RISE Live: WGS Online Careers Sessions

We have a wonderful tradition of being able to call on the experiences of our alumnae to support students to consider the many and varied career opportunities available to them. With the arrival of COVID-19 and the changes it brought, we have needed to find new ways to do this.

Working closely with the Head of Careers, Mrs Cottam, we offered a series of online careers talks to support our current students and recent alumnae as they think about their next steps. We spoke to alumnae about their career paths and the fact that this may not always be directly related to the subject that they studied at university. We discussed how the skills that they developed have transferred into different areas and the premise that, having completed a degree, there were many different career journeys possible.

These sessions also gave us the chance to invite alumnae to take part who would not, under normal circumstances, be able to visit Withington in person. It also meant that we could extend the invitation to join the sessions to our most recent alumnae, still at university or just graduated, who may find them beneficial, especially during this time.

We are extremely grateful to the following alumnae who supported the programme:

Humanities Degrees: From History to the Economics
of CoronavirusLizzy Burden (Class of 2012) 
Economics Reporter, The Telegraph
Language Degrees: to Finance, Electoral Reform and Beyond

Natalie Bodek (Class of 2002)
Acting Deputy Director, Elections Division
at the Cabinet Office

Science Outside the Lab

Inga Deakin (Class of 2001) 
Entrepreneur in Residence/Mentor in Residence at Duke University, North Carolina, USA

Language Degrees: Sport to the Charitable Sector

Michelle Goulty (Class of 2005) 
Head of Foundation Partnerships at City Football Group

Science Degrees and Beyond:
From Natural Science to InvestmentsSabina Puri (Class of 2005) 
Vice President, Blackstone, New York

Mrs Cottam, Head of Careers, said,

“It was a real pleasure to host these inspirational women.  It demonstrates that following your genuine academic interests, and allowing them to inform your career decisions, ultimately leads to jobs that provide huge fulfilment, challenge, enjoyment and excitement.  Our alumnae spoke about how to make the most of opportunities and your network, how change and challenge should be welcomed rather than feared, how sometimes the most surprising directions can be the most rewarding, and how it is ultimately your skills, and not the name of your degree or university, that set you up for a worthwhile and satisfying working life.

We’re delighted that this online format has allowed us to connect with our wider network of alumnae and would welcome future involvement from any alumna who feels this is a programme with which they would like to engage.”

The feedback from students and alumnae regarding these sessions has been overwhelmingly positive and we are currently looking at ways to take this programme forward.


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