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Catz Career Support

Career Skills Development

Education in the University extends beyond and outside the formal processes of lectures, practicals, supervisions and examinations; you need also to develop personal skills such as communication, organisation and drive that will help you in not only your studies, but also your future career and throughout your life; these are often described as ‘transferable skills’.

There are some formally organised opportunities to develop these skills, but involvement in extracurricular college or university activities (sport, music, societies) also plays an important part. You as an individual need to seek out these opportunities and fulfil your full potential at St Catharine’s.

There is a variety of opportunities for you to develop transferable skills still further, including:

  • Academic Induction sessions in Freshers Week on study skills, time management and supervisions.
  • Regular seminars for graduates to present their work and ideas to an audience of students and College staff.
  • Active participation in major College committees.
  • Management of student facilities, such as the Junior and Middle Combination Rooms (JCR and MCR).
  • Grants to attend conferences, language training courses, etc.
  • Encouragement to attend external transferable skills training sessions.
  • Funding for societies running talks, social events, debates, and more.
  • Funding for sporting and musical facilities, events, equipment and tours.

University-wide information on transferable skills for undergraduates can be found at:

Vacation Study Grants

Thanks to the generosity of Catz alumni, the College is able to offer grants to undergraduates wishing to undertake vacation study or courses of direct relevance to their degree, and to graduates to assist their research.

For example (but this is not an exclusive list), support is available for:

  • Undergraduates reading Modern Languages or Asian and Middle Eastern Studies, to help towards the costs of short visits to relevant countries
  • Geographers, for help towards the costs of field trips
  • Historians, to assist with the costs of independent research
  • Natural Scientists, to assist them with the costs of vacation fieldwork and lab work.
  • Attendance at academic conferences or the purchase of research materials.

Academic Internships

Catz also has competitive exchange and internship schemes at other leading universities:

  • Heidelberg. A full-year exchange for one student; one place on a summer German Language Course (both with funding from Heidelberg University).
  • Kyoto. A full-year exchange for one student (with funding from Doshisha University and Catz).
  • California. Two places on a summer research placement at California Institute of Technology (with funding from Caltech).

Further information on these internships/exchanges is available on the College website and from the Senior Tutor.

Professional Internships

Recently, the St Catharine’s College Society (which consists of all members of the College past and present) has agreed to commit up to £5,000 this year to support career development activities for students in receipt of full or almost-full awards from the Cambridge Bursary Scheme. Each bursary is for £500, designed to help fund travel, living and other day-to-day expenses for students looking to take a minimum of four weeks’ unpaid work experience or project work with recognised organisations in the UK or abroad during the Long Vacation.

Further information on these internships is available on the Society Website and from the

Career Link

The St Catharine’s College Society runs a web-based service called Career Link. Introduced in consultation with College Tutors, its aim is to assist St Catharine’s undergraduates and recent graduates in exploring possible career paths. The key features of the scheme are:

  • The Career Link database holds employment details and a brief career resume for over 100 alumni who have volunteered to help.
  • Undergraduates and recent graduates are able to search this database in order to find alumni who have experience in areas that interest them.
  • They are then able to contact the relevant alumni through the website. Initial contacts should be made electronically, but - if both parties agree - may lead to phone or face-to-face contact.
  • The contact could involve a discussion, but might extend to job shadowing, an
    internship or mentoring. This will, however, be negotiated between the individuals concerned: alumni are not under any obligation to offer beyond what they wish to provide.
  • In addition to career information, a fertile area for discussion might be the skills required for success in the relevant field, and how they link with the student’s strengths and the skills being developed through their studies and extracurricular activities.
  • The service does not include job placement.

If you wish to use this service, contact:

The service has been planned in close consultation with the Cambridge University Careers Service, which offers a similar service entitled GradLink (

Catz Careers and Alumni Careers Evenings

This student-run society helps to provide the practical link between past and present students of St Catharine's College. We aim to offer industry insights to support students' career choices. We do this by running workshops and talks to offer an access to a network of resources that will provide students with skills and connect them with successful entrepreneurs, industry professionals and companies. We welcome back any alumnus who may want to speak to Catz students about their company or industry and also give career advice. We work with other student societies, the Development Office and the St Catharine’s College Society to make this all happen. The Alumni Careers Evening is a new event for current students wishing to explore and discuss their career path with relevant alumni. Many students either want to find out more about a particular field or sector, or do not know exactly what they wish to do. Alumni experience, advice and insights are invaluable. The evening starts off with presentations from the University Careers Service and the relevant Catz societies discussing what help and support is available whilst here, and then proceeds to a formal dinner in Hall with alumni and students seated according to interests and sectors.

University Careers Service

The Careers Service provides careers information, advice and guidance to all current of Cambridge undergraduate and postgraduate students, as well as a life-long service for Cambridge alumni.

The portal to all the Careers Service has to offer is its website Here, for example, you can search for vacation work; sign up to receive Click emails on career issues of interest to you; check the online Diary for information, skills development and recruitment events run by the Careers Service or employers; use the online tests and career interest questionnaires, and information on a range of career sectors, to explore your career interests and options; and look to see how you can book a guidance session with a Careers Adviser.

In addition, the Careers Service publishes an annual Cambridge Careers Guide, which gives an overview of many careers areas, career choices and the services available via the Careers Service. It also includes sample CVs. Copies of The Guide are distributed via Colleges early in the Michaelmas Term. You can also collect a free copy from the Careers Service at Stuart House.

Other services provided by the Careers Service include:

  • A guide to writing CVs and Cover Letters (available free from the Careers Service)
  • GradLink – a database of Cambridge graduates who have agreed to be contacted informally by current students on career issues
  • In addition to offering free, confidential, impartial short and long appointments to discuss career issues you can also book a practice interview and get feedback on your performance
  • A Public Interest Vacation Work Bursary scheme open to 1st and 2nd year undergraduates who plan to volunteer or take unpaid work in a charity or similar, in the UK or abroad (see under 'B' at
  • You are able to use the Careers Service for the rest of your life; access does not stop once you have left Cambridge.

Sources of careers information


  • Career Link
  • Alumni and Development Office
  • Alumni Careers Evening and professional internships
  • Competitive academic internships and vacation study grants
  • Catz Careers
  • Directors of Studies and Tutors


Careers Service
Stuart House, Mill Lane, Cambridge CB2 1XE
Telephone 01223 338283

Opening Hours
During Full Term: Mon-Fri 9.15–5.15

Outside Full Term:
Mon-Fri 9.15–1.00 & 2.15–5.00

Last modified 25th June 2012