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Trinity Employability Award

The Trinity Employability Award provides an invaluable opportunity to increase your career readiness by helping you articulate the Trinity Graduate Attributes you have developed as part of your academic programme, as well as through co-curricular and extra-curricular activity. Over the course of one semester, it equips you with a set of specific employability skills to help you gain a competitive edge in the workplace. The workshops and career readiness activities involved will give you the opportunity to enrich your understanding of the employment sectors and the skills valued by employers, as well as an opportunity to apply your learning to work-related situations. You will also have the opportunity to engage with our partner employers and organisations who are actively fostering innovation in their field.

There are three levels of the Award for you to choose from allowing you to choose how far you progress - Level 1 (Participate), Level 2 (Complete), and Level 3 (Compete). Each level you progress through will add to your skills and further enhance your employability through these innovative programmes.

Trinity Employability Award model (2016 - 2022)

This is an example of the general structure of a Pathway which is part of the Trinity Employability Award. You can check out the Award Pathway subpages below to find out what unique opportunities are available in each sector.

Students who complete all activities in each Level will recieve a certificate to acknowledge their skills development and successful participation.

You can click below to expand the sections and learn more about what's involved at each Level of an Employability Award Pathway.

Level 1: Extra-curricular activities

As part of the Trinity Employability Award students must complete a minimum 10 hours of extracurricular activity and upload a reference to confirm these hours. These extracurricular activities should aim to develop and apply your Trinity Graduate Attributes outside of your academic studies. Below you can find the criteria and examples of eligible activities from previous participants. These hours should ideally be completed during the Award.

Criteria for eligible activities

  • Your activity must be verifiable by a third-party with responsibility for the activity e.g. a supervisor, manager, team captain, instructor
  • Your activity must be outside the requirements of your core academic curriculum
  • You can combine hours from multiple activities to reach the requirement
  • The activity can be undertaken with Trinity or externally

Activities which meet the requirement include:

  • Participating on the committee of a student society which is registered with Trinity's Central Societies Committee (CSC)
  • Attending classes, training, competitions or participating on the committee of a sports club registered with Dublin University Central Athletic Club (DUCAC)
  • Volunteering with a registered charity or as part of a Trinity initiative, e.g. S2S mentoring, VDP homework club
  • Participating in Trinity's Students Union (TCDSU) e.g. as a faculty convenor or class representative
  • Participating in Enterprise activities.g. business challenge, SMF, Launchbox, Launchpad
  • Participating in student activities such as the Ability Co-op
  • Participating in an society, sports club, or activity outside of Trinity similar to those listed above as part of an official group or organisation
  • Internships which are not undertaken as part of your core academic curriculum
  • Part-time work e.g. customer service, retail or any other similar paid employment

Activities which do not meet the requirement:

  • Activities undertaken by yourself which cannot be verified by a third party referee e.g. personal exercise, online content creation, travelling
  • Activities verified by a family member who does not have an official capacity within the organisation or group with which you have undertaken the activity

Examples of eligible activities

Students participating in the Trinity Employability Award have undertaken a wide range of extracurricular activities. Examples include:

Within Trinity

  • Student society committee member or otherwise active involvement. Past participants have been involved in e.g.
    • Committee member in the Japanese Society
    • Debates convenor in the Philosophical Society
    • Tribes' Leader in the Afrocarribean Society
    • Incubator Operations in the Trinity Entreprenurial Society

  • Student sports club committee member or active participant in training activities
  • S2S Mentor/S2S Programme Officer/Treasurer - S2S Society
  • Macro analyst Trinity Student Managed Fund (SMF)
  • Committee Member - Student Society
  • Engineering lead - Formula Trinity
  • Green Campus Subcommittee member
  • DU Law Society – certified speaker series participation
  • Providing weekly grinds to Leaving Cert Maths students - Voluntary Tuition Programme (VTP)
  • Organising speakers, attending weekly meetings - European Law Students’ Association (Society)
  • Student ambassador for secondary school students on immersion course - Trinity Access Programme (TAP)
  • Class Rep/ School Convenor/ Part-time officer- TCDSU
    Global Relations Student Ambassador -International Student Experience Team, Global Relations Office

Part-time work outside of Trinity

  • Restaurant/café staff
  • Customer service/Hospitality
  • Tour guide
  • Personal tutor/Leaving Cert subject grinds
  • Online Zoom Youth Club organiser
  • Exam invigilator
  • Social media assistant/content creator
  • Section organiser - Scouts
  • Call centre operator
  • Administrative worker
  • Consulting work - Irish Student Consulting Group (ISCG)
  • Graphic design
  • Child-minding
  • Volunteering - charity shop

Education and internships (non-curriculum)

  • Research assistant for political party
  • Marketing assistant in international student department
  • COVID Interns - part-time internship as behavioural analyst
  • Innovation and Entrepreneurship certificate - Tangent
  • Laidlaw Undergraduate Research and Leadership Programme

Sports outside of Trinity

  • Junior Camogie Team (Senior Level) - GAA Club
  • Secretary - Athletics Club
  • Horse riding - supervised cross-country, dressage, show-jumping
  • Player - local footbcall club
  • Sailing instructor
  • Powerlifting - competitive, supervised

Extra-curricular reference submission guidelines

To submit your reference please download the Trinity Employability Award - Level 1 Reference template and ask your referee to complete it. Upload the completed original file to the Extra-curricular activity on your Award Pathway on MyCareer. The reference provided must include all the information to be accepted. Referees may be contacted to verify your involvement.

