Helping to prepare students for the world of work

Published on : 5/30/19
  • At Sodexo, we understand the pressures on today’s university students. Faced with average debts of £50,000 by the time they leave, it is understandable that they expect their university experience to equip them with the skills and aptitude to successfully enter the world of work after they graduate. 

    By Tracey Smith, Managing Director, Student Living by Sodexo

    Our Student Living by Sodexo team knows this more than most, having regular contact with students in their home away from home. 
    That’s why, as a strategic partner to the universities we work with, we are not only focused on ensuring students live in safe and welcoming accommodation, but also on how we can support them through the whole lifecycle of the student journey. This includes helping to provide them with skills that will help them succeed and thrive long after they’ve packed away the books. 

    As the world’s 19th largest employer, Sodexo has a wealth of talent, experience and employer insight that we were only too pleased to share with University of Greenwich students when we were approached about holding an employability skills event by the university. This was the second year we’d been asked to run this session, following the overwhelmingly positive feedback of the first employability event in 2018. 

    The event was held at our London headquarters in Holborn, with around 20 students attending the session. It was led by myself and Andrew Wilkinson, Chief Executive Officer of Sodexo’s schools and universities business, with support from our resourcing and communications teams. 

    Andrew and I shared our experiences and career paths, which I hope gave the students a sense of just how much your career can change if you allow yourself to be open to new opportunities. We also highlighted the diverse breadth of careers available at Sodexo. 

    The resourcing team then shared some information and tips about CV and interview preparation. We also asked the students to think about personal branding, giving them the opportunity to test their initial ideas about their personal brand on us. 

    We were delighted to be joined at the event by a law student, Tafara Philip Mukurumbi, who had attended the 2018 session and found it so useful that he’d become a big advocate for the event and for Sodexo, encouraging his fellow students to attend. It was great to see Tafara again and have such positive feedback from him, and we’re pleased to have been to nurture this relationship even further by linking him in with our legal department to discuss work placement opportunities.
    At Sodexo, we are always looking at how we can add value to our partnerships and improve the quality of life for students beyond their living arrangements. These employability events are a great example of how we can use our knowledge and networks to do this, providing tangible and practical benefits to our clients and their student populations. 

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