Accessibility statement

Career coaching

"I found the career coaching service so informative, helpful, accessible and student/graduate-focused." - Social and Political Sciences student

A career coach can support you as you plan your next steps whether you are applying for a graduate job or further study. It doesn’t matter where you are in relation to your planning, the coach can help you identify what it is you want to achieve and what you need to do to get there.

In addition to the support you can get from Careers and Placements, we are able to offer career coaching to some students and graduates, subject to certain eligibility requirements. If you think you might be interested, read on to find out more...

How can career coaching help me?

The purpose of coaching is to support you to achieve your personal and professional goals.

A career coach can help you identify the right role for you and help you make the transition into your new role. A coach can help you:

  • Establish your goals
  • Evaluate your situation
  • Explore options
  • Overcome perceived obstacles
  • Commit to actions

A coach offers unbiased, objective feedback tailored to your search and career goals specifically focussing on:

  • Self-awareness
  • Career decision making
  • Effective job search strategies
  • Interview practice

Career coaches don’t promise you’ll be hired after an interview, and they don’t guarantee job placement. Your coach is an ally who is familiar with your situation and dedicated to your success.

"The careers coaching was integral to me getting a job." - Mathematics student

What will I need to do?

A coach will provide you with tools and resources necessary to make you and your job search successful, but cannot do the work for you. It’s up to you to take what you learn in a session and put it into practice. This means being willing to put aside dedicated time to practise interview skills, for example. As with most things, you’ll get out what you put into the coaching relationship.

Your coach will have regular communication with you through Zoom or email to increase your future success and ensure momentum and consistency.

Make sure you attend your coaching sessions in an area where you can concentrate with minimal distraction and ensure that the allocated time is not interrupted.

What happens in a coaching session?

In your first coaching meeting, you will be asked what you want to achieve from career coaching.

You might be at the decision-making stage, and want to gain greater self-awareness and understand your skills, strengths, motivations and values, in order to make informed choices. The next step will be increasing your awareness of what careers are available and understanding the graduate job market.

Or you may be at the stage of making applications, and want to develop effective job search strategies and focus on improving your application skills. The careers coach can help you work on your CV and applications, and prepare for tests, assessment centres and interviews, so that you can sell yourself effectively and perform at your best. If you have a disability, your careers coach can help you think about talking to prospective employers to request any adjustments you might need in the recruitment process or when you start work.

Applying for jobs is hard work, and you may experience rejections before you secure the job you want. Over the course of your coaching calls, your coach can help you develop careers resilience to better cope with this.

What do other students and graduates say about coaching?

Students have told us that coaching has helped them with:

  • fantastic advice on CVs and applications
  • a better understanding of themselves and the direction they want to go
  • an awareness of different potential careers
  • feeling much more confident about finding and applying for jobs
  • preparing for interviews.

Watch graduates talking about their career coaching experience in our Youtube case studies.

96% said they'd recommend career coaching to other students, and many of our 2021 graduates have already got jobs! Read their stories to find out more:

  • Jordan (Social and Political Sciences)
  • Moise (Mathematics)
  • Tiffany (Electronic Engineering with Nanotechnology)
  • Busayo (Sociology with Criminology)
  • Max (Computer Science with Embedded Systems Engineering)

Am I eligible to apply?

Careers and Placements are offering careers coaching to final year students and graduates within 12 months of graduation, who are home students with one or more of these personal circumstances:

  • I have a disability or long term health condition
  • I am/was a mature student (21+ on the first day of undergraduate study at the University of York) 
  • I am a care leaver (meeting the student finance definition), care experienced (not meeting the student finance definition) or estranged from my family 
  • I have unpaid caring responsibilities for a parent, family member, partner or friend. I am/was a student parent 
  • I am from a military family (while I have been in education my parent(s) have served in the military) 
  • I identify as lesbian gay or bisexual 
  • My gender identity is different to that assigned to me at birth 
  • Neither of my parents attended university (or they went to university as a mature student during my secondary education)
  • I am from a Black, Asian or minority ethnic background (including Gypsy, Roma or Traveller backgrounds)


  • I am currently seeking asylum in the UK 
  • I have refugee status in the UK

If you don't meet any of these criteria, see What can I do now? for other ways you can get support.

I'm interested - what happens next?

Applications for career coaching from summer 2022 onwards are now open. Click on the button below to access the Career coaching interest form to register your interest in career coaching.

What can I do now?

Online resources

While you're waiting to start with career coaching, you could look at some of our web pages relevant to your situation:

Talk to us...

Don’t forget, whether or not you're eligible for coaching, you can still talk to us:

  • Come to a drop-in if you're on campus, 11am to 1pm in the Careers and Placements building, weekdays during term-time
  • Send us a message via Handshake
  • Book a first steps or careers advice appointment. Not sure which is best for you? Find out more about appointments.

If, having read all the above information, you feel you would benefit from career coaching, complete the expression of interest form by clicking on the link.

Career coaching interest form

"Whether you are not sure which career path you would like to take or have a specific job you are targeting, the career coach is a massive help!" - Mathematics student