Develop your skills and experience

University is the perfect time to develop and refine the skills you need to enhance your academic studies, and give you a head start on achieving your goals.

Improve your skills on EmployMe

Understand the skills you have and how to apply them in the workplace with EmployMe. Visit the platform to access our resources and see which skills industry professionals are looking for.

Learn more

The two main skill sets that you should aim to develop are:

  • Professional or technical skills: specific skills required by your field of interest, acquired through study and related work experience.
  • Employability skills: transferable skills common to all work roles and workplaces, acquired through study and work experience, but also through a range of work and other life experiences.

Assessing your employability skills

Employability skills are viewed by employers as important for success in the workplace.

Examples of employability skills include:

  • Interpersonal and communication skills (consistently rated as the most important)
  • Teamwork
  • Time-management
  • Initiative
  • Problem solving
  • Resilience.

Consider conducting a skills audit to assess your employability skills and how you can develop them further.

How can I improve my skills?

  • Find a mentor

    A mentor can expand your knowledge of the skills you need to develop in your field of interest and industry. Mentors can also help you explore future employment pathways after graduation, and help you get the most out of your study.

    If you’ve had a mentor in the past, you might also consider becoming a mentor to support others in your community or industry.

    Mentoring is an effective way to develop empathy, active listening, and rapport-building skills, which are relevant to a range of professional opportunities requiring interpersonal and communication skills.

  • Join a student club or network

    Extracurricular activities provide great entry-level skill development and networking opportunities, and many of them are on campus.

    Groups like the Student Peer Leader Network and student clubs can help you develop skills such as event organising, project management, teamwork, communication, leadership and more.

  • Apply to study overseas

    Studying overseas can be a life-changing experience—providing you with new insights into your preferences, choices and ideas about your future.

    Other benefits include gaining cross-cultural communication skills, greater cultural awareness, new connections, as well as skills in self-management, planning and resourcefulness.

    These skills all contribute to developing your ability to thrive in today's diverse global market. We offer a range of options if you’re interested in studying overseas.

  • Apply for an internship

    Internships are a great way to gain insights into an industry or a specific organisation while developing your professional network.

    They also provide an opportunity to demonstrate how you contribute to a workplace and may lead to an employment offer.

    Internships can help you develop critical technical or vocational skills that you can add to your resume and speak to in future interviews or applications.

  • Find a volunteering opportunity

    Volunteering is a chance to gain new skills and build your professional network in the industry of your choice. Volunteering roles are often diverse and will give you the opportunity to take on more responsibility than in an entry-level paid position.

    Before you choose a place to volunteer, it's good to learn about the organisation you’re interested in working with.

    • Find out what the organisation does: research website information, previous projects or annual reports to find out whether the organisation can offer the experience you’re looking for.
    • Assess whether they match your skills and interests and whether there’s opportunity to develop transferable and professional skills related to your area of interest.
    • Think about how much time you can commit to the position. Are you looking for a position that’s long term or short term, a one-off event or a continuing role?
    • Understand insurance: does the organisation have appropriate volunteer policies in place and insurance to cover you for the volunteer work you complete?

    Volunteering on campus

    Volunteering opportunities are available through a range of organisations on campus, including:

    Find out about opportunities in your industry or discipline by enquiring with your faculty.

    Volunteering off campus

    We regularly advertise specific volunteer positions on Careers Online. These positions are directly linked to potential employment pathways and usually require you to complete and submit a formal application to be considered.

    Get recognised for your work

    If you’re volunteering on or off campus, or want your experiences and activities added to your transcript, sign up for the Leaders in Communities Award (LiCA).

    To be eligible, volunteer during your degree for at least 40 hours with an external organisation or up to 20 hours for on campus volunteering.

    Enrol in LiCA or for more information visit the LiCA website.

    Volunteer rights and responsibilities

    Volunteering Australia outlines the basic rights of a volunteer, as well as providing a volunteer checklist.

  • Enrol in further study

    Many career paths require further study or additional certifications for entry level roles. Developing specific technical skills that are directly related to a potential role can be highly valued by employers and workplaces.

    Formally recognised qualifications offered by universities and other registered training providers can help you to develop your skills through study.

    Visit our further study page for more information.

Develop your skills with advice

If you’re looking for one-on-one support, access the Careers and Employability Studio for tailored advice from a careers adviser. We can help you improve the skills you need to build on your experience and area of study.

Learn more