What can I bring to the table?
Like all students, graduates with disabilities need to focus on their strengths, key skills and positive experiences to make them employable. Many students are modest and underplay their achievements so being reflective and self-aware is key.
You will have gained positive experiences from the following situations:
- Your academic study
- Any work experience and internships
- Any positions of responsibility
- Any other key achievements e.g. community work, fundraising, the Arts and sport
If you are not sure about your skills why not try this employability skills audit, which will highlight your top attributes.
Or perhaps try this which will highlight your personal qualities
This is certainly not applicable in all cases, but in some situations candidates with disabilities have had to overcome more hurdles. This can be used in interviews to show determination, focus and strength of character.
Please see the video below on this subject,
Another key challenge is opportunity awareness – knowing what is out there and where to find it.
Firstly there is help available via workshops and 1-1 appointments through Central Careers (The Hub 1st floor) and your faculty placement unit e.g.
- Health and Life Sciences Employability Placement Unit
- EC Futures (EEC students) https://share.coventry.ac.uk/students/Employability/Pages/Home.aspx
- Faculty of Business and Law Support Team
- Faculty of Art and Humanities – Creative Futures
These departments are employed by the university to support students with decision making, advice and help with finding opportunities. The placement units have a particular focus on placements, but also support students more widely.
The Central Careers team has a Careers Consultant for each faculty, offering specialist support for any student from year 1 to postgraduate with careers queries.
Please see the bottom of this section for contact details.
Making the transition
The other key issue is making the leap from being a student to becoming a graduate employee on someone on a great placement. Issues that face students include:
- How to apply for jobs
- How/when/if to disclose disabilities
- How to write effective applications and CVs
- Dealing with interviews
- Coping with Assessment centres
Practise, support, self awareness and advice are vital when negotiating these hurdles and the good thing is that help and resources are out there – please see the resources section at the end of this section.
Alternatively drop into see one of our central careers staff, including the Careers Consultants. We can support via 1-1 meetings, phone, email and Skype. We are based on the Hub 1st Floor
HLS – Euan McCall
EEC – Paddy Bradley
FBL (BES) – Samira Dar
FAH – Ruth Guy
Postgrad/International– Chris Steventon
Accurate up to April 25 2016, Euan McCall