Explore the benefits of joining a graduate scheme and see our tips for finding opportunities at home and abroad.
Get extra help and support and see graduate scheme vacancies.
Graduate schemes are structured training programmes that give you the chance to experience various aspects of an organisation and undertake an accredited qualification (if the role requires it).
Schemes are mainly offered by large organisations and are highly competitive, accounting for under 10% of all graduate jobs.
At Sussex, we offer Sussex Graduate Associates. This is where you work on campus with a professional services department and develop your employability skills.
If you are an international student, the government’s Graduate visa route allows you to work in the UK after you graduate for two years, if you are an undergraduate or Masters student, or three years, if you are a PhD student.
Tips for finding graduate schemes
If you’re interested in joining a graduate scheme, it’s a good idea to start researching employers and their schemes.
- visit the Careers fair in November where you can find out more about organisations and their graduate schemes
- look for schemes using online employer directories and employer databases such as UK 300, Times Top 100, The JobCrowd, CareerHub, Prospects’ graduate employer profiles and TARGETjobs’ See who’s hiring
- find out about graduate starting salaries by sector from TARGETjobs.
Searching for schemes
Graduate schemes are also well-promoted via major graduate job sites, including:
- Bright Network (you can also look for graduate scheme> application deadlines by sector)
How to apply
To apply for a graduate scheme you usually have to:
- fill out an application form
- take part in selection tests or a video interview
- attend an assessment centre with other applicants
- go to a final interview.
Employers often visit campus to offer information and tips on their recruitment process.
If you’re an international student and interested in joining a graduate scheme, you can find out more about working after your studies and see our tips for applying for a job.
When applying, some employers will ask for UCAS points and GCSE grades. It is possible to get a Statement of Comparability from UK Naric, although they cannot convert your grade scores to UCAS points. You may need to contact employer for further advice about individual grade equivalences, or use the ‘note’ or ‘additional information’ section to explain your qualifications.
Some graduate schemes give you the opportunity to live and work overseas as part of the programme. We have listed some below, by sector. You may be required to have the right to work in the country to which you are applying. Check the details carefully for each scheme.
- Banking, finance and insurance
- Engineering, manufacturing and energy
- Food, Drink & FMCG
- Diageo Graduate Programme
- Heineken Graduate Programmes
- Beiersdorf Beyond Borders Graduate Trainee Programs
- BSH International Trainee Program
- ABInBev Global Management Trainee Program
- Mondelez International Early Careers
- KraftHeinz International Management Trainee Program
- Cargill European Graduate Program
- Transport and logistics
- Other options
- JET Programme UK - official Japanese government programme to teach in schools in Japan. There are JET schemes with many other countries, too, if you are an international student.
- Daiwa Scholarship
- British Council - English Language Assistants
- British Council - Study and work outside the UK
- Chatteris Educational Foundation
- Mountbatten Internship Programme
Further help and advice
If you need careers advice you can book an appointment with one of our careers consultants via CareerHub.
You can also:
- visit the Student Centre Welcome desk, 8.30am-5pm, Monday-Friday
- call 01273 075700, 9.30am-4.30pm, Monday-Friday.