Career and Personal Development

Newnham is a place where students are supported in developing all their skills and abilities. We run our own careers events and personal development programme, as well as taking part in the University’s many careers events.

We have a world-wide network of alumnae (former students) who support current undergraduates and graduates.

Individual Support from alumnae

The Newnham Associates are alumnae who offer their help to our current students. They run termly workshops (on topics such as presentation skills, CV preparation, interview practice and getting the most out of work placements), help arrange work placements and also offer individual advice.

They also offer networking opportunities, and contacts for those working or travelling abroad. Each Associate’s profile shows whether she is prepared to help by offering careers advice, vetting CVs, offering interviewing advice or offering work shadowing opportunities, but the types of help that Associates can give are by no means limited to these — for instance, they may be able to offer networking opportunities or contacts for people travelling abroad. If you think someone might be able to help you, just get in touch with her through the Associates’ directory.

Careers Workshops

The Newnham Associates hold regular workshops at Newnham for current students. They are often focused on aspects of career planning, job hunting or personal development. The workshops are usually held in June and November each year, but are occasionally held at other times. They are often focused on topics to do with careers, but also address personal development.

Careers Workshops take place during the academic year. They are publicised via email and on posters around College.

Study Skills Workshops

Arriving in Cambridge can be daunting – these sessions aim to help! Our study skills sessions, run in Michaelmas term, address topics such as ‘Managing time, money and workload’, ‘Understanding Cambridge and the supervision system’, and ‘Dissertation planning’.

Study skills workshops take place in Michaelmas term. They are publicised via email and on posters around College.

Life Skills Programme

The Life Skills Programme is an action-packed one-day programme for female students. Life is more than education, more than work – this programme will help you to develop the skills to balance all the different aspects of your life, both in college and beyond. It’s a chance to try something new, to hear from inspiring presenters and to meet people. From dealing with criticism and failure, to making your finances work for you, this one-day event covers the top skills that graduates say they wished they’d known before leaving Cambridge. Look out for details in Newnham News for the sessions which run at the start of Lent Term.

Careers Seminars

Newnham Careers Seminars offer insights from women at different stages of their career journey in a particular field. We hear from women who have reached the top of their profession, those who are starting out, and people who have taken different routes.

Presenters are often very frank about the challenges they have faced – this is an opportunity to get an insider’s view on jobs that intrigue you.

Careers Seminars take place each term. They are publicised on the website, via Newnham News, and on posters around College.

Women in Tech Challenge

Newnham College and the Wo+Men’s Leadership Centre at the University of Cambridge Judge Business School run the annual Women in Technology Challenge. This challenge offers a one-of-a-kind opportunity to work closely with senior executives from global technology companies, such as Microsoft, GSK and Amazon. Participants work in small groups to tackle real world challenges facing these companies.

The Women in Tech Challenge takes place in Michaelmas term. It is publicised via email and on posters around College.

Presentation Skills

Being able to present your ideas clearly and confidently is important throughout life. The Veronica Crichton Presentation Skills Course is an opportunity to develop your skills and increase your confidence.

The Presentation Skills Course takes place every year. Places are free, as they are sponsored by our alumnae. The course is publicised via emails and on posters around College.

Sprint – a personal development programme

The Sprint Programme is a personal development programme for women students, with workshops on a range of topics, including identifying your key values, and developing your confidence and assertiveness,

The Sprint Programme takes place every year. The course is publicised via emails and on posters around College. 

Alumnae networking lunches

Subjects, including medicine and law, regularly host networking lunches, bringing back former students to the college to meet with current students and offer informal advice on career opportunities and development. The Roll Office can also assist in putting former and current members of the college in contact.

Networking lunches will be publicised to relevant subject groups.

Career support grants

As part of our commitment to seeing our students embark on exciting careers, we offer the same level of funding for career-related summer travel or placements as we do for academic-related travel. This means that you can explore a career opportunity through an internship or volunteering with the benefit of some financial support. Newnham also has some funding for students moving into particular careers: legal training (both for solicitors, and very substantial funding for those heading for the Bar) and those entering medicine from a different first degree.