Equality, diversity and social mobility

We believe that anyone with the potential to succeed at University should be given the opportunity to do so. We also want to do more to ensure that students from all socio-economic backgrounds have fair access to the range of graduate opportunities and successfully make the transition into their chosen area with confidence.

The Equality Act 2010 protects jobseekers and employees from discrimination on the basis of certain characteristics such as age, disability, gender reassignment, race, religion or belief, sex or sexual orientation. We will be adding more information and resources to these pages over the coming months and will provide you with individual, confidential support around equality and employment within one-to-one career guidance interviews.

All students can access support from the Careers Service from the day they enrol and can continue to do so for life. This includes all our events, workshops, one-to-one coaching, advice and guidance and our Careers portal, MyCareer

We understand that some students may have additional barriers to overcome in order to develop their career.  With this in mind we have developed a range of targeted initiatives and resources to help less-advantaged students develop their professional network, gain an insight into different work sectors, access new experiences and develop their employability skills.

Professional Mentoring Programme

Get advice, professional insight and support with your career development with your own Professional Mentor on this six-month programme. 

We will match you with a Professional Mentor who is working in an industry that (as far as possible) reflects your interests and provide you with the opportunity to meet up with them on a regular basis either face-to-face, online, via e-mail or over the phone. 

Take a look at our Professional Mentoring pages for more details.

New for 2021: The Career Insight Programme and Career Development Bursary

We are pleased to announce our first ever Careers Insight Programme and Career Development Bursary for our students from under-represented groups at the University.


To be eligible for the Career Insight Programme and Career Development Bursary, you must be a registered UK Home student, at the University of Plymouth.


Your household income, as assessed by Student Finance should not exceed £35,000 per year and you must have applied for all income-assessed funding available to you i.e. the student maintenance loan.

And you should consider yourself to be a student from any one of the following groups:

  • You are from an ethnic group that is under-represented at the University i.e. Black, Asian or other ethnic minority group.
  • Your home postcode prior to coming to University falls within an area where relatively few young people enter higher education. You can find out by seeing if the postcode is listed as within 'Quintile 1' on the POLAR checking tool
  • You are a mature student (aged 21 or over when you started your first undergraduate course).
  • You are a care-leaver or an estranged student.
  • You have a disability. Please note that the term disability is very wide; further details of what may be considered a disability are in the definition of disability

Approvals process

Decisions will be made by the Careers Service (and employers in regards to the career insight programme) based on the strength of the application. We aim to support as many students as possible, however funding is limited we may not be able to support every applicant. Please refer to the eligibility and prioritisation criteria above.

You will be notified by your university email if you have been successful and the bursary paid using the bank account details you have provided to Student Finance.

Career Insight Programme

Work experience is one of the most of effective ways of gaining an insight into graduate employment whilst also giving you the platform to develop valuable employability skills. The added benefit is the opportunity to start building your own professional network.

The Careers Insight Programme, sponsored by Santander, will provide four students a career enhancing experience with an internal department to the University or an external business. This will happen over a condensed period of time, around studies.

What’s involved?

The programme includes:

  • A five-week period of part-time work experience consisting of defined project and associated tasks
  • An authentic experience of graduate recruitment
  • A workplace induction/training
  • An insight into the organisation’s structure, sector and typical career journeys of the team
  • Work shadowing with the wider team
  • A generous bursary payment (£1,250) upon completion

Students will be required to complete a testimonial/case study to reflect on their time during the programme and will be offered a scheduled appointment with a dedicated careers advisor. 

How do I apply?

  • Check you fulfil the above eligibility criteria and log on to MyCareer.  
  • Opportunities will be advertised on myCareer. Once they go live, simply click through for more detail and how to apply.
  • Click apply, and follow the link to the Santander Becas website and complete the online application.
  • Upload your CV and a cover letter. Tell us why you would like to undertake this experience and what you could offer to the specific role. We can support you with your application.
  • Shortlisting will take place after applications close and you will be notified if you have been successful or not

 Register your Interest

You can register your interest here to participate in this programme, meaning we will keep you informed of new opportunities and updates.

Should the programme be oversubscribed, preference will be given to specific under-represented students who are Black and/or from a Low Participation Neighbourhood (LPN, polar 4, quintile 1).

Career Development Bursary

This bursary, worth £250, is intended to contribute to the costs of undertaking career development activities that will enhance and/or develop your career and professional knowledge, experience and networks. The bursary is intended to help you access opportunities that would otherwise not be possible due to the costs involved. You must be able to show us how this bursary will directly benefit your career development.

What can be funded?

The bursary is for career development activities such as:

  • expenses associated with work experiences such as placements, internships or other work experiences such as volunteering such as travel, accommodation or enhanced technology for virtual experiences.
  • attending industry and/or sector specific conferences
  • attending career networking events
  • membership of professional organisations relevant to your career aspirations
  • attending accredited and non-accredited training courses relevant to your career aspirations

You may apply for funding for more than one activity/event on one application form but you must specify how each one will enhance your career development.

 If you are successful, we will ask you to provide us with a brief case study outlining your experiences and how the activity helped you meet your career objectives. This will be used (with your permission) on the University’s website and publications.

What cannot be funded with the bursary?

  • Activity which is unrelated to career development
  • Field trips or other excursions that are a core part of your academic programme
  • Costs for activities which have been covered by another budget such as the Career Insight Bursary or the Santander Scholarship
  • Costs over the £250 limit

Application process

There are three application windows in which you can apply for the Career Development Bursary

Spring 2021:      March

Summer 2021:   May

Autumn 2021:   November

When completing the form please set out the approximate costs with links to any relevant websites or copies of quotations and documentation to support your application. Travel and accommodation should use the most economic means possible.

To apply, please complete the application form.

If you have any questions, please just contact Pippa Waller in the Careers Service via the Careers Hub.

Please continue to visit!

We will be adding more resources and information to these pages in due course and would welcome your feedback.

Bursary case study: Yasmin Meeda

Yasmin applied for a Santander Bursary, a predecessor to do the Career Development Bursary.

"With the bursary I wanted to be able to visit the science museum after hours, watch the phenomenal Sir David Attenborough receive a lifetime science award and network with fellow scientists. Such an opportunity would allow me to gain an insight into the career opportunities available after a masters.

The grant made it possible for me to meet with Dame Julia Goodfellow and discuss opportunities for encouraging BAME students into science, network and discover that completing a PhD could help to open doors. 

This has given me hope for a career as a research scientist. It was the perfect opportunity to meet inspirational, like-minded people and explore the wonderful world of science."