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Placements and industry links

Our 'Employability Manifesto': in collaboration with the Careers Service and the Classical Society

The Classics department has a commitment

  • to offer top quality careers advice, tailored to those taking degrees in our department, both undergraduate and postgraduate
  • to integrate transferable and employability skills training into all our teaching
  • to offer a dedicated research and employability skills course embedded in the first year curriculum
  • to offer a departmental competitive work placement scheme for second year undergraduates
  • to raise students’ awareness of the employability skills that they acquire during our degree, and their ability to articulate them in a career context
  • to offer departmental-specific training workshops
  • to foster contacts with graduates from our department (alumni) to provide networking opportunities and advice to current students
  • to encourage students to share experience of applications for jobs, internships etc
  • to promote actively Royal Holloway's Passport Scheme for rewarding co-curricular activities which develop employability skills.

Current students: work placement scheme 2015-16

From 2013, as part of our wide 'Employability Manifesto', the department is introducing a competitive and selective work placement scheme for our second-year students, offering several short placements to be held after second year exams within a broad range of employment fields. This is the first and currently only such scheme within a Classics department in a UK university.

How it works

  • the scheme is open to all second year students studying in the Classics department, including single, joint and combined honours degree programmes
  • the scheme is competitive and applicants will be assessed first on their CV and covering letter, then at interview
  • placements are generally two weeks in length, though if the student and host organisation form a good relationship, this can often be extended by agreement. The placements take place sometime during the summer, after your summer term exams.

How to take part

During autumn term 2015

Please attend the workshop 'Introduction to Placements', to be held on Monday 12th October, 10-11am, in McCrea room 218.

Once you join the scheme, you’ll need to attend a compulsory CV and applications workshop and a compulsory interviews workshop in order to be eligible for the scheme.

During the autumn term, you’ll be asked to submit via Moodle a CV and covering letter, targeted towards one of a number of sample job descriptions we’ll provide. These will cover a range of career areas from the ones you have suggested.

All students submitting CVs and letters will receive personalised feedback on these.

A shortlist is then drawn up, and shortlisted applicants will be invited for a short interview to take place on Friday 5th February (venue tba).

The six best performing applicants will have the opportunity to undertake a short placement (2-4 weeks) in their area of interest during the summer vacation. The careers service will look to source placements that meet the needs and interested of successful applicants as closely as possible.

If you have any questions about the placement scheme, contact Dr Richard Hawley.


Interested in a career placement?

Leah and Yolanda explain how they benefited from the experience.

Placement profile

Alice Halifax-Lyons, second year student

Alice"At the beginning of the summer break I undertook a one-month work placement in the BBC’s Factual Arts department. I 'd been interested in doing a placement related to research roles in factual TV and, by looking online at different broadcasters, I saw that the BBC offered a variety,, including one in London.

I made my application online, answering a number of questions about my skills, experience and reasons for wanting to do the placement. One thing that I think helped me win the placement was mentioning a specific programme made by the BBC, Alastair Sooke’s Treasures of Ancient Rome. This meant I was put to work on a similar programme, Treasures of Ancient Egypt. Having never applied for a placement before, and having little media experience, I made use of the Careers Service's drop-in sessions to help with my application. They were very useful, helping me decide what to include in my application and answer my questions. After applying I was approached by the BBC and asked if I would be available to start a placement in two weeks' time, and sent information on what to do on my first day.

My month at the BBC was really enjoyable and insightful. I was given responsibility, guidance, a chance to perform different roles and to meet many people working in the department. I was asked to carry out research, help on set with filming, transcribe programmes and interviews, to deliver files and also to search the archives for footage. The placement was hugely beneficial as I had no insight into the media industry, and it helped me understand the different roles I could pursue after my degree. The people I was able to work with were very helpful and encouraging, as they understood I was coming in with little experience, but saw my enthusiasm for the roles I was able to do. Lots of energy was required, but the work was really rewarding and interesting. I would recommend it to anyone interested in broadcasting."



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