Sussex wins national award for ‘Student Connectors’ programme
By: Tom Walters
Last updated: Thursday, 15 July 2021
The University found out recently that it has been awarded a Supporting Student and Graduate Employability award for its Student Connectors project.
The winner was announced at the AGCAS (The Association of Graduate Careers Advisory Services) Awards for Excellence showcase webinar on 25 June 2021.
The award was presented to an AGCAS member service who displayed effective development and implementation of an initiative, with the ultimate aim of improving the student/graduate outcomes and learning gain.
This year, the University’s Placements Team employed 14 students, each of whom had recently returned from placement.
These ‘Student Connectors’ worked with the University for the entire academic year, creating high-quality, high-impact and stable student jobs.
Connectors were embedded into both Careers and academic departments to provide dedicated and subject-specific help directly to students who needed it.
The University gave their Student Connectors a single aim – to help second-year placement searchers in their department. Connectors could then design a programme of support for students in their departments, with full support from and in collaboration with the staff team and subject tutors.
One Sussex Placement Connector, Huyen Le, who studied Chemistry and and undertook a placement last year, presented at the awards, together with Placements Manager, Claire Colburn.
The University’s Head of Careers and Entrepreneurship, Emily Huns, said:
“We’re so excited that the work of our amazing Placement Connector team has been recognised through this award! Our Connectors have been instrumental in achieving a rise in the number of Sussex students securing a placement this year, despite current job market challenges. More generally, the Student Connector initiative is making a massive impact at Sussex. Over 150 Connectors are now working across the University where they co-design and co-deliver services to students in a range of support areas.”
Of the winner, the AGCAS Final Judging Panel said:
“The impact of this outstanding project is strong, with impressive evidence of student voice. The project’s goals are clearly aligned with what is important to students. Placements can be quite anxiety provoking for students, and student connectors are a brilliant idea.”