Fiona talks about her experience as part of the Leeds City Council graduate scheme…

Leeds City council have always recruited graduates mainly through the Local government National Graduate Development programme. However last year we set up our own scheme taking on ten graduates of which five were from the University of Leeds. In 2013 we are hoping to take on fifteen to twenty graduates.
The graduate scheme is run by the Children’s services directorate but recruits graduates to all areas of the council. To get up to date information on the programme, send your name, course details and university to graduateprogramme@leeds.gov.uk

Fiona, a graduate employed by Leeds City Council under the Graduate Scheme for 2012-13, talks about her experience of the scheme so far and what it’s like to work for the council!

After graduating from Leeds Metropolitan University in 2012 with a degree in English Literature, I like many of my classmates wasn’t sure what to do next. I did however know that I wanted to stay in Leeds.
When an opportunity for a ‘graduate scheme’ came up on the Leeds City Council website, I knew that I would have to apply.

The great thing about the application process was the enthusiasm of the staff, the encouragement that this graduate scheme was for local people and that you would learn about council values and policies.
I was lucky enough to be a successful applicant and as part of the graduate scheme am now placed in Children’s services, with the Family Information Service.

My main role is a Project Support Officer, and I am helping with Free Early Education Entitlement. This is the delivery of childcare to 3 and 4 year olds in Leeds.

As well as this, another part of the wider graduate scheme is that my fellow graduates and I are also project managing some cross-council projects. The project I have been assigned to is the Digital Divide, looking at the gaps in IT access for front-line staff.

The great thing about working for a council is the diversity of roles and responsibilities, as well as the close involvement with the city. It is also very up to the minute; for example, a news story being released can affect how your day will take shape.

I am incredibly pleased to be a part of the Leeds City Council graduate scheme and would encourage people to look into the council as a career option.

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