“The only word I knew how to say was Konichiwa,” Lisa-Rose Moller from Career Central says of her two year stint teaching in a rural town twelve hours from Tokyo. When students are asked to stick a flag where they want to work or intern abroad on a world map at careers events, Japan is always covered in flags. However, the British Council found one of the main barriers for students was a fear about not speaking another language.
Global Opportunities Week, 12-16 February, is aimed at informing students of the opportunities available to work abroad.
Students seeking to go global after graduation can find a whole host of information and opportunities to talk to potential employees. These include language taster workshops – a fun chance to try out another language for the first time with fluent students.
There are events for language speakers and non-language speakers. International students are also catered for with events like an Opportunities for Malaysian students session on Friday 16 February.
UEA graduates abroad will answer job-hunting questions via Skype. Such alumni include Chris Teale, a History and Politics graduate, who will speak about his experience in the USA working as a news reporter and Alex Brander, a Politics graduate, who works in Singapore as a Facebook partner manager.
Career Central say working abroad gives job applicants a huge edge over other candidates, with UK companies receiving thousands of applications at a time. However, less than one percent of UK graduates seek work opportunities abroad. Worries about finance, visas, health concerns, and leaving life in the UK put students off, according to the British Council.
Now in its fourth year running, Global Opportunities week will host sessions addressing these concerns. For example, many students are unaware of the potential opportunities to receive funding to work abroad. These include Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL), in addition to funded internships in finance and journalism. Career Central also offer their own Employability Bursary of up to £500, including opportunities for working abroad.
One of the week’s highlights will be a Global Mini Careers Fair, on Thursday 15 February. This will run in the evening at the Julian Study Centre and see employers from companies like the High Commission of Canda, Camp America, and the Daiwa Foundation speak about the opportunities they offer students in the UK.
Students can book onto any of the week’s sessions in advance by logging into MyCareerCentral.