Networking Tips for Students

We have a couple of events coming up in March where our students will get the opportunity to network with potential employers. A lot of students won’t have very much experience of networking, so the careers team have put together some downloads to help. They are available at the bottom of this post.


Upcoming Events:

From Monday 16 March, the Lancaster campus is holding a ‘Career Ahead Showcase Week‘ – this week will include a Supply Teaching Fair, a Volunteering & Part-Time Jobs Fair, an Employer Fair, as well as the annual Nursing Conference. All of these events will give students the opportunity to talk to potential employers.  Take a look at the events calendar for more details.

On Thursday 19 March at Brampton Road, the careers team, along with the alumni team, are holding a ‘Creative Networking‘ event for all current students and alumni who are either studying or working in a creative area. More details are available here.

On Friday 27 March, the Carlisle campus will be holding our annual Nursing Conference for final year nursing students.


Networking Tips – Downloads:

Top Networking Tips – Planning and Preparation
Top Networking Tips – How to strike up a conversation
Top Networking Tips – How to keep the conversation going


Study law for a versatile degree

A blog article by New York University global professor Professor Gary Slapper

What have Barack Obama, Derren Brown, Gandhi, Jerry Springer, John Cleese, Gerard Butler, Nelson Mandela, Henri Matisse, Margaret Thatcher, Franz Kafka, Sandy Toksvig, and Gaby Logan got in common? Not much – other than that they all studied law.

A law degree is the most versatile of qualifications. It can prepare you for a career in law, and so much more. There is really just one career for a graduate of dental surgery but for law graduates there are multifarious paths to success.

A good legal mind can benefit the world in a rainbow variety of ways. Many law graduates proceed to become solicitors or barristers but, equally, many others use the qualification to become successful in commercial life, the media, the civil service, corporations, local government, teaching, campaign organisations, and politics – over 80 MPs, for example, have law degrees.

Law is something that affects everyone, all the time. The law is everyone’s law. Law permeates into every cell of social life. It governs everything from the embryo to exhumation. It governs the air we breathe, the food and drink that we consume, our travel, sexuality, family relationships, our property, technology, sport, science, employment, business, education, health, everything from neighbour disputes to war

As law touches all parts of life, who gets to be the lawyers and judges in our society is important. The American comedian, Jerry Seinfeld said that a lawyer is basically the person who knows the rules of the country. He said we are all throwing the dice, playing the game, moving our pieces around the board, but if there is a problem, the lawyer is the only person who has read the instructions.

Law governs every facet of human life so there is something in the discipline for everyone, including the law related to science, technology, sport, entertainment, business, politics, finance, insurance, criminal justice, banking, accidents, families, employment, property, cars, medicine, and international affairs.

Law graduates show prowess in many of the abilities employers now rank as critically important. A university legal education equips students with a formidable library of knowledge and a magnificent portfolio of skills. Law degrees certify that their holders have a high command of literature, unusual communication skill, rigorous powers of analysis, numeracy, IT proficiency, argumentative and evaluative prowess, advanced problem-solving capability, the ability to research thoroughly and accurately, and presentational expertise.

Not everyone who opts to study law does so for the same reason, or with high ideals. In an episode of The Simpsons, there is a moment when the juvenile delinquent Jimbo Jones has a go at helping a group of local people who are trying to cut down crime in their community. But things go badly wrong for him. He turns around to another group member and says:

“Hey man, You’ve really let me down. Now, I don’t believe in anything anymore. I’m joining Law School”

However, joining law school is, for most students, an entrance through the portals of inspiring intellectual power into a world vibrant with the science of reasoning, and the art of persuasion.

If you play Monopoly, chess, or football, it is a great advantage to know the rules well. The law is the rulebook applicable to the entire canvas of life. It is a rulebook rich in history, intrigue, thrills, cunning, comedy, and tragedy. Those who are expert in its contents are indispensable. As a matter of social health, there should be law graduates everywhere to guard against the danger once observed by the author John le Carré: “it’s always wonderful what a lawyer can achieve when nobody knows the law”.


Professor Gary Slapper is Global Professor at New York University, Director of NYU London, and a door tenant at 36 Bedford Row. The third edition of his book How the Law Works is published by Routledge. He is on Twitter @garyslapper.

Original post can be found here:

Friday’s Featured Vacancy – 27/02/2015


BBC Bristol is filming an episode of the BBC1 antiques programme Flog It! at Muncaster Castle, Ravenglass on Thursday 23rd April 2015, and we are looking for 10 people aged 18 or over to be Event Runners on the day. The role will include assisting in co-ordinating the public and our film crews, organising refreshments, helping to set up the space and also dealing with some of the antiques.

It is a great opportunity for students who are looking to gain experience in television and the media, and to see what happens on a day’s filming for the BBC. We will offer a casual contract and pay the minimum wage. Lunch and refreshments will be provided on the day. We would be grateful if you could pass the enclosed poster onto students that you feel this would appeal to.

