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As a not-for-profit organisation we rely on students and volunteers to deliver quality services. Those who are really keen to learn and gain as much experience from the placement, gain transferrable skills and knowledge valued by future employers.

How has the student’s role added value and benefit to your organisation?

The students were really keen to involve themselves in all of the projects and gain a wide range of experience. They were happy to contribute ideas and liaise with staff members and partners. All of the students conduct themselves professionally whilst representing the organisation, their contributions and help have been invaluable.

Can you offer advice to other organisations considering hosting second year undergraduates on work placement?

Given the opportunity to host a 2nd year undergraduate placement I would advise other organisations to seize the opportunity. Students bring new skills and creative ideas to a workforce and help to develop staff members existing skills and mentoring experience. In addition to this they become a valued part of the team for their period of Work Based Learning and contribute significantly to seamless delivery of projects and services.

What would you say are the most important skills and qualities you look for in a prospective employee?

One of the main skills we look for in a prospective employee is the ability to communicate effectively. A lot of our sessions rely on staff members and students to communicate between different organisations and have the ability to deliver health-related messages in a clear and concise manner. In addition to this we also look for employees that have a professional demeanour and those who are polite, friendly, proactive, considerate and passionate about public health.

Do you think it is important for students to undergo Work Based Learning during their studies?

In my opinion it is of upmost importance for students to experience Work Based Learning during their degree. It is not only an opportunity to trial a future career but also to apply their learning to work based situations. It is also an opportunity for the students to develop themselves professionally and reflect on their experiences.