How to structure the position
There are different ways to structure a position. Choose how you engage your student on the basis of what you want to achieve. Each organisation will have different requirements:
- You may only require help for a specific project
- You may require a student on a full-time basis
- You may require a casual vacancy to be filled
- You may be in the position to offer the student permanent work after they graduate
- You may be able to offer a work-integrated learning (WIL) internship project first and then offer some paid work
Keep in mind that 10-15 hours a week is manageable for a full-time student during term time. They may decide to take on more hours over holiday periods.
1. Part-time employment
Paid part-time employment is a good option for engaging a student while they complete their degree, especially if there is the possibility of full-time permanent work after they graduate.
2. Graduate employment
Graduate positions are generally entry-level roles that are permanent full-time positions that are offered to students who are about to finish or have just finished a university degree.
- Organisations are expected to provide a full induction and supervision, and the graduate becomes a full member of staff from their first day of employment.
- If you are interested in developing a graduate job with your organisation, contact NZUni Talent.
3. Casual employment
Casual employment is an excellent option for work that is available at irregular times or durations, or for work that isn't permanent. If a job needs to be done at short notice, a casual employee provides a flexible option for many employers.
- Casual employees are often contacted regularly by their employers to arrange working times from week to week. As there is no expectation in a casual work contract between employee and employer of ongoing work, employees can legally refuse a specific work opportunity at any time.
For more help or to advertise a study-related casual role please visit these websites:
4. Volunteer work
UC Careers works with other areas within the university that can assist with sourcing a suitable student if your opportunity is unpaid. If your internship can fit a programme of study that offers work-integrated learning, then yes, we can assist with sourcing a potential candidate or candidates for you. If the opportunity does not fit, then we are not able to assist with promotion on our job platform NZUni Talent.
We ask our employers to look to pay a living wage if they can otherwise minimum wage depending on the level of study and expertise you are looking for.
If we are not able to source a suitable student for you for an unpaid work opportunity through other channels here at UC, and your organisation is not a registered Not for Profit or Charitable organisation, the University of Canterbury is not able to assist with promotion via the NZUni Talent jobs board.
5. Work-integrated learning
UC partners with companies, organisations and professionals to engage a student for a work placement, professional experience or industry project.
The university assesses the students in the workplace as part of their formal study along with the workplace supervisor.
WIL occurs where students learn both formally and through practical experience in the industry. The workplace or practical experience takes a variety of forms but is often a placement in industry, community, government or professional practice.
Key considerations for this type of placement are:
- The student does not get paid.
- The project/job has to fit within the requirements of the course the student is studying.
- The placement has a set timeframe of when the work starts and finishes (often during a semester).
- The work is assessed by an academic supervisor and the student receives a grade for it.
There are legal requirements that need to be considered and adhered to whenever a new employee is engaged.
See the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment website for information about health and safety, employment relations, immigration and the labour market.
Prepare to engage a student
Preparation is vital for both you and your students. Our resources take you through questions that will help you define your objectives and make sure you've thought of the resources, time and information you'll need to provide.
The most important thing is for you to have a clear idea of what you want your student to do and the logistics of how they are going to work within your organisation.
A well-organised placement can help a student develop their professional skills, increase their confidence, and enable them to see your organisation at its best.
But a lack of preparation can create a negative experience for both you and your student, so to ensure the best experience for everyone there are several questions that you need to ask yourself.