If there are students who are interested, they can contact us by email:

Successful applicants must have a current passport OR full birth certificate with NI Card/P45/P60 for registration and identification purposes.

If you require any further information please call us on 0117 974 7839.

The best careers for your personality type

Ever wondered why you are drawn to certain careers and not others? For example, are you convinced you’d be happiest if you were a writer and not a boardroom executive? You might think your job preference goes hand in hand with your career training, but it often runs deeper than that.

Your personality type has a lot to do with why you fancy some jobs over others. Truity Psychometrics, a provider of online personality and career assessments, and the developer of the TypeFinder personality type assessment, put together a useful infographic with details of career options preferred by the various personality types recognized today.

The infographic breaks down psychologist Carl Jung’s 16 different four-letter personality types and dissects how people make decisions and understand the world based on the four dimensions of personality types – introvert, extrovert, thinker or a feeler. Check out the infographic below. Understanding your personality type can be critical in helping you find your true calling and a lifelong career that makes you happy.

Found via Lifehack:


Basic Guide to Becoming a Self-employed Student (Part 2)


Business Start-up Essentials – To do list

Imagining your idea actually coming into fruition is very exciting! What follows is, admittedly, less exciting but crucial to your success. These include your responsibilities as a self-employed student and some basic good business advice.

1. Name your business

A tricky and vital decision. Always bear in mind that you want people to know that you take your business seriously. Humour means that people may remember you for the wrong reasons. A double entendre may be hilarious to you but may not be appreciated by your customers. Keep it clear, easy to pronounce and something that adds confidence to your business idea. There are also some regulations around trading names that you will need to investigate before you go printing business cards.

2. Register with HMRC

As a self-employed person you become responsible for paying the tax on your earnings, otherwise known as income tax. It also means that you pay your own National Insurance Contributions and those of any employees. You are legally obliged to register during your first three months of trading.

National Insurance

As a self-employed person you will currently pay Class 2 and Class 4 National Insurance Contributions. This depends on what you earn and the amounts change every year. For the 2014-15 tax year, if you make more than £5,885 profit then you pay £2.75 per week in Class 2 NICs. Class 4 NICs apply if you have an annual profit between £7,956 and £41,865 then you pay 9% on that amount. Any profit over the latter figure is subject to a 2% payment.

There are also tax allowances and reliefs that you can claim that are specifically for the self-employed.

Tax Returns

You are also legally bound to submit a Self-Assessment Tax Return every year. There are different deadlines for this depending on whether you send your form online or in the post and there are fines for lateness. The actual payments of the tax you owe are usually made twice a year on 31st January and 31st July.

TOP TIP! Save 20% of your earnings as you go so you owe tax you have it there to pay.

3. Set up a business bank account

It is wise to keep business and personal affairs separate – at least financially! There are some good business banking deals available if you shop around and it will make it easier to track your business finances. You can also get tax relief on the cost of your banking fees.

4. Establish your record keeping system

You are responsible for recording all of your business’s expenses, bills, debts and sales. When it comes to accounts and book-keeping it is absolutely crucial that you are organised, accurate and entirely up-to-date. It’s not just about transparency for the tax office, it’s about business success. Keep your paperwork current, don’t put it off, there can be no ‘all-nighters’! All records should be kept for six tax years just in case HMRC ask for them.

5. Find out if you need to also register to pay Value Added Tax (V.A.T.)

If you make a certain level of turnover then you MUST register for and pay VAT. This amount changes with each tax year. For example, from April 2014, if your turnover reached £81,000 then you had to be VAT registered.

Whilst this sum may seem massive and faraway at the start of a business, you don’t know how quickly yours will grow. It is your responsibility to register within 30 days or there is a fine from HMRC.

Some business owners decide to register for VAT even before they reach the threshold. This can be because you can claim back VAT on certain business expenses and can lend credibility to your business. There is also a flat rate VAT scheme available. Your accountant will be able to advise you what is best for your business as you develop.

6. Construction Industry Scheme

If your business is within the construction industry as a sub-contractor or contractor then you need to register with the Construction Industry Scheme (C.I.S.).

7. Insure your business

Different types of business and trading have different legal insurance requirements. As a self-employed business you are responsible for ensuring that you are covered – “I didn’t know” is not an accepted defence and the fines are massive!

  • Professional Indemnity means that you are covered if a client sues you because they are unhappy with the business advice you gave or the service you provided.
  • Public Liability Insurance covers you for any injuries to 3rd parties or property damage that has been caused by your business.
  • If you have any employees that are not your family then you must have Employers Liability insurance for a minimum of £5 million and have this on display.
  • Depending on what you do you may need Contents, Stock and Materials or Vehicle Insurance.

