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Manchester University offers access to 'alternative' career opportunities

05 Feb 2007

Thousands of students and graduates are expected to flock to The University of Manchester on Thursday 1 March for the annual Kaleidoscope Fair, to find out about a wide range of career options and volunteering opportunities across the public and voluntary sectors.

Now in its tenth year, Kaleidoscope is an established, popular event which aims to help the growing number of students seeking a way into 'alternative' careers outside the corporate arena.

Lisa Maycroft from the Manchester Leadership Programme, Careers & Employability Division at The University of Manchester, which organises the Fair, said: "While corporate graduate recruitment schemes provide a straightforward access point for students and graduates into employment, entry into the voluntary sector is often less obvious.

"The Kaleidoscope Fair gives students and graduates from across the UK a fantastic opportunity to network and gather information from experienced professionals to help them plan successful careers in the voluntary and public sectors, and perhaps source some useful volunteering experience on the way."

Around 60 exhibitors are expected to attend, including representatives from Barnardo's; BUNAC; Cancer Research UK; Environment Agency; Government Social Research Service; Greater Manchester Police; Groundwork Oldham & Rochdale; Teach First and Volunteers for English in Sri Lanka (VESL).

Hazel Egan, Special Projects Officer at Groundwork Oldham & Rochdale, said: "The Kaleidoscope Fair is a great way to encourage students to look at different career opportunities that are available, and for us to promote the benefits of volunteering."

Students seeking more corporate careers could still benefit from investigating volunteering opportunities that could boost their practical skills development. Gary Kernahan, Community Fundraiser with Cancer Research UK, said: "Volunteering for a charity offers students the opportunity to develop skills and gain experience that will be invaluable when seeking employment after graduation. It can also be a lot of fun."

Kaleidoscope runs between 10.30am and 3.30pm at the Sugden Centre, Grosvenor Street, The University of Manchester. The Fair is sponsored by The Independent. Further information, including an up-to-date list of exhibitors, is available online at

Notes to Editors
1. Lisa Maycroft, Employer Liaison Manager at the Manchester Leadership Programme, Careers & Employability Division, The University of Manchester, is available for interview on request.

2. Exhibitors at this year's event include: African and Caribbean Mental Health Services; Africatrust Networks; ATD Fourth World; Barnardo's; Bolton Lads and Girls Club; BUNAC; Bury Autism Befrienders; Camp America; Camp Leaders; Cancer Research UK; CCUSA; Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP); Christian Aid; CIPFA; Creative Support; Development in Action; DialogueDirect Ltd; Education Excellence Supply Agency; EF English First; Environment Agency; Frontier; Gap Sports; Graduate Prospects; Greater Manchester Millenium Volunteers; Henshaws Society for Blind People; Manchester Mencap; National Probation Service Greater Manchester; North West College of Homeopathy; North West Employers; Pyramid; Raleigh International; School of Environment and Development, The University of Manchester; St John's Ambulance; Stockport NHS Foundation Trust; Students Partnership Worldwide; Teach First; Teaching and projects Abroad; Together Trust; Vision Twentyone, and Volunteers for English in Sri Lanka (VESL). A full list of exhibitors is kept up-to-date at:

3. The Manchester Leadership Programme, Careers & Employability Division at The University of Manchester is committed to improving the employability of its students and graduates. It works with graduate recruiters across the globe to develop and manage a variety of projects and events, all dedicated to equipping students with key career management skills and knowledge vital for future success. For further information visit:

Lisa Maycroft, Employer Liaison Manager
MLP, Careers & Employability Division, The University of Manchester
0161 275 2828 /

Rowena Forbes, Marketing & Communications Executive
MLP, Careers & Employability Division, The University of Manchester
0161 275 2828 /