Building industry experience
Making the most of industry related opportunities while you study helps you further develop the transferable skills such as communication, problem solving, and teamwork that employers value. These opportunities also give you the chance to begin building your professional networks and enhance your industry specific knowledge.
Work experience placements are generally unpaid, short term positions focused on boosting your industry knowledge and skills. These opportunities can lead to a place in a company’s vacation work or internship program. Many of these opportunities are not advertised, so you will need to be proactive in your search.
You can find out more about work experience opportunities by:
- reading Cold Canvassing [.pdf]
- reading Work Experience for Students [.pdf]
- taking the Stop Googling, Start Networking Careers Challenge
- checking UniHub for work experience opportunities
If you have found an unpaid work experience placement, you may not be covered by the organisation’s Personal Accident Insurance (PAI). Careers, Employment & Leadership provides free work experience insurance to eligible Curtin students for approved, co-curricular placements that comply with the Fair Work Act.
You can apply for Work Experience Insurance through UniHub.
Vacation work and internships are generally paid, degree related opportunities offered by larger organisations. These opportunities are more common in some industries and professions, such as engineering and commerce, than others.
Usually taking place during semester breaks, these opportunities are generally aimed at penultimate and final year undergraduate students, though postgrads in their first year can usually also apply. You can expect to be supervised and assessed during this experience, as many employers use this opportunity to assess your suitability for a graduate program offer.
You can find out more about vacation work and internship opportunities by:
- reading Looking for Work [.pdf]
- completing the Showcasing Your Skills & Qualities Workbook [.pdf]
- taking the How do I get to know my industry? Careers Challenge
- checking UniHub for vacation work and internship opportunities