Employability, Further Study and Work Experience for Disabled Students and Graduates

Employers are becoming increasingly more positive about employing disabled graduates. This is because organisations recognise that employing disabled people within the workforce has many benefits, including:

  • Offering more choice in recruitment
  • Bringing different life experiences, expertise and skills to the organisation
  • Enabling employers to identify positive changes, which will benefit other staff as well as employees with disabilities and health conditions

Resources for job hunting, employment and disclosure

  • TargetJobs Events - provides information on recruitment events. Some events are specifically focused on minority groups
  • Employ-ability - advice and opportunities for disabled students and graduates
  • Remploy Ltd - Remploy creates economic independence for disabled people through work. Remploy finds jobs for disabled people in major organisations.
  • Shaw Trust - Shaw Trust is a national charity that provides training and work opportunities for people who are disadvantaged in the labour market due to disability, ill health or other social circumstances. We are the largest UK provider of employment services for disabled people.
  • Scope Employment Service - Provides support for people with disabilities to gain employment.
  • Association of Disabled People - ADP is a membership organisation for disabled people living in the UK. Its services include the provision of employment advice, information and/or peer support.
  • The National Autistic Society: Support for employment pages gives information on looking for work, in work & information for students.
  • Disclosing Your Disability - This Skill information sheet is very useful, as it contains information on understanding the DDA, confidentiality, reasons for and against disclosure, timing a disclosure, answering questions about your disability, and some good further information.

Equal opportunities advice

These websites will give you further information, advice and key pointers for further action.

  • Jobcentre Plus - This site has a guide to the ways the Jobcentre can help you to get into work. You will also find information on the Disability Symbol which employers who have made commitments regarding the employment, retention, training and career development of disabled people use.
  • Skill - National Bureau for Students with Disability - They provide a free information and advice service by email or telephone, there is also lots of information relating to employment on their website.

Postgraduate study for disabled students and graduates

The best time to undertake postgraduate study will depend on your individual circumstances and goals. You can undertake further study full time, part time and, increasingly, through distance learning. Study can be undertaken straight after a degree, after a year out, or many years later.

For more information, see the Graduate Prospects website.

Useful websites

These websites will give you further information, advice and key pointers for further action.

  • Student Finance England - Information from the Department for Education and skills on the Disabled Students Allowance.
  • Skill - Skill is the National Bureau for Students with Disabilities, and it is a charity that promotes opportunities for people with any kind of disability in learning and employment. Skill provides a free information and advice service for disabled people via a freephone helpline, email and their website.

Further resources

  • Postgraduate education for disabled students - useful information for choosing and applying for a postgraduate course, funding for disability-related costs, postgraduate professional qualifications, regional funding, research council and other public funding, how to find other sources of funding.
  • Applying for Disabled Students' Allowances - This handout is useful for information on who is eligible for DSAs, which courses are designated for DSAs, DSA components (including specialist equipment allowance, non-medical helpers allowance, general/other expenditure allowance and travel costs), DSA amounts, applying for DSAs, other funding and some other helpful sources of information.
  • Bridging the Gap: a guide to the Disabled Student's Allowances (DSAs) in higher education - This very useful AimHigher handout is useful for information on DSAs, eligibility, disclosure, applying, payments, assessments of need, equipment distribution, repaying DSAs, course transfers, what to do if your application is turned down and what other financial support is available.
  • Funding from charitable trusts - This handout from Skill is useful for information on trust criteria, and things to do before you apply and when you apply. It also contains information on trusts that help disabled students specifically, those that do so as well as other people, those that help women in education, those that help students doing specific courses (including postgraduate courses) and trusts that help students living or studying in certain regions or establishments.

Work Experience 

Resources

  • TargetJobs
  • Do-It - The Do-it website is a brilliant source of information on volunteering. There is a section of advice for disabled volunteers and you can search for opportunities and find details of your local Volunteer Centre.
  • BBC Extend Scheme - Extend is a BBC-wide work placement scheme which offers appropriately qualified disabled people a great opportunity to gain paid work placement
  • Civil Service - Fast Track Apprenticeship
  • Skill - Skill is the National Bureau for Students with Disabilities. They provide a free information and advice service by email or telephone, there is also lots of information relating to employment on their website.