How I adapted to learning at university and developed my skills


During your studies at university, only you decide how you will use this time – doing only studies, or putting some efforts into doing additional learning, training, volunteering or working. The hard work done from the heart will always pay off in the end.

Before starting university, I said to myself I am going to use every opportunity I will have and try to develop myself as much as possible. Hallam is a great place for that. It gives you various opportunities and support, and only you decide if you need it or not. Below is my personal experience, what I took from the University’s support and what I gained.

1.Hallam’s Careers services

The Career Centre was one of the biggest surprises in Hallam for me. I never saw any other university prioritising the employability of its graduates and running so many programmes and activities for that. You can make an appointment with a careers advisor, take part in the programmes they run, attend jobs fairs and many more. The Careers Centre have a great hub of resources, templates, video tutorials and other materials to prepare yourself, search for a job and secure a workplace. Thanks to Hallam’s career advisors I learnt how to write a proper CV and a cover letter, and how to prepare for an interview. I realised that all my work experience counts, I just need to present it in the right way. Here is a bonus – as a Hallam graduate, I will always be able to use the Careers Centre services.

  1. The Skills Centre

girl studying

Using the Skills Centre definitely improved my writing skills. I finally understand what a literature review is, how to make a reference list, how to write a report and an essay, how to structure my assignments and how to prepare a better presentation.

  1. The University English Scheme

This scheme is ideal for international students. At every session, we learn reading, listening, writing or speaking – it improves your academic English (if you are also putting an effort in it). After taking part in this scheme, I started feeling more confident in using academic English. Another plus is that you can make an appointment with a language advisor, who is also able to support you and consult.

4.GoGlobal projects

Honestly speaking, I am strongly in love with everything the International Experience Team does. Thanks to Conversation Club, Global Citizenship Portfolio, GoGlobal Challenge and the Culture Connect Scheme I became such a better, tolerant and more culturally aware person.  Hallam itself is a big diverse environment, so learning how to work and exist in an international environment once and forever became one of my favourite things to learn.

5.The Coach Academy

In the Coach Academy you can pick up an organisation within a sports and physical activity sector and start volunteering. Don’t worry if you do not have any specific degree or experience – you will learn everything on the way. I enrolled into the Coach Academy and was volunteering for Goalball UK and got good experience out of it (

And as a bonus – the Hallam Award.

Don’t forget to evaluate all your skills and attributes you are gaining, by applying for the Hallam Award. This award recognises new skills you learnt and improved through taking part in various extracurricular activities. It is also a good reflection for you to see how much you’ve improved, what is left to do and how far you can go. Due to my active participation and a desire never to stop learning, I earned my Golden Hallam Award, and this motivates me to move forward.

Written by #HallamInsider Zhanna Tlegenova