The UCC Student’s Union, in conjunction with the Careers Service, have launched UCC Works, a new internship scheme designed to reward participation in extracurricular activities and give students the opportunity to gain valuable work experience as part of their degree.
Last Tuesday, the 2nd of October, saw UCC President Michael Murphy launch the scheme. The purpose of the initiative is to give students valuable work experience in a UCC campus organisation or department and allow them to receive formal recognition for same, as well as aid in their professional and personal development.
On completion of the internship and the submission of supporting documentation that reflects the student’s learning, students will receive a UCC Works Internship Award which provides formal recognition for their involvement in and learning acquired from the UCC Works Internship Experience and will also feature on the students diploma supplement.
This initiative is a joint venture across the University lead by the Careers Service and Students’ Union. SU President, Eoghan Healy, said “This is just one of our new ventures which will seek to improve the employability of UCC students and give them a cutting edge when facing the job hunt.”
To participate in UCC Works, students are required to do 3 things; participate in an approved UCC Works campus internship for a minimum of 40 hours, attend 2 careers workshops or employer fairs and finally reflect on their learning from UCC Works and update their CV appropriately.
At the moment there are 165 internships available in various departments such as UCC 98.3fm, The UCC Express, Motley Magazine, The Glucksman Gallery, Chaplaincy and Students’ Union, however this figure is expected to rise drastically once the programme gathers momentum as demand will be high. If students cannot find an internship that interests them they can contact the Careers Service or SU and they may be able to find a new internship immediately.
At the official launch UCC President, Michael Murphy explained that “Not all students have the opportunity to intern as a part of their academic course. We wanted to provide students at UCC with innovative ways and opportunities to support their academic qualifications and develop their employability in the future. UCC Works equips students with competencies required for the workplace such as teamwork, problem solving, planning and interpersonal skills, as well as practical skills such as CV writing, job application and interview techniques.”
“By adding this internship opportunity and related credits, we believe the UCC Works initiative will enhance students’ skills, abilities and confidence in work environments,” he added.
Student Union President, Mr. Healy, “would strongly encourage students to take part in this programme as it will really benefit them when they are facing job interviews. Employers are focusing more and more on learning obtained outside the classroom and this is a perfect example to demonstrate this. When you compete with your classmates for jobs, they will have the same degree as you; you need to show something more to the potential employer.” He added that “The Confederation of British Industry conducted a survey and found that 80% of employers rate graduate employability skills as the most important thing they look for during the interview process.”
More information on UCC Works and details on how to apply for an internship can be found at www.ucc.ie/careers