Category Archives: Destinations

Just graduated? Come and say hello!

Did you know that almost 20% of recent University of Bristol graduates who are working in the UK are based in Bristol 6 months after graduation?

As Bristol was named the best place to live in Britain in 2017, it’s not hard to understand why so many graduates are keen to start their career here. The variety of recent graduate profiles on our Careers Network give a flavour of the diverse range of careers that are available in Bristol. Opportunities flourish in the legal sector, engineering and teaching, and somewhat unsurprisingly, at the University!

Among the largest recruiters of Bristol graduates each year are PwC (recruiting 21 people in 2015/16), Deloitte (20), KPMG (15) and EY (9). These companies all have Bristol-based regional headquarters, and could be a great place to launch your career.

The competition for places on their graduate recruitment schemes is fierce, but we understand from these employers that your chance of success is improved by applying to a region rather than to London. 

If you graduate without securing the right role for you, then the Careers Service is here to help! You can access our services for three years after graduation, and many graduates continue to join us at our careers fairs (53 graduates in 2016/17), events (82), and for advice appointments (121).

Even if you are not able to come to see us in Bristol, we can help. You can ask us a question online, have a telephone advice appointment, or search and apply for a huge number and variety of vacancies – in 2016/17, 983 graduates viewed 4,640 different opportunities! You may be doing OK by yourself… but we’ve still got your back.

What are Bristol Graduates up to now?

Every year, we get in touch with recent graduates to find out what they’re up to now that they’ve left the University of Bristol. Each year the results reveal some interesting and surprising facts – the most recent survey for 2015/16 graduates was no exception.

In this survey, we heard from 62% of all graduates either online or through our telephone campaign. This included 78% of all full-time, UK undergraduates and 60% of those from the EU.

Here is a snapshot of what we discovered:

 

This includes full and part time work and study. Other activities include travelling,  due to start a job, looking for work or doing something else.

 

Bristol Graduates love Bristol!

17% of graduates are still living and working in the Bristol area and 34% of graduates who have pursued further study, such as a Masters or PhD, have chosen to do so at the University of Bristol. 

 

What jobs are they doing now?

 

University of Bristol Graduates go into all sorts of careers, some of which you may expect while others are a little more unusual.

 

 

Here are some job title highlights from the 15/16 survey:

  • Associate Catastrophe Analyst for Liberty Specialist Markets (Geography graduate)
  • Fraud Investigator for Amazon (French and Italian graduate)
  • Talent Specialist for Vodafone (Geography graduate)
  • Recruitment Strategy Analyst (Biology graduate)
  • Drug Policy Researcher for the Transform Drugs Policy Foundation (Philosophy and Spanish graduate)
  • Agile Mobile and Web Developer for Theodo UK (Mathematics and Computer Science graduate)
  • Specialist Environmental Instructor at a Residential Centre (Zoology graduate)

If you’re graduating in Summer 2017, you will be contacted between November 2017 and March 2018 about completing the survey. Completing it helps us to improve our careers support for current students and recent graduates.

Be inspired by our Award alumni – complete the PLUS Award by June 9!

The Bristol PLUS Award deadline for all undergraduates and postgraduate research students is rapidly approaching! We know this is a stressful time for students with final deadlines and exams, but if you are registered on the Award, do not let your progress go to waste! Find that last bit of energy and complete the Award by June 9! 

Achieving the Award will help you when applying for jobs or internships, and if you are not a finalist, it sets you up to aim for the Outstanding Award next year! As a bit of inspiration, you can read about one of our PLUS and Outstanding Award alumni here, who is now enjoying working life being employed by Microsoft. More student case studies can be found on our website.

Name: Derek Bekoe
Age: 23
Current Job title: Software Engineer (Microsoft)
Graduation year from Bristol: 2015
Subject studied: Computer Science

How did the PLUS Award help prepare you for your career after University? Are you glad you took part?
During my time at university, I completed both the PLUS Award and the Outstanding Award. I’m glad I took the steps to complete the Awards because it taught me the importance of what it means to be employable and how to gain employability-related skills.

How useful was the PLUS award in preparing you for the recruitment and selection process with your employer?
The PLUS Award got me more involved with the Careers Service. It really helped me prepare for the behavioural questions in interviews. I learned the STAR method (Situation, Task, Action, Response) through my mock interviews and it proved invaluable in my real interviews.

Is there anything in particular you gained from the PLUS Award that you feel you would not have gained if you had not taken part?
Completing the PLUS Award pushed me to complete more hours of work experience and volunteer work outside of my studies. During interviews, I would end up having conversations about the projects and volunteering I had done outside of my studies and that helps when you want to stand out!

Any words of advice or encouragement to current students thinking of taking the Bristol PLUS award?
I’d highly recommend signing up for the PLUS award and putting your all into each part of the award. After the PLUS award, also consider the Outstanding award as both awards really help prepare you for interviews and landing that dream graduate role.

