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Employability

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Employability is about much more than simply getting a job after you finish your studies.

It is about your achievements, understanding and personal attributes - the things that will enable you to pursue whatever you choose to do both during, and after, your time at University—and be paid for it!

What will I learn on my Sociology course that will be useful in today’s job market?

Studying Sociology will provide you with an understanding as well as skills and sensitivities for creatively intervening in the world in ways that are valued by employers.

Sociology can be described as the study of society, how people interact with each other and the effects this has on the experience of life. It may include the study of how technologies are inherent to our daily life, to the making of the modern world and, with this, the global world. The discipline of Sociology embraces an almost endless range of topics, issues and practices, for instance: gender, gender inequalities, the concept of ‘the child’, media policy on censorship, sexuality, political processes, conceptions of ethics and agency, health and medical technologies and the manner in which they are challenging conceptions of the family, of kin relations, of life and death.

As a student you will learn topics such as culture, religion, the role of the visual and the aural in the work of culture, the nature of bureaucracy, the historical emergence of class differences, the possibilities afforded by cultural capital plus numerous other contemporary issues. To do so, you will be introduced to a broad array of thinkers that have helped shape the discipline of Sociology such as Karl Marx, Max Weber and more contemporary thinkers who continue to provide new theories and analytical tools including Michel Foucault, Bruno Latour and Judith Butler.

Studying Sociology at Goldsmiths will provide you with the ability to gather and evaluate evidence; explore the complexity and diversity of situations, including organisations themselves; collect information for your own research projects; make reasoned and logical arguments. Sociology students also develop a wider set of transferable skills like teamworking; verbal communication skills; showing initiative; being able to work in a way that is supportive of equality and diversity in the workplace, the ability for critical thought and analysis plus and skills in research, writing and presenting.

So, what can I do with a Sociology degree?

Sociologists enter careers that centre on the challenges and demands that members of a society face. This could be jobs in social services, education, criminal justice, welfare services, government, the voluntary sector, management, the creative industries, marketing and policy.

Students who achieve the best results during their undergraduate course may also get the chance to go on to postgraduate research for a higher degree with the aim of making a career in higher education either as a lecturer combining teaching with research or as a specialist researcher.

Where do Goldsmiths Sociologists work?

Over the last three years, some of the graduate level careers for Goldsmiths Sociology graduates have been:

  • Events co-ordinator
  • Grants officer
  • Housing and welfare officer
  • Learning support worker
  • Local Government graduate trainee
  • Marketing Manager
  • Personnel manager
  • Personnel officer
  • Public relations officer
  • Researcher
  • Social worker
  • Sustainability officer
  • Youth worker

Source: Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education

What careers support will I get?

Throughout your degree programme the University, and the Department offer a wide range of workshops, seminars and other learning opportunities focused on personal and professional development, employability and entrepreneurship.

We work closely with the University Careers Department who are part of the The Careers Group, University of London, the largest careers service in the country. The Careers service run dedicated workshops for Sociology students, offer a CV advice service and one to one appointments.

Other personal development opportunities include the Gold Award that can help you recognise and develop the skills that employers are looking for.

The University also has a dedicated Work Placements team connecting students and our academic departments with relevant companies and workplaces, to gain essential hands-on experience, and is forging contacts with Industry. The Department is now running a Work Placement module as part of the final year of the undergraduate degree. At the time of writing placements providers are Kids Company Charity, YourStory Charity and Treasure House.

Invaluable work experience can also be gained through the volunteering opportunities organised and supported by the Students’ Union. Plus workshop programmes offered by our Institute for Creative and Cultural Entrepreneurship, help to develop enterprise and entrepreneurial skills and encourage you to think creatively about your future.

What support will I get when looking for a job after graduating?

The careers service provides information and advice on most job sectors. Careers Consultants run workshops on learning the best ways to job hunt, writing effective applications and dealing with tough graduate job interviews. They are also available for one to one appointments. Their aim is to help you prepare for your career whilst you are at Goldsmiths so that you know the options and are in the best position to apply once you graduate.

Employer networking forums, enterprise boot camps and the London Graduate Fairs are just some of the things on offer.

Joining the Gradclub Scheme means you can use the service for up to two years after you finish your course.

Meet some of our graduates

Our students are an inspiring group of people from home and abroad, and are our best ambassadors. Read about our former students on what it is like to study with us.

Lastly keep in touch

Just because you may no longer be a student in the department, that doesn't mean we don't want to hear what you have been up to!

We regularly update our social networking sites with information on training, internships and job opportunities as well as departmental events and staff speaking engagements - so check us out, follow us, sign up...

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Lisa Cherry

Photo of Lisa Cherry
"Goldsmiths had a rawness about it assisted by its location in New Cross and the tension between being a somewhat grand building plonked in the middle of an area that has a complexity and vibrancy all of its own."

After an adolescence spent in foster homes and children’s homes, a two-year spell of homelessness, and entry into AA at the age of 20, Lisa Cherry studied for a Sociology degree at Goldsmiths, where she developed a lifelong passion for people, society and transformation that has led to her career in social work, education and social inclusion.

Lisa says:

"I applied to all sorts of places in a rather random fashion but I knew in my heart that I wanted to do . I visited all the various establishments but I fell in love with Goldsmiths.

My tutor at Goldsmiths was Paul Gilroy and my passion in Sociology was predominately around race, gender and politics so along with Paul Gilroy, tutors like Caroline Ramazanoglu and  were deeply important to me in helping me to explore my thinking and develop my own theoretical perspectives. My life experiences influenced me hugely in wanting to make a difference and work with people in distress in a more meaningful way and this led me on a career path in social work, education and social inclusion. What I truly learnt to value and love even more now that I work for myself, is how I can connect the theory with the practice, the personal with the professional, and the excluded with the included. We are all of it; not just some of it or one side of it. We are everything and nothing all at once.

The one thing that I wish I’d known back then as I reflect back 20 years would be that the purpose of it all is to find out what makes your heart sing and your belly burn like fire. Find out what that is and then find a way to make money doing it. I kind of did that by accident but I do wish that someone had told me that when I was younger and I might have been focused in what I was doing and not have taken myself quite so seriously all in one go!”