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Increase your employability at university

Published 20 Jul, 2023  ·  2-minute read

As the global job market becomes increasingly mobile and competitive, university graduates need to do even more to stand out from the crowd.

Employers expect graduates to have the knowledge and skills they have gained through their studies as well as the personal qualities that guide workplace performance. In short, they expect graduates to have employability skills.

But what is employability, exactly?

Employability means having the skills and mindset to successfully gain, create and maintain work, making you able to perform effectively within a work environment. Having these skills helps you secure a job, manage your career, adapt to new work situations and make a positive impact through your work.

UQ's Employability team offers training, resources and experiences to help you make the most of your time as a student and gain a competitive edge before you enter the workforce.

Here's how to increase your employability at university and set yourself up for success.

Watch Get the edge at UQ on YouTube.

Get global experience

Global experiences help you develop independence, maturity and other important life skills that enhance your professional and personal life.

UQ has agreements with over 120 universities in 30+ countries around the world and has a generous scholarship program for students going on exchange.

Find a global experience

Gain practical skills through internships

Internships help you to gain a competitive edge in the job market, building your interpersonal skills and exposing you to a new professional network.

Many UQ faculties offer course-based internship programs, and the UQ StudentHub lists a range of opportunities online that students can apply for.

Learn about internships


Volunteering is an ideal way to build your skills and extend your professional and personal network while contributing to a worthy cause. Every volunteering experience widens the range of experiences and knowledge that might just be what your employer is looking for.

We can help you access opportunities at UQ or with organisations in Australia and worldwide. Plus, you can apply to be a UQ volunteer or even represent UQ at events.

Become a volunteer

Find a mentor

UQ offers a number of mentoring programs that provide valuable leadership and guidance through all stages of your time at UQ and beyond.

From supporting new students in the transition to uni life, to building positive cultural, social and professional connections, there’s sure to be a mentoring community to support and inspire you.

See our mentoring programs

Get research experience

In-demand employability skills include being able to think and reason critically, develop innovative ideas, analyse data and clearly explain results.

UQ offers a range of programs to help you build these skills through early research experience — so you can test drive research even as an undergraduate student.

Find a research opportunity

Reflect and learn

Just having an experience is not enough to develop your employability. You need to reflect on your experiences to understand what skills you drew on, and how you can use them again to best effect in a work context.

We've created a structured process of self-reflection (the SEAL process). SEAL walks you through your experiences and helps you identify the skills and attributes you've developed.

Reflect on your experience

Follow these steps to increase your employability at university and you'll be on the best path to secure a job after graduation. Remember to continue working on your employability skills throughout your career, to help you progress to new and exciting roles and projects.

Interested in gaining industry experience that counts towards your degree? Discover how advanced business student Katie undertook a work-integrated learning (WIL) course that increased her employability skills.

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