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Sunderland Futures: more than just a Careers Service

Home / Student blogs / Hannah Sly / Sunderland Futures

Published: January 27, 2020

For my latest blog, I wanted to give you an insight into my experience with Sunderland Futures and to shed some light on the team and what they offer to students.

I will also highlight some of the services, events and opportunities on offer which are there to help prepare you for life after university. 

To begin with, Sunderland Futures offer a range of career-related services and opportunities. For example: 

  • CV and Applications: You can get feedback on how to improve a draft CV, covering letter, application form or personal statement.
  • 1-2-1 Guidance Appointment: Guidance appointments allow you to explore career options and/or postgraduate courses. You’ll have the opportunity to identify what you need to do to reach your goals.
  • Sunderland Professional Award: The Sunderland Professional Award (SuPA) rewards you for your participation in activities such as work experience, volunteering and employer events. You can apply for the award at any stage of your degree - Bronze, Silver or Gold.
  • Interview coaching: Love them or loathe them, they’re a fundamental part of the job application process. Sunderland Futures can help you prepare for any interview by discussing potential interview questions and/or organising a mock interview.
  • Professional Mentoring Scheme: The Professional Mentoring Scheme gives you the chance to link up with a relevant mentor currently working in a career sector/job role you’re interested in pursuing after graduation. You’ll have regular meetings with your mentor to learn from their experience and knowledge, as well as gain an insight into how they got there.


My experience:

Over the last two years at university, I’ve used Sunderland Futures on various occasions - from events to appointments. My first encounter was a CV and Applications appointment. I was in the process of applying for a work placement and the organisation wanted me to send a copy of my CV.

However, I noticed that my layout could be improved as it was around four pages long (which we all know is too much!), contained a lot of irrelevant information and was quite unorganised.

The advisor went through my entire CV, section by section, to help rewrite certain aspects to enhance the most important information. For example, I didn’t write enough about my past part-time job and work placements, meaning the skills I had developed from those experiences and roles weren’t fully reflected on my CV.

As my CV was for a media-related opportunity, the advisor helped me tailor it towards that specific role. For example, some of my biggest past work experience in the media were located at the bottom of my CV. The advisor advised me to move the more important and relevant information to the top, rather than leaving it in order of date. Little improvements like that made a huge difference.

I was able to sit with the advisor and work through the CV until it was perfect and ready to send.

The appointment wasn’t too short or too long - just the right amount of time. As there’s a range of different appointment slots, you can attend whenever it’s most convenient for you. The advisor was approachable and answered all of my CV related questions. They didn’t just look at it briefly and send me away to make improvements at home in my own time - they sat and gave me advice on how to improve there and then.

If you want any advice regarding your CV, application form or cover letter, you can book an appointment by clicking here!


Finding opportunities:

You can stay updated and get in touch with Sunderland Futures via social media. They post regular updates regarding events and job opportunities on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. I have come across several opportunities via the Twitter page. For example, earlier this year, thanks to the Sunderland Futures Twitter page, I came across an opportunity to join New Writing North on a trip to Faber and Faber publishing house in London for the day in March 2019. I would never have seen this application form without the Sunderland Futures Twitter page, as I was extremely busy with university work and didn’t have the spare time to search around. I ended up gaining a place on the informative trip to the capital and a renowned publishing house! As a result, I was able to obtain an insight into the publishing industry and learn more about the different departments and roles available - my favourite being marketing and publicity.

If social media isn't your thing, you can also search for the latest graduate jobs, internships, volunteering and placement opportunities on Sunderland Futures online here.

Sunderland Futures is based at both St Peter’s (Prospect Building) and City Campus (Ground Floor, The Gateway). Appointments can be made at both campuses and you can pop in and talk to the team anytime.

From my own experience, I would recommend making the most of Sunderland Futures while you’re here. It exists to help you enhance your cv and learn more about your professional strengths and interests. They provide great volunteering, student jobs and career-related opportunities and are available throughout your entire student journey.


Topic: Advice and tips

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