Undergraduate and postgraduate students from our tourism, hospitality, retail, sport development and sport studies courses were invited to take part in a mock graduate assessment provided by Capgemini.
Christina Hokland and Daza Roxana Garcia, who are on our Tourism and International Development MSc, report on the day:
We had the opportunity to meet three members of Capgemini´s team who, with staff at the University, helped us go through a mock assessment. During the session we worked in teams and also did an interview to learn more about our strengths and weaknesses.
In our first activity we got to test our ability in teamwork and how well we work as a group. We had to design a mobile app and had to follow instructions from the organisation. There were obstacles such as, time limits, changes of plans and requests that did not make sense in the context but in the end, we managed to complete our task.
We learned that there is no point in being quiet during a group assessment like this, the more qualities and skills you manage to show, all whom should be in favour for the job, is good. As a group there will always be different skills, and it is important to not let another take control over what you show.
During the second activity, a job interview, they sat us down and drilled us with questions. Some did not come as a surprise, others did. We learned to always come with examples during our interviews. We also learned to always use the STAR technique, situation, task, action and result. Such as, why it was successful to me, why people claim I am like that, and why that is my strength.
We also learned to always prepare ourself for certain questions and to make sure we don’t fall into their hidden “holes” that are meant to make you answer the wrong way, and to always get information on the company, to show that you are interested in the company.
Finally, in the last activity we were given the following situation: our boat in the middle of the ocean was burning and we had to choose 15 objects to bring with us. Our assignment was to first, individually rate the items in regards of how important we thought they were when we had to escape. We then had 10 minutes to come together and rate the items as a group in how we all collectively thought of the importance.
What we learned was that as we all have different values in life, we all have different priorities. In a situation like this it is important to always ask questions such as “why” and “how” to get more information on why someone might have a different view than you. As a team you will not always agree on everything, but it is important to hear others ideas out and to compromise where it allows. We also learned that it is important to finish the task that you are given and to manage your time well.
Rebecca Duffy, Employer Engagement Officer, at the University of Brighton who helped set up the day said: “It was great to see students taking advantage of the opportunity to meet employers from global IT consultancy Capgemini.
“The employability benefits of experiencing how an assessment centre works, and getting feedback on performance and strengths, are invaluable for our students.”
To sum up, we really enjoyed our time during the Mock Assessment and we discovered many professional aspects we should work in. We recommend anyone who have the opportunity to join this activity, as it is very useful for your future career and job application.
Adam Jones Principal Lecture praised the students who took part and said “this is a great opportunity to identify both strengths and weaknesses and how their studies on the SM719 Professional Development module can really help them achieve their career aspirations.