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The Lancaster Award rewards you for taking part in those extra-curricular activities outside your academic studies that supplement the excellent education you receive at Lancaster University. Developed in partnership with employers, the certificate rewards you for making the most of your time at Lancaster, and enhances your future job prospects by encouraging you to acquire new skills valued by employers. You will undertake a variety of activities and reflect on the skills you have developed.
The Lancaster Award
Come along to a Lancaster Award Introductory session - available to book via TARGETconnect
At this session you will learn all about what you need to do to achieve the award, and have the chance to ask any questions.
Once you have attended one of the introductory workshops, you can register through the student portal.
You are very welcome to come along to a drop-in and receive feedback on one of your written skills. For fairness and parity with other students we cannot tell you what to write but can provide you with feedback.
Submit your completed skills bank (activities checklist) and information via your Moodle on the student portal.
There are three different levels of Lancaster Award; it is up to you which level you aim for.
To achieve the Award you will need to source and complete activities to build up points towards the level of Award you are aiming for. The Careers team can suggest where you can find activities that can count towards the Lancaster Award.
Upon completion of the activities, you will then need to complete assessments based on the typical application process for graduate jobs.
With so much competition in the graduate job market it is important you can demonstrate to employers that you have gained some form or work experience.
Any form of work experience will count towards the Award, including full and part-time work.
Plus, there are other work experience opportunities to consider, such as summer vacation work overseas.
Previous Award participants have undertaken include:
If you have any questions about work experience, please contact Careers staff and we can advise you of your options.
The wider your range of experiences and skills the more attractive you will be to potential employers.
There are fantastic opportunities to try out new sports and activities. Lancaster University Students' Union (LUSU) have over 170 affiliated societies so there should be something to appeal to everyone. Being an active member of a society or club will not only expand your friendship networks, and help you grow in confidence, but will also give you the opportunity to develop your transferable skills.
Aside from clubs and societies there are many other ways in which to become involved with campus life. You can become a tour guide, a mentor or a student representative. Also - why not engage with a mentor on LUMS Connect. Learn more about how this can benefit you.
The following is a list of activities previous Lancaster Award students have undertaken for the Campus Activity element:
You may already do valuable work within the community, whether here at Lancaster, at home or even globally.
If you’re unsure where to begin, speak to LUSU Involve who offer students the opportunity to get involved with valuable community projects. Lancaster Arts also advertise for volunteers to help support local art projects. You can also search for volunteering opportunities on TARGETconnect and by visiting our information page. Find out more about volunteering activities.
The following is a list of activities previous Lancaster Award students have undertaken for the Volunteering element:
There are many Career Development opportunities whilst you are at university. Careers run a wide range of workshops to help you understand key skills that employers look for in candidates. We also run workshops on CVs, application forms, interviews and assessment centres.
If you’re unsure which workshops can be used to count towards the Lancaster Award, please contact Careers staff who will be happy to advise. Learn more about eligible employability and career development activities.
Here are some examples of how you could build your points:
If you are undertaking Lancaster Award Bronze, you can choose to complete either a Skills Bank application form or an online video interview.
If you are applying for Lancaster Award Silver or Gold, you will be required to complete both the Skills Bank Application Form and the video interview.
These elements are the culmination of the Lancaster Award process. It is your opportunity to demonstrate how you have developed the skills required by recruiters both verbally and in written form.
You can find the Skills Bank template, video interview link and submission deadline on Moodle.
When we mark your submission you will be assessed on:
You will be given one opportunity to re-submit your Skills Bank if the first attempt does not meet our requirements.
When we mark your strengths-based submission you will be assessed on:
You will be given one opportunity to resubmit if the first attempt does not meet the required standard.
Only those of you who choose to go for Lancaster Award Gold need to submit a CV or LinkedIn profile.
You will find the CV submission portal on Moodle. If you are choosing to submit a LinkedIn profile instead there is section on the Skills Bank application form where you can enter your LinkedIn address.
The Excellence Award is a stand-alone award which rewards high achieving students who have invested time and energy into completing the Lancaster Award.
If selected, you will be asked submit a video interview to compete for a unique insight experience, provided by some of the top graduate recruiters in the UK.
Here are a few examples of the opportunities employers have offered in the past:
Spend time with soldiers and officers of the Adjutant General's Corps (AGC) which could include time with The Royal Military Police, Army Legal Services, Education and Training, Human Resources, and Finance specialists.
Take part in work experience to supplement your journalism portfolio with relevant cuttings after reporting on a range of news and entertainment articles. Receive mentoring from the Editor, David Keane.
Work experience in Leighton Moss, Silverdale, with wardens at the UK’s biggest conservation organisation, and potential to include a site visit with a regional ecologist or farmland adviser. Learn how the reserve benefits wildlife: practical habitat management, survey, and monitoring.
"The experience was beyond my expectations and I really enjoyed myself. I gained invaluble experience that I would never have even thought about, both in terms of the organisation and careers in general." - Laura, 2016
An opportunity to visit News UK in London, which houses The Times, The Sunday Times, Milkround, and more, and attend an Employability Training day to boost your career confidence.
Shadow a member of the senior leadership or executive team with Carlsberg in Northampton for the day.
Receive four one-hour mentoring session over a year from David Mackay, Divisional Managing Director of Santander UK retail banking operations in the North, covering career goals, management mentoring, teaching in senior executive retail banking.
Shadow the Frontline coaching and support team, have lunch with CEO Josh McAlister, and receive coaching with the Recruitment Director. Gain insight into social enterprise and social work sectors.
"The experience at Frontline was great, I had a very good time. We had some very good insights into what it means to work in Social Work, what the application process and expectations of Frontline are etc. We also had the chance to sit down with one of their office-based coordinators who gave us more insights into what the charity sector is like and some good advice on how to get experience etc." - Rachele, 2016
Spend a day or up to two weeks at the Dukes Theatre in Lancaster. The experience can be tailored to suit your interests as this is a diverse role but could include experience of event management both within the theatre and community settings/duty managing shows/customer care. Availability of experiences will depend on agreed date and time of the work experience.
The opportunity for a student interested in video production: a chance to understand how a small video production company operates. Gain knowledge of the whole video production process, with one day shadowing in the Manchester office, understanding the pre-production and / or post production process while also attending a one day shoot as an assistant or runner to gain more technical knowledge about filing and how a crew works during a day’s filming.
MondelÄ“z International pledges a flexible day of work experience. This could include shadowing a couple of major marketing projects, across a number of global brands like Cadbury, Oreo and Philadelphia, with also the chance talk to varying leaders across the business.
"By being awarded with Lancaster Excellence, I was given the opportunity to participate in a flexible day of work experience with MondelÄ“z International, with a keen emphasis on their marketing and global brands. Thus, I was guided through the inner workings of several of the company's major marketing projects, learned about the thinking and strategising that goes behind brand promotion, and even got the chance to talk to one of their most creative interns - who was involved in organising one of the best national marketing campaigns, which succeeded in revitalising an 100-year old brand. Needless to say, as an aspiring entrepreneur, gaining some degree of insight into this global powerhouse definitely was a boon... but I also had the privilege of meeting people of my age engaging with their work with a responsible attitude, trying to make a positive impact on people's lives, in their own way - very inspiring! " - Robert, 2016