Tracey Innes tells us about her role as Head of the Careers Service. 

Tell us about your role at the University.

My role as Head of Careers involves ensuring the Careers Service can continue to provide the best careers and employability support for our students and graduates.  The breadth of our services, and the diversity our students’ career aspirations, keeps us very busy!  In the 6 months since I started in this role, I have loved the variety of activities.  The last month has involved presenting a Civil Engineering Graduate Apprenticeship bid with a colleague in the School of Engineering, visiting our Qatar campus, contributing ideas towards the development of our Industrial Engagement Strategy and conducting speed interviews for students applying to the BP Student Tutoring Scheme.  

How do you usually start your day?

Once I know my two boys are up and will be ready for the school bus on time, I hit the traffic with a coffee in hand to get into work and catch up with colleagues.  I then get ready for whatever the day has in store.

What brought you to the University of Aberdeen?

I moved to Aberdeen a very long time ago to study my Masters in Soil Science.  After a year in industry and three years managing Joblink (now Studentjob Service) in the Students’ Union, I joined the University as a Careers Adviser in 2001.  The extensive opportunities to develop in my role, adapting to the continuously changing careers and employability sector priorities, has kept me here ever since!

What’s your favourite thing about your job?

Working in such an innovative and motivating team environment is hugely rewarding.  Our fantastic Careers Service team comprises 13 staff with a combined experience of 148 years!  Ultimately, it’s about the students - I still love nothing more than hearing about the career success of a student or graduate who we have helped along the way.   

What are your work priorities at the moment?

We are constantly seeking new ways of working to expand the reach of our services for students.   One of my priorities is to continue to build connections with colleagues across the Institution to combine our efforts in engaging students, particularly those in earlier years, and those who are so far unengaged, with the career and skills development opportunities available throughout their studies.  I am also passionate about using technology, where appropriate, to expand our reach and upscale our activities.  Having just returned from visiting our Qatar campus, we are looking at how technology can help us to ensure our services are appropriate and accessible to our students there.

How do you like to relax outside work?

Most people who know me will know that I love getting out in the fresh air and running marathons – the longer, slower and further away from the roads, the better.  It is the best excuse for getting some uninterrupted time away from the demands of a busy work and family life schedule.