Thinking about the Cardiff Award but want a bit more information before applying? We’ve put together a list of frequently asked questions about the programme to provide you with some further guidance about how it all works.
What’s involved exactly?
To achieve The Cardiff Award students will complete the following steps:
- Apply for the Award.
- Attend an induction session.
- Complete 70 hours of extra-curricular experience (35 hours can come from a course placement).
- Attend and participate in five employability workshops.
- Complete one further recruitment experience, chosen from a range of activities
- Submit your Cardiff Award portfolio
Students have 12 -18 months to complete the programme.
How many extracurricular hours per week am I expected to commit to?
It’s to your discretion, but all 70 hours must be completed by 1st March 2018. You can start counting these hours as soon as you’re accepted on the programme.
What counts as “extracurricular” activities?
These are activities that will help you develop employability skills and give you experiences you can detail on your CV/application forms and in interviews. Activities include;
- Leadership / active participation / positions of responsibility within Student Union Societies or Student Media.
- Volunteering through Student Volunteering Cardiff (SVC) or off campus.
- Paid casual/temp/part time work on (through job shop) or off campus (note some of these activities have an hours cap as the work is repetitive in nature).
- Experience Works.
- Classroom Experience Project.
- Entrepreneurial Activities.
- Student Mentors/Student Mentor Coordinators.
- Sports Coaching / Director / Producer / Choreographer
- Student Enterprise Challenges/Competitions (e.g. ENACTUS/IGNITE).
- Being an academic representative within a university department.
- Language courses offered through Languages for All (hours are capped).
- Student tutoring.
- Courses run from the Skills Development Service.
- Being a Campus Ambassador / Student Brand Manager / University Ambassador
This is not an exhaustive list, if you are involved in an activity not listed the general rule is: if you are actively involved in a project as a volunteer, or are paid to complete work then it counts. If you’re unsure, just ask the Award team.
I am undertaking ….. activity. Does it count towards my extracurricular hours?
When considering which activities count towards your extracurricular hours, ask yourself these 4 questions;
- Does this contribute towards professional development?
- Can I demonstrate how I have developed any of the key skills?
- Will I use this on my CV/in an application form/at an interview?
- Can I evidence the hours?
The most important aspect of the activities you undertake is that they help to develop your employability and will be valuable to you in terms of skills development and building evidence of this.
Where can I find out about extracurricular activities?
Students will generally source their own extracurricular activities, but we will also provide you with guidance throughout the year about activities that are recognised by the Award. When you’re accepted on the programme, you will also be given an extracurricular activities guide with recommended programmes and we will send you regular email updates with new ideas throughout the year. We also tweet and retweet recognised activities regularly!
I’m going on placement for my course, can I count these hours?
Up to 35 hours (50%) from a course placement can be counted toward your Award hours.
What are the employability workshops that I need to complete?
There are 5 compulsory workshops, including:
- CVs and covering letters
- Application forms
- Interview Skills
- LinkedIn Masterclass
- Commercial Awareness
All workshops will be available through Career & Employability Service and can be booked through the intranet.
I’ve seen that my School & some employers run these workshops, can I count these?
Similar workshops run through University Schools or by particular graduate recruiters will also be considered but you must check with The Cardiff Award Team that these can be accepted as alternatives.
What does the recruitment experience involve?
As part of the programme you’ll complete one recruitment experience. Here is are some examples you can choose from:
- Attend a mock assessment centre
- Deliver a presentation
- Attend a mock one-to-one or group interview
- Record a mock video interview
- Complete a series of Psychometric tests
- Produce a business plan summary
We recommend you choose an option that would benefit you most when you begin to apply for graduate roles.
Is the recruitment experience assessed?
No, you don’t need to pass this to pass the Award this is simply your opportunity to practice. We will provide students with feedback from their experience.
How do I complete the Cardiff Award portfolio?
You will submit your portfolio once you’ve completed all the other elements of the Award. It will include:
- Application form
- Targeted CV and covering letter
- Reflective log
It will also include forms that will evidence all your activities & workshops. These will be provided at your Cardiff Award induction.
Will I have support during the programme?
YES! The Cardiff Award team will be available throughout the year to support you on your Award journey. If you’re accepted onto the Award, we will invite you to an induction with further information about the programme. We also hold regular drop-in sessions for Award students, and host events such as Award coffee afternoons where you can call in with any questions. You can always email us as well!
Our Cardiff Award Mentors are also a great resource and available to meet with students for drop in sessions to provide further advice & guidance.
How do I apply?
To apply for the programme, please send a copy of your CV with a covering letter to CardiffAward@cardiff.ac.uk detailing why you want to be accepted onto the award and what you hope to gain from completing the programme by 15 February 2017 at the latest.
- Spaces are limited and we encourage applications as soon as possible.
- The Cardiff Award is open to first, second and penultimate year students.
- Once accepted onto the Award, students will be sent details of the induction workshops.
I don’t have a CV, can I still apply?
Don’t worry if your CV isn’t a masterpiece. We are looking to see where you are at the moment to help you identify how to make the most from the Cardiff Award. If you don’t have a CV, simply put your education and any employment history you have into a word document and send this.