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How can the College Careers team help me?

Who are ‘The Careers Team’?​

  • Professional guidance advisers ​
  • Lindsey Skelly- Careers Leader​
  • Kirsty Mews- Careers Adviser​
  • Freddie Hopkins –Uni Connect Officer​

What is the aim of careers guidance?

  • To assist people at any age and at any point throughout their lives.​
  • To help them make informed make educational, training and occupational decisions and to manage their careers.​
  • To help with the uncertainty of a person’s next steps.​
  • Provide the upmost and up-to-date expert knowledge and information on the expanding occupational and educational developments, and to present learners with a wide range of opportunities available and applicable to them (LMI).​
  • Help to provide people with an increased self-awareness and insights into self in relation to jobs, to enable people to make independent decisions about which options are the most appropriate for them. ​

How can we help you with employment and apprenticeships?

  • Provide you with information of how to start your apprenticeship vacancy search.​
  • Give you hints and tips of where to look for vacancies​
  • Get you to start considering your own research methods of how you will find and research potential opportunities with companies and employers.​
  • Guide you to consider factors such as: where you will want to work, which type of company etc….​
  • Help you to decide if an apprenticeship if right for you.​
  • Give you the tools so you can research which industry and role is right for you.​
  • Support you if you require advice and techniques on applications/C.Vs and interviews​

Careers guidance at York College-Step by step…

  • Appointment-based system accessed and booked via their student portal- virtual, phone, e-guidance.​
  • Support provided by qualified careers advisers.​
  • Confidential, impartial advice to meet the individual’s needs.​
  • Our service is free, confidential and supports your individual journey.​
  • Students can email: ​
  • Careers Action Plan written-up.​
  • Repeat appointments available if needed.​

How do I decide on a career?​

Let’s think about the word ‘Career’.​

  • An occupation/job in an industry.​
  • An area that you can progress in.​
  • A period of employment one may see themselves working in for a significant period of time.​

There are thousands of jobs with many different professions

This can feel overwhelming-

You need to narrow your options down in order to feel more confident when considering this question and searching for a role that you may feel will be suited to you. ​

​ Career advisors cannot provide you with one single direct job for you to pursue. This needs to come from your independent research.​

But they can help to guide you with the research, entry into professions and help you to consider factors that will guide towards an industry area/roles that you can then explore and research further to help narrow down you options.​

What can YOU do?

Consider where you are now, where you want to be and how you're going to get there. If choosing a career has left you feeling lost, start by asking yourself the following questions:​

  • What am I good at?​
  • What are my motivations and values?​
  • What kind of lifestyle do I want?​
  • What do I want from my career?​
  • What is important to me?​

Focus on one industry area in particular. This can be achieved by thinking about:​

  • your skills.​
  • Your strengths.​
  • your interests/hobbies.​
  • your favourite subjects and topics studied on courses.​

​Compile a shortlist of around five to ten jobs, before considering the advantages and disadvantages of each in terms of:​

  • career progression ​
  • entry requirements and routes of how to achieve getting there​
  • job description and the duties of the job itself​
  • salary and conditions​
  • Training​
  • Are there many opportunities available?​

Now you're ready to start making decisions. Combine what you've learned about yourself with what you've discovered about your options.​

  • From your shortlist of options, decide which occupation interests you the most and select one or two alternatives to fall back on if you're not able to pursue your first choice.​
  • To help make a decision, ask yourself the following questions:​
  • Will I enjoy doing the job every day?​
  • Does it meet most of my preferences?​
  • Do I have the right skills?​
  • Does the company fit with my values?​
  • Are there any location/financial/skills limitations that I need to take into account?​
  • Do I have the correct entry requirements to get into the area of work/ if not how do I get there?​

When you have narrowed your search down…​

This is then the perfect time to consider work experience and internships, work shadowing and volunteering opportunities. They'll help you gain an insight into the areas you're interested in before committing yourself to a certain career path. Get in touch with your college work placements team or look on volunteer search engines to explore options available. You could also approach employers yourself to seek out work experience.​

Consider how you are going to get there…​

  • Look at the entry routes and requirements needed to enter your desired profession and make a plan of how you can achieve your ambition.​
  • This may be by:​
  • Further study​
  • An apprenticeship​
  • Full-time employment​

Don't forget that career planning is a continuous process and that careers develop and change. You will likely have several roles in your life too. ​

If you would like any help to guide you with decision then get in touch with your careers service at

How to book a Careers appointment? ​

Click on your York College Student Portal​

Scroll down to the boxes and click ‘Career Appointments’.​

Choose the type of appointment and date and time that you would like. ​

Add your contact details and a brief description of how the Careers Adviser can help you/what you would like help with.​

Await your confirmation and relax

  • Remember, if you change your mind, that’s OK! There can always be a new plan of action for your progression and development should your plans change. Speak to your careers team to help your planning with this. ​

Linear and non-linear career pathways.​

What is the difference between a linear and non-linear career pathway?​

  • Linear career pathways- are jobs within specific industries that will require you to study certain qualifications at Post 16 and University level study to enter them. These areas include: Medicine, Veterinary Science, Healthcare professions, STEM careers, or a role that requires vocational/technical qualifications to enter a specific trade. More specific entry requirements for qualifications are required to enter these fields. ​
  • Non-linear career pathways- are jobs that allow entry with a varying range of qualifications that can be studied at Post 16 or University. More flexible in their entry requirements for subjects studied, none necessarily specific.​
  • It is also important to be aware that even if you firstly decide on linear career pathway/ subject choices at Post 16 study and University, that you can be flexible with these too to enter different industries should your career plans and aspirations change. Likewise, even if you choose a non-linear pathway, there can be further opportunities for you to enter linear careers through further study, should you have the appropriate GCSE grades for entry on to them.​

How can I find out which route I may be aspiring towards?

  • Consider what job role/ or industry you would like to aspire to. This can be based on many factors such as: interests/ hobbies/strengths/ favourite subjects/your learning style etc…​
  • Research! Use tools like The National Careers Service and Prospects to look through industry areas and job profile entry requirements to look at what they require for entry to the role/ profession. This way you can see if your route is more linear (specific) or non-linear (flexible) in their entry requirements. ​

See ‘The Bigger Picture’…

  • Some people may be put off by studying a specific subject or course at college or university (even if they love the subject) because they cannot see ‘The Bigger Picture’ of what it can offer them in terms of transferable and employability skills/ future progression in the working world. ​
  • Some people tend to think that some courses and subjects studied at Post 16 and University limits them to only enter specific job roles in that specific subject area only and not any more, when really it is much more wider and varying than you may think! For example, if you were to study L3 BTEC in Performing Arts, then you can become a Police Officer! And if you were to study Engineering at University that you can do a conversion course at Postgraduate level to enter Social Work!​
  • It is important to acknowledge that if you study a course of interest that is not required for a linear pathway, that it will not limit you in terms of future opportunities, but it is important to do your research if you are considering a linear pathway to ensure that you are aware of what they are looking for specifically to enter the field firstly.​

Useful Links:​

If you have a specific question about our Virtual Open Days, simply get in touch.