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The Student Consultancy | The Careers Service The Student Consultancy – Oxford University Careers Service
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What is The Student Consultancy?

APPLICATIONS FOR TRINITY TERM 2019 HAVE NOW OPENED. Click here to apply.

An innovative and unique programme, The Student Consultancy equips students with key and demonstrable consulting and teamwork skills to help local businesses, charities and community organisations. Since its launch, nearly 2,000 students have taken part in the programme, helping over 250 clients.

Students work in small teams over a term to address a strategic issue or business problem for a client organisation in Oxfordshire. Whatever your career plans you can benefit from the programme.

The Student Consultancy will provide you with an opportunity to:

  • Learn assessment centre skills, regardless of the sector you wish to work
  • Contribute to the local community and gain solid work experience
  • Tackle strategic business issues and concerns
  • Develop key employability skills such as self-management, team working, business and customer awareness, problem solving and communication
  • Provide demonstrable examples of keys skills for your CV or for use in job interviews
  • Gain an awareness of the commercial, social and behavioural contexts of professional environments
How does it work?

After you have been selected to take part after the assessment centre, you will receive intense training sessions during 1st Week to prepare you for your projects. These will cover an introduction to consulting, key business issues, and how to go about solving them, market research, interviewing techniques, making recommendations and reports.

We will divide students into teams who will each be assigned a client organisation, based on your project preferences where possible, and you’ll then arrange meetings with the client to discuss their project. After this you will spend seven to eight weeks working with your clients, producing a report for the client about your findings. Although you will be liaising direct with your client, the Careers Service will be there to support you with any questions that you may have.

The programme is open to students from any discipline, and selection is based on:

  • creativity in finding solutions
  • approach to business situations and commercial awareness
  • motivation to support the local community
  • community or volunteer experience
  • teamwork and communication skills

Past projects

Past projects involved marketing and promotion ideas, website design, audience analysis and evaluating fundraising initiatives. Clients have come from all areas, including museums and heritage, community projects, retail, IT, start-ups, local theatre, local government, local and international charities, art galleries and many more.

What past students have said

Using TSC in job applications

‘I interviewed for BCG, McKinsey, Bain and Oliver Wyman, and used examples from The Student Consultancy at all of them. (I received offers from all four)’

‘I often write about it in job applications, using the programme to highlight examples of working in a mixed discipline team, consultancy, management, knowledge of business, entrepreneurial spirit and so on.’

‘Valuable CV and application material – it’s a really worthwhile project and is a commendable achievement. It really taught me how to think in a different way and communicate effectively with all sorts of people.’

 ‘The Student Consultancy was an excellent example/experience to cite when describing community involvement and group work experience.’

‘Valuable experience in communication management (effective communication) and team organisation / team work! Very helpful experience to talk about in consecutive job interviews!’

‘It’s a very good example to talk about in relation to taking ownership of a project that provides real added value to a business. I brought it up when asked about team work and problem solving.’

Gaining skills and experience

‘The Student Consultancy programme gave me not only an interesting insight into the consultancy sector, but also a comprehensive idea of the intricacies and difficulties of the working world more generally.’

‘I learnt key skills on how to lead meetings, and also ways in which to work as a group.’

‘The Student Consultancy helped me realise how much I did not know about consulting, team work, and project management, particularly about the challenges and difficulties involved. This is valuable insight that will help me in other projects’

‘An appreciation for how a bright spark by a few students can be amplified and transformed to create significant social change in the community.’

‘It was very interesting to work on a project that was not related to my degree subject (thinking outside the box) and I learned a lot from the organisation we worked with.’

‘The programme gave me insight into previously unknown skills: including managing the balance of a diverse group of characters, and that good communication, clear goals and deadlines are key. It also taught me some valuable business vocabulary, and how to present myself in a way that is  more understandable within the industry.’

‘The Student Consultancy gave me an idea of what it would be like to work in strategic consulting, and I came to the conclusion that it would be interesting, dynamic and more satisfying than I ever expected.’

‘Real business experience which was completely unique. A chance to step out of the academic world.’

‘Commercial awareness, and an experience of the kind of job I could be doing in the future.’ 

How to apply

Trinity Term 2019

APPLICATIONS FOR TRINITY TERM 2019 HAVE NOW OPENED. Click here to apply.

In order to take part in Trinity 2019, you must be available at the following times:

Assessment centres: 25 OR 26 April. One hour session. There will be eight sessions to choose from (9:00, 10:00, 11:00 or 12:00).

Training days: 1 AND 2 May – One 2.5 hr session per day. You must attend both days. There will be three sessions per day to choose from (9:30, 12:30, 15:30).

We are unable to offer further assessment centres or training days, and you must attend these sessions in order to continue on the programme throughout term.

Keep up to date

If you have any queries regarding the programme, please email tsc@careers.ox.ac.uk

Mentions around the web
  • Cherwell – an article on TSC’s work with Community Action Groups
  • Oxford Mail – Careers Service director Jonathan Black provides an insight into the programme
  • OU Management Society – a first hand perspective from a student
  • NCUB – a report on The Student Consultancy’s collaboration with Centrica
  • Healthwatch Oxfordshire – an article on a student team’s final report for TSC
  • Live Music Exchange – students’ final report on another project
This information was last updated on 12 February 2019.
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Recent blogs about The Student Consultancy

Win £100 with the Internship Office Photo Competition!

