Your combination of practical and academic skills makes you the ideal candidate for a wide range of jobs in youth and community work
Jobs directly related to your degree include:
- Advice worker
- Community development worker
- Community education officer
- Probation officer
- Social worker
- Youth worker
Jobs where your degree would be useful include:
- Adult guidance worker
- Careers adviser
- Learning mentor
- Outdoor activities/education manager
- Secondary school teacher
- Volunteer coordinator
Remember that many employers accept applications from graduates with any degree subject, so don't restrict your thinking to the jobs listed here.
Work experience, whether paid or voluntary, will increase your skills and make you more attractive to employers. It is particularly important if you want to work in an advisory or social care role, or if you are considering teaching. Try to get involved in your local community and build up some experience. When looking for opportunities, highlight any sport, language or performing arts skills you have.
Take advantage of work placements offered on degree courses, both in the UK and abroad, to build up your skills and knowledge. Placements may take place in youth or community centres, schools and colleges and can include work with groups such as young offenders.
Contact your local youth service (local authority in Scotland) or voluntary bodies to arrange voluntary or part-time sessional work. Valuable experience can also be gained by working or volunteering at summer play schemes, youth clubs, summer camps or through tutoring or mentoring.
For classroom experience, contact local schools to arrange visits to observe teachers or help with non-teaching duties.
Search for placements and find out more about work experience and internships.
Employers of graduates in youth and community work include local authority youth services, education departments, voluntary organisations, churches and other community-based groups.
- youth work;
- community work;
- youth justice;
- drugs services;
- welfare rights;
- trainee probation.
Many jobs are project based, such as anti-poverty initiatives, education, homelessness, drugs projects, sexual health initiatives, advisory work, community arts, and community regeneration projects.
Skills for your CV
Many courses combine practical and theoretical skills where your knowledge is tested in real youth and community situations. A youth and community work degree develops transferable skills that you can apply in a range of positions and sectors, such as:
- problem-solving, developed by integrating theory and practice;
- empathy, commitment to equality and being non-judgmental;
- presentation skills, oral and written communication skills;
- management, supervision and organisational skills;
- ability to work independently and to deadlines;
- fundraising and advocacy skills;
- teamworking skills and the ability to work with people from all backgrounds.
Some new graduates choose to move on to postgraduate study in a subject from their degree that they would like to develop further, for example a research-based Masters degree or a PhD in education or community/youth studies. MA courses for qualified youth and community workers are also available.
Other graduates choose to take a vocational course that is relevant to the area in which they want to work, for example the Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE), or Professional Graduate Diploma in Education (PGDE) in Scotland, which qualify you to work as a teacher.
If your undergraduate degree was not validated by the National Youth Agency (NYA) and you want to work as a qualified youth worker in England, you could take a recognised postgraduate qualification.
What do youth and community work graduates do?
More than a third of graduates employed in the UK are working as youth and community workers.
More than 14% of graduates go on to further study, often combining further study with work in order to gain experience on the job.
|Working and studying||7.5|
|Type of work||Percentage|
|Legal, social and welfare||50.9|
|Childcare, health and education work||16.6|
|Retail, catering and bar work||5.7|
Find out what other graduates are doing six months after finishing their degrees in What Do Graduates Do?
Graduate destinations data from the Higher Education Statistics Agency.