For most programmes, you are required to give a short presentation about your Placement experience, either during the Academic visit or, more usually, on your return to college. This Presentation will form part of the Academic Assessment of your Placement. Your Academic Mentor will advise you of the specific requirements for your programme.
For some programmes, your Placement Manager will meet your class after you return to college to have a debriefing session on your Placement. You will have a chance to give feedback on your company, the work you did, as well as your overall experience. This will be valuable in helping us develop the programme in the future.
At this meeting, you will be encouraged to relate and apply the knowledge gained during Placement to your college studies and to build on the self-confidence you developed in the workplace.
Advice will be given on how to update your CV with your Placement work experience, so that you have it ready to send to graduate employers. And you will be encouraged to think about what you would like to do after college and to consider your graduate options.
After you finish your Placement, it is an ideal time to update your CV with your Placement work experience. This may be the first job you have had that is relevant to your course. So, it is a very valuable addition to your CV and will be significant in attracting potential employers in the future.
To update your CV, look back through your Log Book and Placement Report to remind yourself of the skills and abilities you developed during Placement. This will include skills that are specific to your course and also personal or 'transferable skills' e.g. communication or problem-solving skills. Summarise and highlight these skills, taking time to word the content carefully, so that it makes the most of your work experience.
Include your main duties and responsibilities, any training completed, achievements or recognition received as well as any initiatives taken by you in the workplace.
Call to our Careers Service, where you can get help in checking over your updated CV.
When you were in the workplace, we advised you to make the most of your Placement, by getting to know the people in your team and also those in other departments in the business. This is what we call networking.
Over the past few months, you made many friends in your company and it is important to keep in touch with these people and to start off a network of contacts within your industry area. Often, your work colleagues are a valuable source of information on graduate jobs and may be of help to you in the future.
During the Exit Interview at the end of Placement, you asked your Industrial Mentor for permission to use their name as a work referee on your CV. Keep in contact with this person, as you will want him/her to remember you, when it comes to giving a reference!
If you have a final year project that you could complete on behalf of your company, this is an excellent way to keep the contacts alive and to build on the good work relationships you developed during Placement.
Most students go on Placement at the end of third year and return to college for their final year. Once back on campus, it is time for you to think about what you would like to do after graduation - the main options are to look for a graduate job or to do further study.
If you are interested in getting a job, the Careers Service organises a number of events on campus, such as the Milk-round, which runs from November through to February and the Recruitment Fairs, which are held in October and March. At these events, you can meet employers and get information on graduate vacancies or graduate training programmes. Applications for some training courses must be made in early October, so it is important that you find out about these well in advance.
Alternatively, if you are interested in postgraduate study, the Careers Service organises a Post-grad Fair in February, where you can get details on all the relevant courses available in Ireland. We also give a presentation on Post-grad Options in the US, which is held in early October. Applications for courses in the US or UK must be made in late October/ early November, so it is important that you find out about these well in advance. For most courses in Ireland, applications are made in February.