Blogged by Internship Office on 18/07/2019.

The Oxford University Internship Office Photo Competition is taking place once again in 2019! We are inviting all students who take part in internships facilitated through the Internship Office to submit photos that best represent your internship experience.

Please submit entries for the following categories:

Through an intern’s eyes…

What does your internship look like? Are there images you are seeing each day that would represent your experience in a positive way? Perhaps a snap of your colleagues, your workstation, field trips, events or meetings, appealing views on your way to work, even interesting objects which you associate with your internship. You can be as creative as you like!

You on your internship

We want to see photos of you in your internship environment. This could be a selfie, or you could task someone else to take a picture of you in action on your internship. This could be a posed shot, a journey, an event, meeting or you in your everyday routine on your internship.

Rules and tips

  • To enter the competition, please send your photos by email to internships@careers.ox.ac.uk with the items as file attachments, or using a file transfer service such as WeTransfer or Dropbox. Please state clearly which categories you would like to enter.
  • You may enter five photos for each category (a maximum of 10 photos in total).
  • The winning entries will be decided by a selection panel at the Careers Service.
  • For information on copyright and usage permission, please see the terms and conditions.
  • There will be one prize winner per category, who will each be awarded a high street voucher worth £100.
  • We are looking for photographs that communicate your internship experience in an interesting way. Creativity and imagination will be rewarded!
  • The closing date for this competition is 17:00, Monday 16 September 2019.

And finally, if you need some inspiration, have a look at some of our favourite entries from previous competitions:

2015 Slideshow

2016 Slideshow

2017 Slideshow

Researcher Strategy Consultancy Michaelmas 2019 – Apply Now!

Blogged by Fiona Sinclair on 18/07/2019.

Applications for the Researcher Strategy Consultancy programme are now open

The purpose of the Researcher Strategy Consultancy programme is to provide early career researchers (DPhil students, RAs, and postdocs) with an opportunity to develop the core employability skills required for a transition into analytical, business, or policy roles in the sector.

Particular emphasis is given to business awareness, teamwork, communication and leadership to complement other postgraduate training. This programme enables participants to build on skills that typically develop in designing, planning and conducting complex research projects. Whatever their career plans, including further research and academia, participants can benefit significantly from the programme.

Participants volunteer some of their own time to work in teams, over a 3 month period, to address a strategic issue or business opportunity for a client organisation.

Apply now

Click here to apply. The closing date is Monday 9 September (noon).

We are particularly interested in attracting applicants from across the University to form cross-disciplinary teams to work on our client challenges.

For further information, and for mandatory assessment and training dates, please visit the Researcher Strategy Consultancy webpage. If you have any queries regarding the programme, please email courses@careers.ox.ac.uk.

The Careers Service at the University of Oxford Open Days

Blogged by Corina Lacurezeanu on 25/06/2019.

Are you planning to attend the University of Oxford Open Days on 3 and 4 July?

The University of Oxford Careers Service will be participating in this year’s #oxopendays. Whether you have no idea what to do after graduation, are beginning to have some ideas, or know exactly what you want to do once you’ve finished university, we at the Careers Service are here to help guide and support you to achieve your career ambitions in whatever type of job that is.

Come and learn more about how we work with and support students at:

    • The Open Day Information Centre, Examination Schools, 75-81 High St, OX1 4BG, 09:00–17:00.
    • The Careers Service, University of Oxford, 56 Banbury Road, OX2 6PA, 9:00–16:00.

 

Find out more about the University of Oxford Open Days here >>

Careers Advice During the Vacation

Blogged by Karan Karasinska on 24/06/2019.

The Careers Service will remain open throughout the summer vacation and you can come in to have a 1:1 discussion with a Careers Adviser as normal; our advice appointments are available to book on CareerConnect. However, if you are not in Oxford during the vacation, you can still get careers advice.

Short Discussion

If you would like to have a discussion by telephone or Skype while you are out of Oxford, you can book a Short Discussion appointment and email us to say you would like the appointment to be over the telephone, or via Skype.

E-guidance

The Careers Service also offers e-guidance during the vacation period. If you have a careers advice question, you can mail it to guidance@careers.ox.ac.uk. A Careers Adviser will normally reply to your email within two working days. We will run this service from Monday 1 July until Wednesday 2 October (but please note that outside of this period the service is not offered and emails will not be monitored).

If you require any further clarification of our services, or have a specific enquiry, then please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us: reception@careers.ox.ac.uk or telephone 01865 274646.

Insight into Academia: Positioning for Academic Progression

Blogged by Rebecca Ehata on 13/06/2019.

When: Tuesday 18 June, 13:00-14:00
Where: The Careers Service
Book your place >>

A career in academia can be very rewarding, but how do you go about establishing yourself as an academic in such a competitive job market?

Our two seminar speakers will share their experiences of getting the first academic job and give insights on what it takes – besides a PhD and a developing list of publications – to succeed. There will be an opportunity to ask your own questions. Feel free to bring your lunch with you.

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