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Careers, Employability and Enterprise Centre


Placements are short periods of professional experience that range for a few weeks to 12 months and usually take place during term-time, although some may take place during the Easter vacation. They may be part of your course and/or offer you academic credits towards your degree. Check your course handbook for details.

Course based opportunities may need to meet certain criteria so ask the placements co-ordinator in your School what these are. If your degree does not include a placement year you may still be able to do one by interrupting your studies. Discuss your request with your School as they may need to agree that your placement is suitable.

During a placement, you will be doing similar work to a normal employee of the organisation giving you a unique insight into your chosen profession or sector, the opportunity to acquire transferable skills and the sector and the opportunity to build a network of useful contacts.  Many graduate recruiters also use placement programmes as a method of recruitment so you could be fast tracked onto a graduate scheme if you are successful.

Types of opportunities available

We advertise a wide variety of placement opportunities in different sectors. Opportunities that we have advertised in the past include:

Set up in memory of a former Durham student Hannah Barrett, this placement gives a student the chance to work with VSO over the summer vacation conducting research and updating VSO's advocacy blog and social media. (Read more about the benefits of this placement in the case study below.)

Kleinwort Benson
Working with a private banker based at Kleinwort Benson an independently owned private bank and leading provider of wealth management solutions to private individuals and fund administration services to corporate clients. Students on placement will undertake research in order to source new clients and potential business deals.

For a full list of all opportunities currently available have a look at the vacancy database.


Employers offering placements

Organisations who have previously offered placement opportunities include:

  • Durham City Arts
  • Ernst & Young
  • Goldman Sachs
  • Citi
  • Mazaars
  • The Fells
  • Samsung
  • Marshall Gover
  • Turnstone Human Capital
  • Diabetes UK
  • John Lewis
  • Waterstons

Further information

The Placement Officer role is based in the Careers, Employability & Enterprise Centre and focuses on increasing the number and variety of placement opportunities available to Durham students. This involves working with academic members of staff, graduate recruiters and students to ensure the requirements for all groups are met. In particular, the role is looking to identify ways to increase the variety of placements available to Durham students, including virtual internships. For further information, please contact the Placement Officer on 0191 334 1406.