Olga spent her placement year working at the Field Studies Council on the doorstep of Snowdonia in North Wales. During the year, Olga took part in biological surveys, conservation projects, outdoor education and adventure activities. Thanks to her placement, Olga feels less daunted about entering the world of work after graduation.
“After reading through many Biology degree programmes, the Sheffield one excited me the most because of the amount of freedom the course gave in choosing modules, it’s a degree you can tailor to yourself. I also knew I wanted easy access to the outdoors and with the peak district a mere 20-minute bus journey away, Sheffield seemed ideal.
“At the end of my second year, I wanted a break from university and to make best use of this time I decided to find a year-long placement. The placement coordinator from the careers service was incredibly helpful in guiding me through my application and kept checking in to see how it was going. The placement supervisor from my department was then also available throughout the year to help me when I wasn’t sure about something.
Having experience in full-time work has left me with better abilities to self-motivate and structure my work, and I feel far less intimidated by the prospect of entering into working life after my degree.
BSc Biology with Placement Year
“My placement was with an environmental education charity called the Field Studies Council. Away from the daily grind and necessary tasks of stock checks, cleaning and preparing kit, the highlights of the job were taking part in biological surveys, conservation projects, outdoor education and adventure activities. I also worked with a lovely team and was lucky to be living in North Wales, with Snowdonia on my doorstep I could scramble, swim and climb in my free time. The location was idyllic and something I considered for a long time when choosing what placement to apply for.
“Having experience in full-time work has left me with better abilities to self-motivate and structure my work, and I feel far less intimidated by the prospect of entering into working life after my degree. I still don’t have a clear vision of my future career, but I have gained plenty of self-confidence and an understanding of an organisation’s structure and internal functioning, which I think will be useful in all future work.
“Looking to the future I feel much calmer and happy to focus on finishing third year without stressing about what will come afterwards. I know I have the skills to find and thrive in full-time work, and I am comfortable with trying different options out until I find a career I wish to pursue. Placement helped me realise my passion for being outdoors and conservation, so I will start with that and see where it takes me.”