ENGLISH LANGUAGE AND APPLIED LINGUISTICS STUDENT, RIKKI, TELLS US MORE ABOUT THE RED AWARD AND HOW IT CAN BENEFIT YOU…
Joining the RED Award during my first academic year at university was honestly one of the best decisions I have ever made.
I would highly recommend it to all students, particularly first and second years. It’s a great way to boost your CV and it really enhances your University transcript. From personal experience, it’s clear that having good grades or a degree is not enough when applying for a job and now employers look for more extra-curricular activities and work experience to supplement your studies. This is exactly what the RED Award can offer you, ensuring that you stand out from others entering the same competitive fields as you.
The RED award is essentially an employability skills certificate where you participate in 50 hours of extra-curricular activities outside of your academic studies. 35 hours of this is a ‘core activity’ which includes paid work, 10 hours is ‘volunteering’ and 5 hours is ‘training and development’, which is where you attend some small seminar-style classes that are held by the University and you learn about careers and placements etc. For the core activity, I worked for a direct marketing agency, for the volunteering I was a STaR mentor, and for the development I went to sessions about internships, thrive mentoring and training on how to become a mentor.
This really put me outside my comfort zone, making me become more confident and independent. It also enabled me to network and meet new people, from other students, to careers advisers and mentors. Prior to completing the RED award, my CV was quite basic, but this forced me to get the work experience that I needed. This was an extremely motivating experience which gave me insight on how to enhance my CV whilst encouraging me to go further and join the Advanced RED Award and Professional Track.
Although this does require some dedication, it’s so flexible and is designed to fit around your studies. There is no rush to complete it, although it’s best to do so within one academic year.
Completing this award couldn’t be easier. You simply log in to RISIS, go onto ACTIONS, and then sign up for the RED Award. You complete all your activities in your own time, get them signed off your checklist and then book a completion session. You will get regular emails that will help you find volunteering opportunities etc., and the people who organise the Award are very helpful and quickly answer any questions you may have.
I feel really passionately about making the most out of your university life and ensuring you leave with the best CV possible. It’s the small things, like this Award, that will truly make you stand out from your competitors when entering the world of work.