How to Find an Internship

You may be in your second or third year of university and looking at the job market. It may be daunting for new graduates, with reports that in 2013 there were 12 million graduates in the UK. However, many businesses hiring new grads take them through internship programmes. Internships give you experience in your chosen area and are a useful addition to your CV. They allow you to network with the influencers in your field, and they give you hands on experience. In addition to these advantages, you will also be financially compensated. Legislation now dictates that ‘workers’ must receive at least the minimum national wage. (International students whose home country is outside of the EU will need to check with their university if they are able to work on their visa.) Instead of working in food service or retail while you study, a paid internship gives you the chance to advance your career. Start your internship search by following the tips below.Student information blog internship jobs employment work experience

Use your university

Your tutors and careers service may know of companies which work with the university to offer internships. For example Queen Mary University has its own programme (QInterns), and the careers section of their website has lots of useful resources.

Utilise online internship searches

Several websites specialise in compiling internship information for students. Prospects has some good suggestions, and other useful information on internships. If you have dream company choices who aren’t actively offering internships, don’t be afraid to use a site such as LinkedIn to find hiring manager contact details. Talk to them to see if they would be interested in taking on an intern.

Consider your field

Some industries are much more likely than others to offer paid internships. Banking, IT, and government fields are likely to offer paid positions. Hard sciences also have a higher tendency to offer paid internships compared to arts programs.

Research your companies

Once you’ve found the paid internship of your dreams, make a great first impression. With the job market languishing, you will face a fair amount of competition for your internship opportunity. This is especially true if you are in a field that doesn’t have wide access to paid positions. Research the company, its goals, its products, and the company culture. You want to go into the interview with passion and energy. Show the company that you want to learn everything you can and that you already have the basics out of the way.

Say thank you

Once you complete the internship, stay in contact even if you don’t receive an immediate job offer. Send a thank you letter to all of your major points of contact within the company. You never know when a polite gesture may lead you into being considered for an opening in the future.

Make Your Uni Accommodation Your Own

Many students don’t want to change much in their flat aside from adding a collection of your favourite takeaway menus, however many students don’t feel at home until you really stamp your mark on your room. There are endless options open to you and so to help you on your way, we put together a few of our top tips.

1) The easiest way to inject life into a room is by adding colour. But before you rush off to get a pot of paint, remember that you are renting, so any changes will have to be temporary and may end up getting charged back to your deposit.

Room a homeA great way to get around this is by using accessories to inject colour and personality into a room. Different colours are said to invoke different feelings and moods, for example colour psychology suggests that blue has a calming effect, whereas yellow promotes confidence and positivity, both of which might come in handy when the exam period starts.

2) Photographs instantly bring a little piece of home into your room. It might be tempting to plaster your whole wall with pictures of nights out and holiday snaps; however, picking your favourites and displaying them in a photo frame will give more impact.

3) Your favourite band, film or even famous tennis player posters are another great way to brighten your room. You can get a real bargain at student poster sales which normally happen throughout the academic year.

4) Lighting can change the feel of any room. Adding a strong lamp will brighten a dark corner, or fairy lights can add a subtle glow. Make sure to stay away from candles, in the hustle and bustle of a student flat, it can be easy to forget they are still alight.

5) You may think your desk and chair are just a handy place to fling your clothes but keeping your workspace tidy and separate will help break up you room. It will also help you get into the studying mind set. If you want to customise your workspace, do this through your choice of stationery and study calendar.

Customising your room can easily be done on any budget. No matter what your style, putting your character into your room will bring you home comforts to help with the settling process.

 

Open Air Theatre and Regents Park: An Extraordinary Evening Out

Read Sandip’s glowing review of the Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre

Outdoor theatres are often forgotten in the midst of today’s technology obsessed society. Most of the big West End productions like The Lion King, 1984, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, and the short-lived I Can’t Sing, put great emphasis on extravagant set design, which you might think can’t be done in an outdoor theatre. However, upon visiting the opening night of Hobson’s Choice at the Open Air Theatre in Regents Park, I would argue that you really haven’t experienced real theatre until you’ve been to the Open AirTheatre, which is rustic, old-fashioned, traditional theatre at its storytelling best.Auditorium_at_Regent's_Park_Open_Air_Theatre

I know theatre isn’t everyone’s cup of tea; some may consider it a middle-class hobby, others just aren’t interested in what it has to offer. But outdoor theatre is an affordable evening out on any student budget. Based in Regents Park, the Open Air Theatre is one of the largest auditoriums in London with 1,250 seats and a remarkably intimate atmosphere.

Nearest to the Bakerloo station, set within Regents Park, head to the centre of the park past a numerous lush green spaces and impressive water features, including the impressive Boating Lake, until you reach the Jubilee Gates. Once you’re through the gates you find yourself in the mesmerising Queen Mary’s Garden at the centre of Regents Park.

