Borders College

Work Placements

What is a work placement?
A work placement is when an employer takes on an unpaid member of staff to work for their company over a set period of time. The student/students would be studying for a qualification relating to the industry in which the employer operates.

Many Borders College students are required to undertake a work placement as part of their studies. For employers, work placements can be a simple and easy solution to manage busy periods – increasing productivity at no cost. It also allows employers the opportunity to raise the skill level of young people and adults, contributing to their current education and improving their future employability.

The College’s creative and motivated students can really add value to a business, particularly in the current challenging times. Participating in the placement programme can raise an organisations profile amongst the local community – demonstrating you are a caring employer. In addition it can also be of benefit to your existing employees, giving staff the chance to develop their skills in supervisory, support and training roles.

The time and duration of each placement varies from course to course but can often be negotiated to meet the needs of the business.

At present the college offer placements in the areas of:

  • Business, Administration & Tourism
  • Horticulture / Landscaping
  • Care & Childcare
  • Horse Care/ Animal Care
  • Carpentry & Joinery
  • Gamekeeping
  • Painting & Decorating
  • Hairdressing/ Beauty Therapy
  • Brickwork
  • Catering and Hospitality
  • Plumbing
  • Sport
  • Motor Vehicle/ Rural Mechanics
  • Retail
  • Agriculture

In turn, employers that offer work placements have a number of responsibilities to ensure those involved get the best from this opportunity. Before embarking on a Work Placement programme, employers must be able to:

  • Provide meaningful work
  • Prior to the placement, set time aside to meet with the student and establish their suitability to fit in with you and your team
  • Be prepared to commit resources, i.e. staff and time, to train, supervise and mentor the work placement student throughout their stay
  • Provide an induction for all students on their first day
  • Conduct a pre-placement check with a member of the work placement department in relation to the health & safety provided by you as an employer and the safeguarding of our students.
  • Allow time for a member of College staff to visit to carry out a mid-placement review.

For further information about work placements contact Verity Hislop, Work Placement Co-ordinator - Tel: 08700 505152 or email