What are Bristol students doing 6 months after graduation?

What are Bristol students doing 6 months after graduation?

Graduands in the procession out of the Great Hall at the end of a summer 2012 graduation ceremony

Every year, the Careers Service contacts all graduates to ask them what they have gone on to do 6 months after graduating – whether they are in employment, further study, going travelling or doing something else entirely. This is part of a national survey, known as the DLHE (Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education) survey. At a national level, the results are used to inform the university league tables (such as The Times Good University Guide) and Unistats.

Locally, we use the anonymised results to help our students to research potential careers. We use the data to determine the types of events that we host during the year to inspire our students to think about their options after graduating. And if you’re keen to see what your career options are with your degree, take a look at the Careers Service website. The information you’ll find here has been obtained from the DLHE survey, which is why it’s so important that our graduates give us as much information as possible about what they have gone on to do.

So when you receive an email from us 6 months after you’ve graduated that invites you to complete the DLHE survey, please remember that whatever your circumstances we’re very keen to hear from you! We need to hear from at least 80% of those we contact and your response will help us gain a better understanding of the graduate labour market, improve the careers advice we offer and enable you to make a more informed choice about life after graduation.

Thinking about life after graduation? Our graduates can help!

Have you ever wondered what University of Bristol students go on to do after they leave university? Are you looking for inspiration? Take a look at our Case Studies – real life accounts providing a fascinating insight into the world of graduate employment. In our profiles, Philip details his experiences as a graduate trainee at The Guardian, Ciara describes her role as a Consultant at EY, Elinam talks about entering further study, and Gowrishanker outlines his experiences of setting up his own business.

Hear from the graduates themselves about how having a degree from Bristol helped them to get where they are now. Did they start out with a clear career path in mind? Was the degree subject helpful in getting the job? Did they decide to pursue further study to improve their chances of finding the right job? How are they practising and developing the knowledge and skills they acquired whilst studying? How did a degree from the University of Bristol help to open doors to the career they were looking for?

Perhaps you feel as though you no longer want to follow the path that your degree naturally leads you to? Many of our case studies show how there are various alternative career paths out there where the skills and experience you have gained from studying for your degree can be put to good use: Greg, a Mechanical Engineering graduate who works as a Patent Attorney, Hannah, the Experimental Psychology graduate working as a Business Consultant for IBM, and Rosie, a Politics graduate working in the charity sector.  

All of our graduates give excellent hints and tips for students that are exploring their career options – start thinking about your next steps early, make use of the careers service, never stop learning and “Network! Network! Network!”

Join our Careers Network to access more case studies and get in touch with Bristol alumni.

What do you do with a BA in… ? :/


If you’re struggling to decide what to do after you graduate, discovering what the previous graduates from your course have gone on to do is a good place to find inspiration.

DLHE logoThe Careers Service talk to around 80% of graduates each year to find out what they are doing six months after graduation as part of the Destination of Leavers from Higher Education (DLHE) survey. We collect data about their jobs or next course of study, and make this information available on our our what do Bristol graduates do webpage. The results make for fascinating reading.

Jobs

Last year, around 70 per cent of graduates entered employment in the six months after graduation, with the majority (85%) entering a professional or managerial position. Bristol graduates are very much in control of their employment options post-graduation, with three in five indicating that they chose their job because it fitted exactly into their career plan.

And these career plans are where it gets really interesting. For example, some of last year’s English graduates started roles in marketing, journalism and publishing; but a large proportion chose to use the skills they gained during their degree to do something different, entering careers as tailors, internet fraud specialists and psychotherapists.

Further study

Many Bristol graduates choose to continue their studies, taking higher level qualifications to gain more subject specific experience. Last year’s English graduates are now researching topics including children’s literature and literary theory. But for others, further study is an opportunity to draw on their academic accomplishments for an entirely new purpose.

Of last year’s graduates starting the Graduate Diploma in Law, for example, one fifth were history graduates. Other graduates chose to pursue their passion in acting, to start a new language course in Japanese, or to embark on a new career as a medic through a graduate entry programme.

Location

Where to be after graduation is often as important a consideration as what to do. The south west is home to both big businesses and small enterprises, so Bristol graduates have great opportunities to start their careers in the local area. Last year, one quarter of English graduates stayed in the south west region, with Bristol being the most popular city location.

But if you feel like spreading your wings, you will find recent alumni working and studying throughout Europe, the United States and Canada. Some seek out opportunities much further afield, in locations such as East Timor (if you like the heat) and the British Antarctic Territory (if you prefer it a little cooler).

Be inspired

The only limit to deciding where you want to be after graduating is your own imagination.

Graduands in the procession out of the Great Hall at the end of a summer 2012 graduation ceremonyThe Careers Service is here to help you explore the range of options available to you – use our online resources to get inspired, or contact us for more advice!