What is the Winchester Passport?
Achieving the Winchester Passport will help you stand out from the crowd in what is a competitive job market. It will help you to show graduate employers that you have gained essential graduate employability skills and give you the confidence to articulate these skills within future job applications.
What are employability skills?
Employability skills have been defined by the CBI as ‘A set of attributes, skills and knowledge that all labour market participants should possess to ensure they have the capability of being effective in the workplace – to the benefit of themselves, their employer and the wider economy.’
The key graduate employability skills are listed in Future Fit as:
- Team working
- Business and customer awareness
- Problem solving
- Communication and literacy
- Application of numeracy
- Application of information technology
Underpinning all these attributes, the key foundation must be a positive attitude: a ‘can-do’ approach, a readiness to take part and contribute, openness to new ideas & a drive to make these happen (‘Future fit: preparing graduates for the world of work’, CBI and Universities UK).
Employability is incredibly important because it affects your ability to realise your potential, both now and later, and get what you want from higher education – whether you want a career, self-employment, further study etc.
Why should I take part?
Increasingly employers are looking for evidence of relevant experience when recruiting a graduate. “Twenty-first century graduates need to demonstrate to employers that they can ‘hit the ground running.’ In addition to working hard to gain a good degree, students should obtain work experience in order to develop skills that will make them better prepared for the world of work.’’ (Carl Gilleard, Chief Executive of the Association of Graduate Recruiters)
As more graduates, over 270,000 each year, compete for employment in a rapidly changing world of work, it becomes increasingly important that you acquire a portfolio of skills and experience that will give you an edge and help your career progression.
Evidence shows that it is the combination of academic study, work experience and leisure interests that help to develop the broad range of skills and competencies that employers seek. The Winchester Passport offers you a framework to help you to realise your potential in these areas and to gain recognition for many valuable activities that are not formally recognised through your degree programme.
What does it involve?
In order to be eligible to apply for the Winchester Passport you are required to gain a minimum of 100 points through taking part in various activities such as volunteering, enterprise activities, joining Student Union clubs and societies, work experience, internships, and part-time work.
It will not cost you any money to take the Passport but it will involve time and commitment in order to achieve it. You can take the Winchester Passport at any point during your studies at Winchester, but we recommend that you start work towards it in your first or second year. You’ll be able to find out more about the Winchester Passport during induction and at the Student Union Freshers Fayre.