  • If your involvement is with a society/sports club in Trinity the society chair/club captain can act as your referee
  • If you are the society chair you can contact Emma Matthews at emma@csc.tcd.ie to act as your referee
  • If you are the club captain you can contact DUCAC at ducac@tcd.ie to act as your referee
  • If your involvement is in the Trinity Students' Union you can contact your faculty convener or the TCDSU Education Officer to act as referee

Level 1: Employability workshops

All students participating in an Award Pathway will complete a Career readiness workshop and skills workshops with our Award partners.

"Make It Count" career readiness workshop

This workshop is facilitated by Trinity Careers Service will include a detailed overview of the different aspects of the Trinity Employability Award and will be an opportunity to ask questions and meet other students progressing through the Award.

By participating in this workshop you will:

  • Learn how to reflect on, identify and articulate your skills and attributes, and apply critical thinking strategies to extra-curricular experiences, setting goals and reflecting on competencies and skills you develop
  • Learn the core competencies employers look for when recruiting
  • Learn how to outline your employability skills in written applications and at interview
  • Enhance your ability to use reflective practice in your academic and personal development

Employer partner workshops

The workshops facilitated by our partner employers will be an opportunity to get a first hand insight into the ethos, workplace culture, and creativity of their company. Facilitated by industry experts, our partners offer workshops to develop both soft and technical skills in an exciting and innovative topic in their sector.

Level 2: Employability Assessment

Students participating in Level 2 will meet with employers to complete a bespoke employability assessment activity and receive feedback. This will vary from employer and can include a CV review, a mock interview, a personality assessment tool, and similar. Details will be available on opportunities with each employer on the relevant pathway page.

Level 2: Reflective assessment

Students participating in Level 2 must complete a reflective assessment based on the Trinity Graduate Attributes. The aim of this assessment is to enable you to articulate your development with a focus on how you achieved this by engaging with the Award.

Your overall submission should:

  • Creatively demonstrate the learning described through a related image
  • Reflect on your experience of these attributes over the course of the Award
  • Illustrate your development of the Trinity Graduate Attributes

Submission guidelines

To complete this assessment you must:

  1. Submit an image that you feel represents development of a Trinity Graduate Attribute while you were participating in the Award (this can include workshops, your extra-curricular experiences, or other learning) alongside a paragraph of description to give context to the image (100 words maximum)
  2. Complete and submit the Trinity Guided Reflection Tool reflecting on your development of the Trinity Graduate Attributes while participating in the Award. You can focus on whichever aspect of the award programme you feel there has been most development for you e.g. Make It Count workshop, employer workshop, extra-curricular activity, etc.

Criteria for image and description

You can consider the following questions as a starting point for your submission of the image and accompanying paragraph (100 words maximum):

  • How have you achieved your chosen Trinity Graduate Attribute by participating in the Award?
  • Which aspects of the Award helped you achieve it?
  • Why is it important and what does it mean to you?
  • Why did you choose the image?
  • What do you see in it?
  • How does this image represent or synthesise your learning from the programme?
  • What does it say about you and your learning?

Your image should:

  • Creatively demonstrate the experience you have described in your written reflection
  • Be an image (photo, illustration, graphic) which you have created or a photo of you taken by a third-party which you have permission to use
  • Be created during your participation in the Award
  • Have a relevant title

Your image does not necessarily have to be of professional quality but it should be of a technical standard sufficient to display in a professional setting i.e. not blurry, well-lit, high resolution, and jpeg or png file format. Photos cannot be taken on partner employer premises or during Employability Award workshops.

Images submitted as part of this assessment may be displayed at the Trinity Employability Award final ceremony and on related websites and social media. See a selection of images submitted as part of this assessment by students above.

Trinity Guided Reflection Tool

Students participating in Level 2 must submit the Trinity Guided Reflection Tool as part of this assessment. This tool will guide you through a reflection on your learnings gained from taking part in the Trinity Employability Award, in particular, how the experience helped you to develop each of the Trinity Graduate Attributes.

Submission guidelines

You can submit the Tool by downloading and completing the typed PDF form. Alternatively, you can answer the prompts in the Tool in an alternative format, e.g. by uploading an audio recording, submitting a Microsoft Sway story, or an equivalent representation. Please contact employability@tcd.ie if you have any submission queries.

