Activities Aimed at Increasing Student Employability
With the goal of helping students develop important practical competencies that will enhance their employability and contribute to their professional success, Wittenborg Amsterdam organised the Work Experience Preparation Module in September during Block 1. Consisting of four weekly sessions, the module was attended by 14 bachelor’s and master’s students, who participated in activities focused on topics such as career design, how to improve CVs and cover letters and how to build a strong LinkedIn profile.
According to Support Office & External Relations Coordinator Xiaoli Wu, who was responsible for organising the module, the sessions will also be conducted at the start of Block 5 – in early 2023 – to a new group of students. Wu added that, out of the module’s four sessions, three were conducted by the school’s lecturers while one was delivered by a guest lecturer.
“In each block, at least one career development event is conducted by guest lecturers like recruiters, career coaches and entrepreneurs. The last activity featured Wittenborg alumnus Mehdi Jangjou, who is currently working as a Senior Technology Project Manager at Wolters Kluwer. In Mehdi’s session, he talked about job hunting and interviews, sharing his experience and giving tips to students,” she said.
Ajva Waseem, a Pakistani student who is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Entrepreneurial Business Administration, pointed out the module does not only help students eventually find jobs, but also gives them the opportunity to identify their abilities and plan their professional future. “In my opinion, the most crucial aspect of these sessions is that they give you the tools to enhance your CV and cover letter. On top of that, by attending these activities, we get a better understanding of how to set goals that are both challenging and doable. Plus, we get the chance to explore possible career options further on.”
Iranian student Ali Talei, also studying for an EBA degree, described the module as “life-changing”, stressing that the skills developed through these activities increase the chances that students will get accepted into the companies they are applying for. “These sessions have taught me how to write a good CV and make it more appealing to employers. Moreover, I have become aware of the fundamental role of networking and social connections when it comes to finding a job, as well as how important first impressions and communication skills are.”
Over the last two years, 170 internships have been completed by Wittenborg’s bachelor’s and master’s students at approximately 150 companies. Most internships have been done in large Dutch cities, such as Amsterdam, Rotterdam and Eindhoven, and some of the companies that most frequently hire Wittenborg students are Merck Chemicals, Unilever, Philips and Yamaha.
The business school publishes information on vacancies advertised by multiple companies on the Wittenborg Connect platform, where students can also apply for jobs and internships. Moreover, Wittenborg Connect frequently promotes networking events and other activities aimed at helping students develop their hard and soft skills.
Support Office & External Relations Coordinator Sophia Faraji highlighted that, by doing internships, students have the chance to apply the knowledge acquired in the classroom to a professional context. “Internships are very important because they enable students to build up their network, become familiar with Dutch working environments, improve their CVs and ultimately start a permanent career. In addition to that, it is a way for students to know their abilities and passions.”
by Ulisses Sawczuk