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The Springboard Programme (for Women) | The Careers Service The Springboard Programme (for Women) – Oxford University Careers Service
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About Springboard

Based on the award-winning Springboard Programme for professional women – including those who identify as women – the course aims to ensure female students are equipped for their career after graduation, and provide them with tools to enhance their personal development in all aspects of life.

The Careers Service is grateful for the support of Citi, L.E.K. Consulting and Shell in delivering Springboard.


What is Springboard?

The Springboard Programme enables women to take more control over their own lives by helping participants identify the clear, practical and realistic steps that they want to take and develop the skills and confidence to take them. Evidence suggests that women are less likely than men to take this structured approach. The format is tried and tested and has an impeccable track record in an extraordinarily wide range of situations. The ingredients are:

  • Three one-day consecutive workshops + a one-day stand alone workshop
  • A personal workbook
  • Inspirational female guest speakers
  • An opportunity to build a development community

Topics covered

  • Self-assessment – understanding your personal values, skills, interests and relationships
  • Getting support for you
  • Dealing with change, dealing with feelings, dealing with stress
  • Assertiveness
  • Goal setting
  • Listening and making an impact
  • Putting yourself across positively
  • Planning your future with confidence and flexibility

How will you benefit?

The Springboard programme will encourage:

  • A positive attitude based on openness to experience and the ability to learn from it
  • Taking initiative when making decisions in lives, careers and academic work
  • Planning activities using goal-setting based on personal values
  • Improving confidence and assertiveness as women
  • Self-assessing your own resources, qualities and skills, and how to represent yourself positively
  • Promoting the formation of networks for support, encouragement and fun
  • Having access to sponsoring organisations including opportunities to network and seek mentors
Past participants' opinions

“I feel like my outlook on life has been lifted onto a completely different level. Whenever I think back to the programme when I face difficulties, I feel more able to approach the difficulties and remember how positive I felt in the three days, and that how I felt about my life was under my control.”  – Participant, Hilary Term 2017

“The holistic approach allows you to grow and have the tools and confidence to improve in all aspects of life, and because it’s not just about studying or careers I will carry these skills with me for years to come” – Participant, Hilary Term 2016

Springboard has had a sizeable impact on me since I completed it in 2016. I think back to many of the programme’s key messages and to the insights I had during the workshops on a weekly, if not daily, basis. I also walked away with a community of amazing Oxford women who have grown to be an important long-term support network of friends and inspiring young professionals“. – Participant, MT 2016

“Springboard helped me in seeing the challenges I face as opportunities rather than problems”  – Participant, Hilary Term 2016

“It is not an exaggeration to say that Springboard is life changing! I left the course feeling so different – I am now more positive and focused, and feel more able to seek help from those around me”  – Participant, Hilary Term 2016

Videos about the programme

What could Springboard mean to you?

Hear from past students about what Springboard meant to them!

Why apply to the programme?

Hear from past students why you should apply now…

Why other women applied

… and why they applied!

What did you get out of the programme?

In this video, students let us know what effect Springboard had on them.

Ready to apply?

Hear some advice on whether or not to apply!

How to take part


There are 3 consecutive full days training, plus a follow-up workshop, held in the Careers Service. The programme runs once a year, Monday – Wednesday of 9th week in  Hilary Term. In addition, there’s a workshop in Wednesday of 0th week the following term. We will have a welcoming reception prior to the programme launch. You MUST be able to attend ALL 4 days of training.


Thanks to generous sponsorship and support, the course is free to participants. As places are limited to 50, we do ask for a £50 deposit returnable on completion of the course. Please note the deposit will only be returned after attendance at the fourth workshop and completion of the course evaluation at the end of the programme.


Who should apply?

The programme is open to all female students (including  students who identify as female), in all subject areas at Oxford University.

How to apply

Applications are made through CareerConnect from early in Hilary term. Applicants will need to submit a CV and a 300 word supporting statement detailing why they wish to participate in the programme.

Any questions?

For further information or any queries please contact The Springboard Team on

Programme for female staff and researchers

The Springboard Programme for undergraduates and masters students is an adaptation of a national programme for professionals, which is run elsewhere in Oxford. All female Oxford University staff can take part in the Learning Institute’s Springboard Programme for staff.

Female DPhil students and post-doctoral researchers in any division can take part in the Springboard Programme for Researchers, run by the MPLS division.

Our sponsors

We’re grateful for the support of Citi, L.E.K. and Shell in delivering the Springboard programme.

At Citi, we’ve shaped the financial industry for over 200 years. By harnessing the power of our people – we’ll continue to move forward. Our associates’ and analysts’ unique perspectives help drive solutions to the most challenging problems and benefit the lives of so many people.

Citi offers full-time, placement and internship opportunities across a number of its business areas, including Investment Banking, Corporate Banking, Capital Markets Origination, Markets and Securities Services, Treasury and Trade Solutions (TTS), Private Bank, Risk Management, Operations and Technology. Citi also offers a week spring insight programme enabling students due to graduate in 2020 the opportunity experience first-hand the Citi culture and environment. University students interested in this industry with drive, commitment and a passion for learning are encouraged to apply. This is the opportunity to be part of an exciting period in the development of the global financial services industry, working with the brightest minds to drive responsible, positive change within Citi and beyond.


L.E.K. Consulting is a global strategy consulting firm that uses deep industry expertise and rigorous analysis to help business leaders achieve practical results with real impact. We are uncompromising in our approach to helping our clients to consistently make better strategic decisions, deliver improved business performance and create greater shareholder value.

The firm advises and supports global companies that are leaders in their industries – including the largest private and public sector organizations, private equity firms and emerging entrepreneurial businesses. We specialise in addressing key strategic and operational issues and in providing Mergers & Acquisitions (M&A) support. We are experts across a wide range of sectors, including life sciences and healthcare, retail and consumer, financial services, industrials, energy and transportation.

Founded in London in 1983, L.E.K. employs more than 1,000 professionals across Europe, the Americas and Asia Pacific.

L.E.K is committed to fostering a diverse and inclusive workplace in which men and women of all ages, races, ethnicities, religions and sexual orientations are respected and valued. Our workforce is diverse, representing a range of professional and personal backgrounds and more than 30 nationalities. We are dedicated to providing a workplace that enables all employees to fulfil their potential. The diversity among L.E.K. employees makes L.E.K. a better place to work and allows L.E.K. to meet the needs of our clients and the highest level.


At Shell, we’re developing all kinds of ideas to help meet the growing demand for energy and we’re looking for ambitious students and graduates to help us do more. Shell is a global group of energy and petrochemical companies, employing approximately 87,000 people and operating in more than 70 countries and territories.

We support diversity programmes both internally and externally and we proud to be associated with the Springboard programme at Oxford. The embedding of diversity and inclusion in our business plans will help ensure we reach our goal of becoming the most competitive and innovative energy company. We cannot achieve this without a diverse workforce that reflects the diversity of our partners, customers and the countries in which we operate. A diverse population in Shell contributes different ways of thinking, and through that provides the innovation we need to ensure our portfolio is both attractive and resilient.

This information was last updated on 24 January 2018.
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