What can you remember from your own work experience or work placement days? 

I can clearly recall how instrumental my own work experience placements were to my personal and professional development; my understanding and respect for ‘real life’ work, being made to feel part of a professional environment and being spoken to as an equal. Being included and given an opportunity to add value, however small that value may have been meant a GREAT deal to me. 

Things have moved on enormously in the world of work experience placements over the years, as have apprenticeship schemes and programmes. Now in 2021, we have introduced a brand new module that forms part of the international postgraduate master’s degree in the Business, Engineering and Computing subject areas in the form of Advanced Practice Placements. These 12 week placements, commencing from September 21st, will enrich our postgraduates experiences beyond the classroom- something that is extremely valuable at this time. 

Our own University’s Vice Chancellor and Chief Executive Professor Maria Hinfelaar recently set out the worrying times ahead for students who had started their studies when the world was looking very different, yet now face uncertain prospects and continued disruption as a result of the pandemic:

In the midst of this crisis, a talented generation of tens of thousands of young people as well as mature students graduated in the summer of 2020 from universities and other places of education, full of energy and ambition.

Another cohort will follow in a few months’ time, which will have again seen massive disruption to their lives. So what can be done to harness their potential and to ensure that our society does not witness a lost generation, scarred by circumstances not of their making?”

This is where we can step in and play our part in the renewal and recovery effort which is to come. The Enterprise Team at Wrexham Glyndŵr University is dedicated to helping find exciting learning opportunities for our students where they can gain valuable work experience, through our strong collaboration with a wide range of industries. 

As we reach out to businesses in the local and surrounding areas to partner with us and to offer short term work placements for our international postgraduate students, we hope to strengthen not only our relationships with our contacts in industry and business, but to also play a part in nurturing the culture within existing workplaces that may be in need of some skillset diversity, and to explore the wider picture of opportunity when it comes to the benefits of industry-academia collaboration.

Whilst workplace diversity offers numerous benefits, including increased productivity and profitability, it is also known that diverse teams tend to perform better. By inviting our postgraduates into your business, you are opening up the possibility of new ways of problem solving, as well as the opportunity to gain some fresh analytical thinking. This in turn will contribute to increasing the innovation within your business, ensuring that you are leading for the future. 

Despite this still being an uncertain time for many businesses, we are confident that taking part in an Advanced Practice Placement Partnership is a positive step forward for local businesses and companies, as they themselves look to the future post-pandemic. What’s more, our students have adapted to virtual learning incredibly well over the past year, so if you are only in a position to be able to offer a virtual placement at this time then that would also be most welcomed! 

If Advanced Practice Placements are something you’d like to explore further, our team would love to hear from you via enterprise@glyndwr.ac.uk for full placement details see also Advanced Practice Placements.

 

 

Written by Ann Bell, Bilingual Communications Officer at Wrexham Glyndŵr University.