University of Southampton

Careers and employability

At Southampton we are dedicated to improving your employability. We help you to stand out by offering you opportunities to gain new skills that will complement your degree studies.

Opportunities include placements (past companies involved include Eaton, Zurich, Mayflower Theatre, Ordnance Survey and Ransom Publishing), workshops and clinics, volunteering and enterprise.

The University of Southampton has recently been named as one of the top 20 universities targeted by the largest number of top employers in the High Fliers Research Group's 2015 Graduate Market report.

We offer a range of services and activities to help you get the most out of your time here and graduate with more than an excellent degree from a world-class, research-focused university.

Whatever your level of study, life after university can be daunting. We help to make this process easy and exciting, providing as much help and support as possible.

Your employability

We encourage and support you in taking as many opportunities as you can to enhance your employability. Some of the opportunities available include joining societies, from the performing arts and student media to debate society and a wide range of sports teams. We have over 200 societies to choose from.

We can also support you in making the transferable skills you gained from these experiences and your studies clear to potential employers, to give you a competitive edge.

Career Destinations

Career Destinations is a service dedicated to helping you develop your employability, increasing your experience, confidence and connections at any stage of your career journey.

Our extensive range of workshops, drop-in sessions, networking events and careers fairs provide the guidance you need to make the most of your skills.

Career Destinations

Receive support and advice from Career Destinations

Career Destinations

Services we provide

• help with placement opportunities and internships, including our Excel Placement scheme.

• workshops and clinics to help you with your CV and interview skills

• informal drop-in sessions to suit your needs

assessment centre events and audits to help you decide your future

• working with potential employers, including mentoring programmes and employer connections

• advice on entrepreneurship, including self-employment and setting up your own business

We have an extensive careers events calendar where you can find all the activities run by us throughout the year. There is also an extensive collection of online resources to help you, and we can arrange to support you via telephone or video conferences.

Our careers advice services are available to alumni for up to three years after your graduation.

Find out more about Career Destinations.

Volunteering opportunities

Volunteering can be rewarding

You will gain valuable skills and make a difference to the community

Volunteering can be rewarding

Volunteering makes a difference in the community and provides you with valuable experiences, improving your employability helping to inform your future career choices.

You will gain transferable skills like teamwork, problem solving and time management. Your problem-solving skills and confidence can also be developed.

Current students can join the University’s Volunteering group which has links to around 150 UK-based third sector organisations, charities, community groups and public bodies, and posts regular updates on the latest volunteering opportunities. You can visit the group's Sharepoint Site for more information.

At SUSU, the Students' Union, there are also a range of clubs and societies that you can get involved with, as well as volunteer positions within the student union team.


Explore our volunteering opportunities, or email to find out more about volunteering at Southampton.

Internships, placements and work experience

At Southampton, you will have many opportunities to take up paid placements with leading companies.

We will also help you with the steps towards applying for internships and work experience. Within the last year, students have been offered placements with Eaton, Zurich, Ageas and Southampton International Airport and many more.

Placement opportunities provided by our exclusive Excel Southampton Placement Programme include a range of subjects and career areas, and can range from 4 to 12 weeks.

The Excel Southampton Placement Programme will provide 400 students and recent graduates exclusively from the University of Southampton with a placement during 2014/15

Find out more about finding internship and placement opportunities.


Student Enterprise

We offer many chances to get involved with enterprise. You’ll develop creative, innovative and leadership skills which will help you on the path to success.

Whether you're interested in building your own business, or focusing on social enterprise and developing a business to tackle social problems worldwide, we have everything you need.

Examples of opportunities and societies you can join include:

Career Destinations run a number of workshops, events and opportunities for students of all years and subjects interested in Enterprise. Whether you want to develop your Enterprise skills or craft your own business, Student Enterprise will help and support you.

Enactus Southampton – Enactus is a global community which combines the talents and ideas of students, academics and business leaders to create projects and business opportunities for communities worldwide. Enactus Southampton have won the National Competition three times since 2011, and came second in the World Cup Final in Cancun in 2013.

Fish on Toast - Fish on Toast is an Entrepreneurs Society at Southampton who run regular sessions to inspire students, including interactive workshops and talks from successful entrepreneurs. Visit their Facebook page for more information.

• Global Entrepreneurship Week – This worldwide event is recognised on campus with a number of activities and competitions. Visit their website to find out more.

Take Off- The University of Southampton Entrepreneurship Competition is open to all students and has a fantastic line-up of speaker events that will all help you formulate and pitch your business ideas for a share of £50,000.

Discover more about getting involved with Student Enterprise.


Taking a year out

From working for a year in industry, to studying abroad, the benefits from taking a year out can be a valuable asset to your CV.

Year In Industry is a registered charity that works with hundreds of companies to help students in their gap year before starting university and during their placement year while they are studying.

You can benefit from competitive salaries, sponsorship and free training courses. Our Year in Industry office can be found in Building 16, Room 1037, University Crescent on Highfield Campus. You can contact the team by calling +44 (0)23 80 8059 2430, or by email.

Visit the Year in Industry website.

We are connected to a large number of Socrates-Erasmus Universities across Europe, providing you with the opportunity to study abroad.

Find out more about our Erasmus+ scheme.