On my visit I saw the thought-provoking 1960s drama Hobson’s Choice which runs until 12 July, to be followed by The Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess from 17 July – 23 August; and To Kill a Mockingbird from 28 August until 13 September. Although the Open Air Theatre is renowned for its marvellous atmosphere, mouth-watering barbecue, and delightful summer café, at its heart it presents remarkable stories, acted to the highest standards. For instance, in Hobson’s Choice, Mark Benton was a comedic marvel on stage, just as Jodie McNee was an extraordinarily determined talent.

The added bonus of the Open Air Theatre is that it’s based in one of London’s most exquisite parks. Regents Park, one of the Royal Parks of London, was originally used by Henry VIII as a hunting ground, and is now a stylish, beautiful landscape, perfect for evenings out with friends. Even if you don’t fancy theatre, be sure to visit Regents Park.

I thoroughly enjoyed my evening out at the Open Air Theatre’s production of Hobson’s Choice.

Click here for more information on the Open Air Theatre, or to find out more about the beauty of Regents Park, check out their website.

Check Out Our Chinese Site!

London is a desirable study destination, according to the UKCISA 2012-13 Annual Review over 100,000 students came from abroad to attend London universities. Our city is a popular choice as it hosts some of the world’s highest-ranked universities with award-winning facilities. The capital also has a rich artistic and cultural heritage, and is a global centre of business.

Scape Living China Weibo Chinese site student accommodation LondonMoving to a new place where the language and culture are totally different can be hard, however Scape Student Living are supporting international students and we are trying to make their journey to the UK as easy as possible. Our Chinese language website should go some way to help this; you can take a look at www.scapeliving.cn.

It’s always good to use a second language where you can, but if you’re moving abroad it’s comforting to know you can research this in your native language. The Chinese Scape Living website contains everything featured on the English-language version – information about the buildings, the student experience at Scape, room types, pricing, local area information and the people that make up the Scape team. Full of detail and images, it’s a great help in understanding where you could be living whilst studying in London.

Scape Living China Weibo Chinese site student accommodation London blog

We are very active on social media (check out our links on the right of every page), and now Chinese students can connect with us over Weibo too. Weibo is a Chinese social network which incorporates aspects of both Facebook and Twitter. Posts are 140 characters (around 70-80 words) so there is little more room for expression than on Twitter, but both are ‘microblogging’ sites. Scape’s Weibo feed will keep users updated on room types, interesting facts about London, cool places to visit, and images of the city before you even book your plane ticket! Appropriate articles from this blog have also been translated and these will feature on Weibo around every other week, so future Scape residents can read our advice on everything from saving money to revision tips.

Once you arrive Weibo can also provide news of events that are happening at Scape. We try and devise events to cater for everyone living with us; and these are a great way to meet new people which live in the building.

We want to help all students moving to London, whether they’ve made a long journey or live just up the road! If you want to travel light and bring only the essentials, we also provide room packs for bedding, cooking, cleaning or for your bathroom. If you purchase them before you arrive they will be in your room when you arrive.

Take a look at our Weibo feed and let us know what you think!

Make Money from Old Items

People may joke that student living is simple and easy, but when you have classes to attend, sports teams to practice for, and maybe even a part time job or some work experience, then it can be a lot to handle! If you work then you probably don’t have the time to increase your hours, and extra cash will always come in useful. There are some good websites for money saving tips, such as DailyProof, and we’ve also put together an article about how to make a little extra from what you’ve already got…

Upcycle

Why not try recycling old items into something new and useful? So that something you’ve had for ages gets a new use. If you need some accessories to brighten your day, some new things for your room, or present ideas, it can be a great way to save some money. Or you can sell on whatever you create. Pinterest always provides good suggestions for this sort of thing.

Trade things in

Take clothes to fashion exchange outlets, although they need to be in good condition and not too old. Websites like MusicMagpie, take clothes, and also CDs, DVDs and more. They will also give you an instant price online. If you’re prepared to wait a little longer then of course you can use eBay and Amazon, too.

Facebook

We don’t mean writing status after status begging people to buy your old shoes. There are Facebook Groups out there for most courses and students in the year below you would welcome the chance to buy second hand for the syllabus. Let’s face it, you hardly use half of them, and they cost a fortune. You might as well get some money back! Failing that, use notice boards around university to advertise what you’re selling.

Car boot sales

A little old school, sure, but car boot sales work. You don’t even need to have a car; you can just rent a table at lots of those in London. You’ll be amazed by how much other people will want what you’re trying to get rid of!

