Expand your skills beyond your studies

Take things a degree further

You come to university to study. But what else can you do to set yourself apart from the rest when it comes to applying for jobs later?

Oxford Brookes offers a range of opportunities beyond your studies to gain experience and develop new skills. The kind of skills potential employers are looking for. And it’s not just about boosting your employability. You’ll learn a lot about yourself and where your talents lie, as well as enriching your experience at university.

Take a look at what you can do to add value to your degree and, hopefully, enjoy yourself at the same time.

Business or Social Entrepreneurship

Got a great idea but want some help? Gain practical career skills by making your own commercial or community project happen - there’s plenty of support on hand at Oxford Brookes.

Do you mean business?

Find out how to get your innovative business venture off the ground with the Oxford Brookes Entrepreneurship Programme.

It’s how this successful company kicked off:

Developing products for the 21st century

“Even after I left university, I kept in touch and got advice and support from the Brookes business development team.”

Josh Shires came up with his idea for the Musicase – a sleek iPhone case that will stop you from losing or tangling your headphones ever again – together with fellow entrepreneur James Griffiths whilst studying at Brookes. Together they formed Mous to bring this product to the world.

"At the start of my journey many people said to me ‘no one will buy that’, ‘no one will invest in that’ and many more negative comments. If I'd listened to them, I would have never achieved what I have. Instead I followed my gut feeling.

But, it can be a hard balance to get right. No one will see the vision you have and you have to stay resilient and strong. Sometimes though, people are right, and you need to know when to pivot and change direction.

The Brookes voluntary entrepreneurial class helped me to find that balance.

I received help with my business plan and, even after I left the university, I kept in touch and got advice and support.”

Josh Shires studied Mechanical Engineering BSc

Keeping it Social?

For more on how you can make a difference while at Oxford Brookes, and other sources of funding if you’ve got an idea for a project, visit our Social Responsibility web pages.

Students working together on technical project


Volunteering is a great way to make a difference while exploring new directions.

For some people volunteering can be a direct route into their ideal career – for others it helps develop new or existing skills. Either way, it will add valuable experience to your CV.

Oxford Brookes Careers helps students at Oxford Brookes find opportunities with a variety of local and international organisations.

And Brookes Hub is a student-led group offering practical volunteering, skilled placements, project incubation and events to help you shape a better world and community in Oxford.

Why volunteer?

  • Try something new
  • Develop real-world skills
  • Enhance your CV
  • Make a difference
Brookes ID logo


Launched in September 2017, Brookes ID spurs you on to try new activities and build skills far broader than your studies. Your extra and co-curricular activities are rewarded with ‘achievements’ which add up to either a gold, silver or bronze award. 

There are plenty of activities on offer, including:

  • cultivating new skills and interests
  • volunteering
  • playing in a University sports team
  • developing a new idea for business or the community

Once you graduate, you’ll receive a certificate which can be used as evidence of your achievements for future employers.

Become a student ambassador

Student ambassadors represent Oxford Brookes, both on and off campus. It’s a great job with flexible hours and competitive rates of pay as well as a lovely green Brookes polo shirt. But it’s also a way of meeting people, developing team-working skills, building your confidence and adding to your CV.

Meet Yunchuan Liu from China

I work with the International Marketing Team creating, translating and posting content for Oxford Brookes’ Weibo site. Weibo is a Chinese version of Twitter mixed with Facebook. This project is an amazing opportunity for me to bring my passion for the university and the course to the Chinese market. Working with the International Team has also enabled me to gain experience in a UK business environment, developing people and marketing skills in English. I am broadening my skill set whilst increasing my knowledge and understanding of the workplace from a different perspective.

I also act as a translator for high profile events. I recently accompanied a Chinese delegation on a tour of the Mini factory at Oxford. I love the exposure this gives me to international business and industry connections. My time at Oxford Brookes is about so much more than just my course.

Yunchuan Liu from China


We know how important employability is when it comes to choosing your university. Find out more about:

  • Oxford Brookes’ links with industry
  • our career-based courses
  • work placements
  • mentoring
  • studying and working abroad
  • Oxford Brookes careers service

Find a course