Level 3: Practice video interview

Students participating in Level 3 and submit a practice video interview. This can be done at any time between the start of the semester and the submission date for Level 3 specified in the Award timeline

As a Trinity student you have exclusive access to Shortlist.me video interviewing software. This allows you to practice the type of pre-recorded, one-way video interviews that employers are increasingly using as a screening method, before inviting candidates to a live interview.

Note: Students participating on the Social Action Pathway have the option of choosing the tailored 'Social Action Related Job' interview on Shortlist.me or any of the others available.

Submission guidelines

  1. Log onto Shortlist.me
  2. Select your preferred interview from the Shortlist.me interview library
  3. Enter your contact details
  4. A link to the video interview is emailed to you
  5. Click on the link in your email from Shortlist.me and complete your video interview
  6. When you have finished your interview a confirmation email will be sent to you
  7. Take a screenshot or save a copy of this confirmation email (example image below)
  8. Make sure your screenshot contains sender, receiver and date information, as in the example image below, otherwise it will be not be accepted
  9. Upload this screenshot to the 'Online Practice Video' activity on Level 3 of the Award Pathway on MyCareer - this will validate your completion
Example of an interview completion email from Shortlist.me

Level 3: Employer challenge

Each employer partner offers a challenge for students who have reached Level 3 of the Award. This challenge may include making a presentation, submitting a written assessment, or applying and interviewing for an internship position. All students who participate, and complete all other Award requirements will gain skills and experience, in addition to receiving a Level 3 certificate. There will also be overall winners for each Level 3 challenge who will recieve an employer prize, which may include a work-based opportunity such as an internship, or a cash prize.

Previous Winners of the Trinity Employability Award

You can find details below on all the overall winners of the Trinity Employability Awards.

2020/2021

Winning Student Programme Trinity Employability Award Partner Employer
Ryan Penrose Biochemistry Pharma Pathway MSD Dunboyne Biologics
Pulkit Agarwal Computer Engineering Digital Health (Medical Devices) Pathway Neuromod
Linette Hartzell Bioengineering Digital Health (Medical Devices) Pathway Neuromod
Lile Donohue Philosophy, Political Science, Economics and Sociology Single Pathway Social Action (Migration) Pathway Irish Refugee Council
Elena Stotts-Lee Philosophy, Political Science, Economics and Sociology Single Pathway Social Action (Migration) Pathway Irish Refugee Council
Sierra Mueller-Owens Law and Political Science Joint Pathway Social Action (Migration) Pathway IOM - The UN Agency
Cillian Diskin Law and Business Joint Pathway Professional Services Pathway PwC
Conall Roe Economic and Social Studies Professional Services Pathway EY
Stephen Ennis Economic and Social Studies Professional Services Pathway Deloitte

2019/2020

Winning Student Programme Trinity Employability Award Partner Employer
Shreya Pattar TSM English Literature and Philosophy Professional Services Pathway KPMG
Orla Hughes Law Single Pathway Professional Services Pathway EY
Suzanne Dias Law and Business Joint Pathway Professional Services Pathway PwC
Oisín Horgan Global Business Professional Services Pathway Deloitte
Liew Chee Foong Pharmacy - Integrated Pharma Pathway Takeda
Aghogho Atiyota Pharmacy - Integrated Pharma Pathway Pfizer
Deirdre Donohue Psychology Single Pathway Trinity Employability Award in partnership with Intel Intel
Peter Herbert Physics Single Pathway Trinity Employability Award in partnership with Intel Intel

2018/2019

Winning Student Programme Trinity Employability Award Partner Employer
Eoin Caffrey Nanoscience - Physics & Chemistry of Advanced Materials Trinity Employability Award in partnership with Intel Intel
Dawn Kelly Nanoscience - Physics & Chemistry of Advanced Materials Trinity Employability Award in partnership with Intel Intel
Jamison Engels Computer Science and Business Professional Services Pathway Deloitte
Maebh Ni Ghuairim Law and Political Science Professional Services Pathway PwC
Mark Finn Economics and Political Science Professional Services Pathway EY
Deirdre Donohue Psychology Professional Services Pathway KPMG

2017/2018

Winning Student Programme Trinity Employability Award Partner Employer
Anastasiia Shandra Nanoscience - Physics & Chemistry of Advanced Materials Trinity Employability Award in partnership with Intel Intel
Sean Mok Nanoscience - Physics & Chemistry of Advanced Materials Trinity Employability Award in partnership with Intel Intel

2016/2017

Winning Student Programme Trinity Employability Award Partner Employer
Rebecca Kelly Nanoscience - Physics & Chemistry of Advanced Materials Trinity Employability Award in partnership with Intel Intel
Dale Chen Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering Trinity Employability Award in partnership with Intel Intel

Further information

If you have any questions about the Award after reading the above material, you can send them by email to employability@tcd.ie.

You should also engage with Trinity Careers Service on social media for updates on this Award and our other activities.

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