Creative focus for fifth anniversary of Grads4Nottm scheme

More than 100 Nottingham Trent University (NTU) students will spend two weeks solving 36 real-life challenges from local businesses to gain valuable work experience and promote Nottingham as a destination for graduates.

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Graduates in 2019

Running from 10 - 21 June, the Grads4Nottm initiative aims to boost graduate retention by raising awareness of the range of businesses and types of jobs available in the area. It also gives local employers the opportunity to showcase their organisations to students and connect them with the pool of talent at NTU.

This year the scheme is celebrating its fifth anniversary – having seen 439 students work on 169  challenges within 136 Nottingham businesses since its inception.

For 2019, Grads4Nottm will have a ‘creator’ focus, meaning that this year’s challenges will all have an element of creative-thinking and the students will work primarily with creative businesses. Challenges are advertised anonymously, taking away any brand bias and putting all employers on an even playing field. Students and graduates from all courses are then matched to challenges that are best suited to their skills.

Organisations taking part include the NHS, Boots and Refinitiv, along with SMEs such as Print 4, Hickman & James and Studio Seventeen.

The students will work on their challenges at the various businesses across Nottingham before coming together at the University to celebrate their achievements.

Lucy Moore, Nottingham Trent University Business Services Consultant said: “Grads4Nottm is widely recognised by everyone who takes part as a valuable scheme. It brings employers of all sizes and industries together with students of all backgrounds and supports keeping local talent in Nottingham. We have a growing and diverse small to medium enterprise (SME) network in Nottingham, which is recognised as the largest recruiter of graduate talent in the region. Despite this, many students may not have thought about joining an SME when they graduate, and this project can help them to see the potential benefits of working for a smaller business.”

Commenting on last year’s projects, Steph Gibbs, manager of The Bead Shop in Nottingham city centre, said: “Students were really competent and full of enthusiasm. They took feedback and guidance on board and have left us with valuable work that we’ll be able to use in the future.”

Nick Wright, Director at Esper HQ, added: “‘We were very impressed with the Grads4Nottm project. We were extremely happy with the focus, insights and direction provided from all graduates working with us and were delighted to offer a permanent position to one of the graduates at the conclusion of the scheme.”

  • Notes for editors

    Notes to editors 

    Press enquiries please contact Helen Breese, Media Relations Manager, on telephone +44 (0)115 848 8751, or via email

    Event Details

    Dates: 10th-21st June 2019

    Employer Kick Off Event: Thursday 6th June, 5pm-7pm, Revs de Cuba, Nottingham

    Launch Event: Monday 10th June- Newton Building, City Campus

    Celebration: Event: Friday 21st June- Newton Building, City Campus

    About Nottingham Trent University

    Nottingham Trent University (NTU) was named University of the Year 2019 in the Guardian University Awards. The award was based on performance and improvement in the Guardian University Guide, retention of students from low-participation areas and attainment of BME students. NTU was also the Times Higher Education University of the Year 2017, and The Times and Sunday Times Modern University of the Year 2018. These awards recognise NTU for its high levels of student satisfaction, its quality of teaching, its engagement with employers, and its overall student experience.

    The university has been rated Gold in the Government’s Teaching Excellence Framework – the highest ranking available.

    It is one of the largest UK universities. With nearly 32,000 students and more than 4,000 staff located across four campuses, the University contributes £900m to the UK economy every year. With an international student population of more than 3,000 from around 100 countries, the University prides itself on its global outlook

    The university is passionate about creating opportunities and its extensive outreach programme is designed to enable NTU to be a vehicle for social mobility. NTU is among the UK’s top five recruiters of students from disadvantaged backgrounds. A total of 82% of its graduates go on to graduate entry employment or graduate entry education or training within six months of leaving. Student satisfaction is high: NTU achieved an 88% satisfaction score in the 2018 National Student Survey.

    NTU is also one of the UK’s most environmentally friendly universities, containing some of the sector’s most inspiring and efficient award-winning buildings.

    NTU is home to world-class research, and won The Queen’s Anniversary Prize in 2015 – the highest national honour for a UK university. It recognised the University’s pioneering projects to improve weapons and explosives detection in luggage; enable safer production of powdered infant formula; and combat food fraud.

Creative focus for fifth anniversary of Grads4Nottm scheme

Published on 4 June 2019
  • Category: Press office; Nottingham Business School

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