This may all seem like the concerns of big businesses that are far removed from your fledgling business, but yours is just as legitimate and governed by the same laws. You might not need to know right now, but you may need to be organising this in 6 months’ time.


There is a great, free e-learning tutorial on HMRC’s website called ‘Starting Your Own Business’ LINK TO which can support you through this process.

It breaks everything down into modules that you can do at your own pace and repeat as often as you need to. It covers a range of subjects from registering with HMRC to how to do your Self-Assessment tax return online and everything in-between!


We hope this guide has helped break down the tax part of ‘becoming self-employed’. Take your idea, energy and enthusiasm and get building your very own business!

You can do it, just don’t ignore any aspect of your responsibilities, follow the regulations and get professional advice when you need it. 

Good luck!


This article was written by Tony Shanks Operations Director at

Friday’s Featured Vacancy – 20/02/2015


Summer 2015 Internship Opportunities – (One year Placement)

Energize your career with Westinghouse Electric Company!

Our commitment to safe, clean nuclear energy is second to none. If you are interested in being a part of a company that values exceeding customer expectations and providing future generations around the globe with emission-free energy, we want to hear from you.

Through our four core businesses – Nuclear Fuel, Automation and field Services, Nuclear Power Plants and Engineering equipment and major projects we’re committed to delivering superior services and value to our utility customers worldwide.

Westinghouse, UK is currently looking for talented students interested in placement opportunities. We are seeking applicants in the following disciplines:
• Process/Chemical
• Mechanical
• Physics
• Business
• Environmental
• Electrical
• Accounts/ finance
• Metallurgical
• Electronics

The successful placement candidates for this position MUST possess the following:
1. At the time of the placement – the candidate must have completed at least one year of their degree, but not have completed their final year of study.
2. A minimum grade average of 2.1.
3. Pursuing a BSc, MSc or BEng, MEng degree in an appropriate discipline.

To apply, please visit
Click on Search Openings and leave all the fields to “All”
Click “Search”
You will then see “1 year placement opportunities Internships” select this and click apply to job.

For any queries or issues, please contact Jill Marrow on 01772 763616.

Westinghouse Electric Company is a group company of Toshiba Corporation. Check us out at

Closing date for applications is 31st March 2015.

Securing your first teaching post – advice for NQTs

Get that job social media poster IMG-SML

With the ‘Get That Teaching Job’ events running this week at our Lancaster campus yesterday, and our Carlisle campus tomorrow, I thought it would be a good opportunity to share this handy hand-out with you – lots of useful information for final year teaching students, about to embark on their NQT year! 

You can download a pdf of this guide at the bottom of the post!


Your NQT induction

Terms and conditions for successful completion of the NQT induction are determined by the NCTL, and are regularly reviewed and updated. To be sure you have the most accurate and up to date info check: 

Statutory Guidance for the induction of NQTs (England) December 2013 (revised October 2014) available here:


Teacher Recruitment info as available Feb 2015

The NUT Guide “First Post” is updated every year and is available as a download or sent as a hard copy to members.  On the webpage there is a really useful interactive map showing all areas geographically and their preferred mode of recruitment of NQTs (pool or otherwise).  However, do check each area; it is your responsibility to ensure you have the latest accurate information.  Things do change, even during an academic year.


Sources of Vacancies

Many authorities and schools do not advertise in national press nowadays, choosing instead to keep costs down by using own local authority websites as above.  However do also check:

  • University of Cumbria JobShop:
  • Local and regional press
  • Specialist publications e.g. Jewish Times, Catholic Teaching Gazette

The National press may have international opportunities and more senior roles:

Other teaching options include:


Sources of support


Local Information and Pools

Register for tailored alerts from those that you are interested in!

Cumbria – Apply direct to job adverts (no NQT pool). Vacancies at:

Durham – Durham local authority operates a pool of NQTs to which primary head teachers have access. The pool opened in January 2015. Application forms are available from the Education Development Service Tel: 03000 265 852. Visit for more vacancies.

Lancashire – Apply direct to job adverts (no NQT pool). Vacancies at: Note that all supply teaching in Lancashire is through LTA:

Manchester – – Apply direct to job adverts (no NQT pool). Vacancies at: and

Oldham – NQT Pool opened Jan 2015, visit for vacancies

Bury – NQT Pool open, closing date 20 February 2015. Vacancy is listed here:

Blackburn with Darwen – NQT pool open, first 120 applicants are guaranteed an interview. Closing date 28 February 2015, interviews take place 13 March 2015. For more information contact Joanne Brown on Tel: 01254 666512 or Email:

Blackpool, Flyde, Rochdale, Salford, Tameside, Bolton, Trafford, Wigan, Stockport and more advertise posts on

Not local, but… we also have lots of our previous students working in Suffolk – their NQT pool opened December 2014 and closes on 31 May 2015. Always keen on University of Cumbria NQTs!


Useful Links


Download your own pdf here: Securing Your First Teaching Post