Swap shops

Trading clothes with friends is a great way to instantly get new clothes. Always loved your friend’s wardrobe, and know that they’re jealous of something you’ve over worn? Do a little swapping and you both look as good as new! You can even arrange this on a larger scale – Scape students can organise an event like this in one of the communal areas. You could charge everyone £3 to get in, and ask them to bring along three decent items of clothing they no longer want. They get tickets for their items, which they can then exchange for stuff they prefer. By donating the money to charity, you can get some new clothes and do a good deed!London student money tips upcycling

Student life is always going to be hard. At least when you graduate you can work full time and actually see a credit balance instead of your overdraft. But whilst you’re at uni, enjoy your time, and make the most of it – you’ll miss it when it’s gone!
This guest post was kindly provided by Maja Tisma from Daily Proof.

How to Spend the Summer in London

Our blogger Sandip tells us what is happening in London in June

Now that you have made it through the trials and tribulations of the exam season, you can begin to concentrate on how you are going to spend your summer at Scape. If the weather forecast is right, this June is going to be a scorcher. There is lots for you to do in London this June, and here are a few of my favourites.

Experience the culture of Rio in London

A celebration of all things Brazilian comes to Trafalgar Square on June 12; Brazil Day is a festival filled with dance lessons, live music, Brazilian street food, and DJs. The celebrations will bring the colours, fun and energy of the Rio Carnival to the capital. On the day of the World Cup’s opening match, you’ll be able to experience the sights, smells, and tastes of Rio in the heart of the capital.

A summer of sport on the big screen

Broadgate Summer of Sport will air some big sporting events on a huge screen for free in Exchange Square. If you don’t want to wait in the arduous queues at Wimbledon, if you weren’t flush enough to buy your ticket to Rio, and you just want to sit back and enjoy a summer of sport with your friends, then these events are for you. You’ll be able to watch the World Cup, Wimbledon, the Indian Cricket Tour of England and the Tour de France. You don’t need to be in the stadium to experience the emotion and atmosphere. Just be prepared, it’s going to get emotional.

Trooping the colour – the Queen’s birthday parade

things to do in London summer student

Although the Queen’s birthday is in April, this military celebration (dating back to the 18th century) is carried out on Horse Guards Parade by fully operational troops every year in June. If you want to catch a glimpse of British military might and tradition, then visit Whitehall on June 14 to experience what is always a great occasion.

The best thing about this parade is that it’s free; you can watch from Horse Guards Parade all the way down The Mall to Buckingham Palace. A spectacular flypast from the Red Arrows is also in store. If you do plan on going, arrive as early as possible; this is always a popular event.

Festival of Colours at the Queen Elizabeth Park

In 2014 the Queen Elizabeth Park hosts the annual Holi-inspired festival of colours. This is a feel good festival that is happening just 10 minutes from Scape East! There will be live DJs, bands, food and most importantly, plenty of coloured powder to douse your friends and others with. This is an amazing, colourful and beautiful festival, and tickets have been selling fast.

These are a few ideas of my ideas for things to do in June, will you go to any of these? Or is there something you would have liked to see on the list? If so, leave us a comment below.

How to Find an Internship

You may be in your second or third year of university and looking at the job market. It may be daunting for new graduates, with reports that in 2013 there were 12 million graduates in the UK. However, many businesses hiring new grads take them through internship programmes. Internships give you experience in your chosen area and are a useful addition to your CV. They allow you to network with the influencers in your field, and they give you hands on experience. In addition to these advantages, you will also be financially compensated. Legislation now dictates that ‘workers’ must receive at least the minimum national wage. (International students whose home country is outside of the EU will need to check with their university if they are able to work on their visa.) Instead of working in food service or retail while you study, a paid internship gives you the chance to advance your career. Start your internship search by following the tips below.

Student information blog internship jobs employment work experience

Use your university

Your tutors and careers service may know of companies which work with the university to offer internships. For example Queen Mary University has its own programme (QInterns), and the careers section of their website has lots of useful resources.

Utilise online internship searches

Several websites specialise in compiling internship information for students. Prospects has some good suggestions, and other useful information on internships. If you have dream company choices who aren’t actively offering internships, don’t be afraid to use a site such as LinkedIn to find hiring manager contact details. Talk to them to see if they would be interested in taking on an intern.

Consider your field

Some industries are much more likely than others to offer paid internships. Banking, IT, and government fields are likely to offer paid positions. Hard sciences also have a higher tendency to offer paid internships compared to arts programs.

Research your companies

Once you’ve found the paid internship of your dreams, make a great first impression. With the job market languishing, you will face a fair amount of competition for your internship opportunity. This is especially true if you are in a field that doesn’t have wide access to paid positions. Research the company, its goals, its products, and the company culture. You want to go into the interview with passion and energy. Show the company that you want to learn everything you can and that you already have the basics out of the way.

Say thank you

Once you complete the internship, stay in contact even if you don’t receive an immediate job offer. Send a thank you letter to all of your major points of contact within the company. You never know when a polite gesture may lead you into being considered for an opening in the future.