After months of revision and hard work, finally (for most of you) the dreaded exams are over! Time to enjoy the sunshine and plan summer trips with your friends? Of course, but also think about getting some work experience. Student jobs in the UK come in all shapes and sizes, and is guaranteed to boost your CV.

This doesn’t have to be over the whole summer period, undoubtedly some of you will want to return to your home country to see your family.

However, getting some experience can boost your CV and give you a competitive edge when it comes to applying for graduate jobs.

Firstly, what are you legally able to do?

According to the UKCISA (UK Council for International Student Affairs), you should:

“Check what your passport sticker (entry clearance or residence permit) or biometric residence permit (BRP) says. You should also have received detailed information in a letter when you received your entry clearance or BRP. You can work in the UK if your passport sticker or identity card says one of the following, or something similar:

– Work (and any changes) must be authorised
– Able to work as authorised by the Secretary of State
– Work as in Tier 4 Rules
– Restricted Work. P/T term time. F/T vacations
– Restricted work term time
– Work limited to max 20 hrs per week during term-time
– Work limited to max 10 hrs per week during term-time”

This means you can work full time during your summer vacation/holiday.

Please note: If you are a 12 month or second year 24 month Masters student, the dissertation period until your official programme end date is not considered vacation.

Student jobs in the UK: what are your options?

Pretty much anything you like. If you are allowed to work, you can do most kinds of work, including work placements and internships. However, there are some kinds of work you must not do:

  • self-employment or business activity
  • work as a professional sportsperson
  • entertainer
  • a permanent full-time job
  • doctor or dentist in training, unless you are on the foundation programme

What if it’s too late to find an internship?

Internships and work placements are a great choice to build your experience, however they are not your only choice. There are plenty of other ways you can gain valuable work experience.

Before searching for student jobs in the UK, think about any skills gaps you have.
For example, could you improve your English language skills?
Do you need to work on your basic I.T. skills?
Do you lack experience of working in an office environment?

Be honest with yourself, and try to work on those skills gaps. If you have not got an internship lined up don’t worry, just make sure you apply for the right summer job.

Five Surprising Student Jobs in the UK that Boost your CV:

1) Reception work, admin and data entry – gain insight into office life and culture, develop organisational skills and essential admin skills

2) Restaurant, bar and retail work – team working skills plus shows you can work hard doing long shifts on your feet all day, able to deal with customers, familiar with handling money and managing stock levels

3) Summer camps – shows responsibility as often requires being in charge of groups of children and teenagers, shows confidence and good communication skills

4) Charity fundraising – this type of work requires you to be enthusiastic, energetic and driven by targets

5) Telesales – develop excellent communication skills, able to work under pressure and to daily/weekly targets, experience in dealing directly with B2C or B2B customers

During these types of job you will be learning a great deal and building practical work experience. Employers will see that you are able to manage yourself, arrive on time, and deal with having a manager/boss.

Do not underestimate the value of this type of experience – the skills you gain can easily give you the competitive edge over candidates without any experience but an equally good academic record!

Remember, work experience is the most valuable asset you have.



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