol offers so many extracurricular learning experiences and professional development opportunities to its students. I’ve learned so much from the guest lectures and internships available to me, which have also benefitted my degree. All these experiences have built my skills and confidence at university, ensuring I’m ready for my future career.

Find out more about career development opportunities at UWE Bristol.

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