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Discover the Turing scheme: the post-Brexit programme for study and work overseas

Find out what we know so far about the Turing scheme, which is set to start later this year, and the skills you’ll gain from studying or working abroad.

With a few questions left to be answered, such as the countries that will take part, we may not have cracked the Turing scheme to the extent that its eponym broke the Enigma code. However, below we share what we know so far from the information available – and we will continue to update this page as we find out more.

What we know about the Turing scheme

The replacement for the Erasmus+ programme (which enables students from EU countries to learn and get experience in other member states) is designed to enable UK students to study and undertake work placements abroad. So far, it’s clear that:

  • the scheme is set to start in September 2021
  • the new scheme will not be restricted to EU countries
  • it will be supported by over £100 million
  • funding will be provided for 35,000 students in universities, colleges and schools.

The government has also announced that the Turing scheme will be targeted towards students from disadvantaged backgrounds to a greater extent than the Erasmus+ programme, although it is not yet evident how this will be achieved.

Don’t forget other options for overseas study

The pandemic will have disrupted plans to travel in the near future. However, when this is once again possible, bear in mind that there are alternatives to the Turing scheme – such as opportunities that may be provided by your university and its partner institutions overseas. The University of York, for example, runs both year-long exchange programmes and short-term overseas courses during the summer at its various partner universities in North America, Asia and Australia.

The skills studying or working abroad will add to your CV

Spending time working or learning abroad will provide you with evidence of skills and qualities, which you can draw on for your CV and at interviews. These include:

  • Adaptability – by adjusting to a new environment and different group of students/colleagues.
  • Resilience – by overcoming any barriers to going overseas, or difficulties that you faced while you were there.
  • The ability to think independently – by deciding to spend a year abroad and making your own plans. This could go some way in demonstrating your potential to employers when it comes to making decisions, contributing ideas and leading others.
  • Communication – even if you are using your native language, communicating with people from a different country or culture will increase your awareness of how different styles of communication can be interpreted. This will enable you to adapt your communication style effectively to suit different audiences – a higher-level skill that graduate employers love to see in recruits.
  • Organisational skills – by planning your trip.
  • Willingness to travel – although you definitely won’t need to have studied or worked in another country to be considered for a position that includes trips abroad, this could demonstrate your flexibility with regards to location.

Cultural sensitivity, along with any language ability you have gained, could set you up well for an international company – or an employer that deals with clients overseas. It may also lead to you being based in another country or carrying out business trips abroad. However, appreciating and understanding different cultures is an important part of being able to work well with other people, and so will be useful for all job roles.

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