Handshake: How to discover career events

Posted on: 27 October 2021 by Annabelle Usher (Final year Geography student, and Career Coach) in Hints, tips and advice

I’m Annabelle and I’m a final year Geography student, I also work part-time as a Careers Coach in the Careers Studio. I enjoy being a Career Coach because I get to interact with a variety of different people and helping students explore their careers options.

Handshake is the careers portal at university, it’s essentially the online hub for anything careers-related. In Handshake, you can apply, connect and explore. Handshake has a wealth of resources to help you on your careers journey from a CV Checklist to tips on how to optimise your use of LinkedIn.

There are resources for you to use whichever stage you are at with your career journey. Handshake also gives you the ability to search for jobs and follow employers of interest so you can keep up to date with any new job offers they have or any events that you may be able to attend. You can also use the messaging feature to speak to fellow students and alumni about anything careers related. This may be asking alumni about application processes for graduate schemes or speaking to a fellow student about how they obtained a year in the industry.

You can benefit from using it in so many ways! One of the main benefits for me is using Handshake to discover career events that are going on. Whether these are virtual or in-person these are so important in helping you progress with your career ideas. They are also useful in growing your network with employers which is more beneficial than you can probably imagine.

As a student it is so easy to access handshake. No need to set up an account or try and remember a new password! You just use your MWS username and password to login and then you can set up your profile. You can access Handshake through your student intranet so it’s only a few clicks away!

On your profile you can really tailor it to your job and industry interests. This is so beneficial for you as employers are more likely to contact you with opportunities. You can set your job hunt preference, so employers know whether you are actively looking for a job. You can also filter the type of work you’re looking for. You are able to filter which cities you would like to work in so whether you want to stay close to home or go far afield the opportunities for you can be matched. Finding the right role for you is also important so using this filter is key to finding the job of best fit. Finally, you can add industries that you’re interested in whether you know exactly which industry or you’re thinking about a range of industries then this is all available.

Setting up your profile is super easy and ensuring you have a completed profile will make it more likely for employers to contact you. You need a picture and a headline - this is called ‘My Journey’ on Handshake, this gives you the opportunity to describe yourself in a few short sentences.

Then there is the work experience section. You need to fill this section with any experience you have whether this was a part time job or internship, paid or voluntary all experience is valid. Then you need to think about any extracurricular commitments you have or take part in. Finally, potentially the most important section for employers when looking at your profile will be the skills and documents section. This section allows you to highlight your skills and add your CV and Cover Letter to your profile so the employer can take a look.

As a student, my favorite thing about Handshake is the ability to look through different events that are happening with employers. Attending these always gives good insights into specific sectors, roles, and companies which I can then take forward when considering my own career options. As a geography student using these is helpful to filter through all the options we have when thinking about careers because the degree is so broad.

Going forward as I start applying for jobs, I am going to be using the resources in the careers centre to ensure my applications will have the competitive edge. When you utilise Handshake you will really see the benefit.