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Employing a Placement Year Student from Durham University

Durham University has invested in the recruitment of Faculty Placement Managers to embed the option and grow the number of students going out on Placement Years as part of their degree programmes. This forms part of Durham University's 2017-2027 strategic aims to increase the number of students working or studying abroad (25%+) and for the vast majority (75%+) of undergraduate students to have completed some form of work experience before they graduate.

In an increasingly competitive graduate job market, employers are eager to see that students have not only achieved a great degree from a renowned university, but have also developed a wide range of skills, which will be beneficial in the workplace.

We are proud to be one of the top universities targeted by employers who provide a variety of placement roles but we are especially keen to develop a programme of exclusive opportunities for our students. This will allow us to not only provide vacancies to our students with less competition but also provide work experience in industries that do not traditionally provide such opportunities including charities, creative, cultural and heritage organisations.

Benefits of employing a Placement Year student?

  • Bring fresh ideas to your organisation or you may have a project which requires extra capacity
  • Students develop a range of specialist skills during their degree, which may fill a skills gap in your organisation
  • Nearly all students at Undergraduate level undertake research methods and modules developing a range of digital skills, and experience in research analysis, fieldwork and laboratory work depending on the discipline
  • Future talent identification - recruiting a placement student allows you to identify candidates early and see if they are a good “fit” for your organisation 

Can you offer a Placement Year to a Durham student?

We're asking our alumni and supporter community if they can help us provide placement roles and work experience to current students. In an increasingly competitive graduate job market, employers are eager to see that students have not only achieved a great degree from a renowned university but have also developed a wide range of skills, which will be beneficial in the workplace. If you could offer a Placement Year to a Durham student, please contact us using the email address at the bottom of this page.


University student
"Hiring a placement student from Durham has been fantastic. The Durham Careers and Placements team are always so friendly and supportive too. We’ll definitely be working with them in the future."

RMP Enterprise
Placement provider

What makes a suitable Placement?

  • Fixed period of work within an organisation lasting 40 weeks+ (we may be able to consider shorter opportunities if you would like to offer an alternative option)
  • Undertaken as a recognised part of a student’s degree, usually between their 2nd and 3rd year (in some Science courses students will do placements between their 3rd and 4th year)
  • A role that allows candidates to operate at a professional level, develop existing skills and learn new competencies
  • An opportunity to manage a project or initiative during their time with you
  • Students need to have suitable support, training and line management in place
  • They need a safe environment to work in and we don’t encourage working from home full time
  • Placements should be paid, ideally between £16-£22k per annum dependent upon the sector (in order to attract some of our students you may want to offer higher)
University student
“Our Durham placement student was well prepared for a business environment on joining us and as a result very quickly became part of the team and was able to add value through her energy and desire to achieve results. By the end of her placement she was leading some substantial projects and was a well-respected member of the team.”

Placement provider

Working with Durham University

  • Nearly all academic departments offer the opportunity for students to undertake a Placement Year as part of their degree meaning that students have wide breadth of knowledge, skills and experience to bring to your organisation
  • Each Faculty has a dedicated Placement Manager who can support you with creating and highlighting relevant opportunities to students
  • Have an idea for an event? We can collaborate with you to run your event virtually or perhaps on campus
  • Free vacancy advertising via our online portal, weekly Placement Year newsletter to students and social media
  • For exclusive opportunities to Durham University students we can also help with the recruitment admin including collating applications and arranging virtual or on campus interviews with your shortlisted students
University student
“The Durham placement team have always been extremely helpful in ensuring we attract the most appropriate candidates, both in terms of what we and the placement students are looking for out of the program. This has ensured good fits and a beneficial program for all parties involved.”

Opus Corporate Finance Limited
Placement provider
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For more information or if you have any questions, please contact any of our Faculty Placement Managers at: