Careers Service

From the moment you begin your studies our Careers & Employability Team will encourage you to look ahead at launching the career you want. Your future aspirations are very much at the heart of what we do and we’re on-hand to support you. From your early days of transition from school to College, throughout your time at HSDC as well as beyond, we will give you the information you need when you need it.

What support will I have?

You will receive personalised support including one-to-one guidance and a range of events, trips and initiatives to help you on your way. We pride ourselves that whichever campus you are studying at, you will receive a consistent, first-class service from the Careers & Employability Team.  As a result, over the years we’ve helped thousands of students in your position achieve their goals, whether it be a place at a prestigious university, a competitive school leaver programme, apprenticeship or employment.

Our highly experienced team work according to the advice and frameworks put forward by the Careers Development Institute (CDI), which means you can be sure you’re receiving impartial advice and guidance throughout your time at college.  In addition, the Careers & Employability Team hold the Matrix quality standard, which reflects our professional and knowledgeable ethos.

  • Drop-in advice clinic at our Open Evenings
  • Information, advice and guidance at many of our feeder school events
  • Careers education programme embedded through tutorials, including employability skills
  • One-to-one careers guidance interviews
  • Drop-in clinics
  • Careers events, workshops and talks, including speakers from industry
  • Guidance on work experience and volunteering
  • Programme of support for applying to university, including studying abroad
  • Gap year advice
  • Support for CV writing and job applications
  • Apprenticeship and job search support
  • Publications and handouts to support you, available on paper and electronically
  • Interest area-specific blogs to keep students informed
  • Results day advice and guidance
  • Support for university applications
  • Support for CVs and job applications
  • E-guidance and phone guidance
  • Evening talks on Higher Education and Student Finance
  • Information for parents

Our Careers Advisers have shared some top tips below on making the right choices for some popular career pathways.


A Levels: Mathematics and Physics are key, together with Art or Design Technology. The RIBA recommends a mixture of Arts and Science subjects are studied.

Vocational: The Design, Surveying and Planning Construction T Level is a key route into this profession, alternatively a relevant Vocational course in Art or Engineering with high grades would be appropriate, although an A Level subject will often be required alongside (see above).


A Levels: The best combination would be an English A Level and two from a wide range of subjects from Humanities through to Arts, Social
Sciences or Sciences.

Vocational: Creative Media Production & Technology – Journalism & Digital Communications Level 3 Diploma.


A Levels: An essay-based subject such as English Literature or History, plus at least one other academic subject, is advisable for students
with strong academic potential. A Level Law is not required but is valued by universities and provides good insight into studying law as an undergraduate.

Vocational: Level 3 Applied Diploma in Psychology, Criminology & Law, Level 3 Extended Diploma in Business or Introductory Diploma in Business, with two of the above-suggested subjects will keep some options open to you.

Medicine/Veterinary Medicine

A Levels: Chemistry and Biology with either Mathematics or Physics will keep all medical schools open to you. Chemistry and Biology with another academically rigorous subject will keep most open to you.


A Levels: Biology and any two from Psychology, Sociology, Chemistry or Mathematics. GCSE Science (4+) will be needed.

Vocational: Level 3 BTEC Extended Diploma in Health & Social Care will keep some options open to you or a combination of Level 3 BTEC
Subsidiary Diploma in Applied Science with two accompanying A Level subjects such as Psychology and Sociology.

Police & Fire Service

A Levels: No essential subjects but useful subjects include Sociology, Psychology, Law or PE.

Vocational: Level 3 BTEC Extended Diploma in Public Services or BTEC Subsidiary Diploma in Public Services accompanied by two other subjects such as Criminology if a career in policing is intended.


A Levels: To keep options open, include at least one subject which is related to a primary/secondary national curriculum subject, for
example Art, English, Geography, History, Mathematics, Music, PE or a Science.

Vocational: The Education & Childcare T Level is perfect for students who know they want to specialise in Early Years (3-7 years), Primary or SEN teaching. GCSEs – it is essential that students pass (4+) GCSE English, Mathematics and Science to progress into primary teaching.

“The Careers Team is great…They’re so incredibly supportive.”

“The Careers Team is beyond amazing and always goes above-and-beyond to help me with frequent contact and updates.”

‘’A very supportive and knowledgeable team who offer the guidance to start you off on the path you wish to take. Last summer I undertook two weeks work experience, a placement that was publicised by the Careers Team, who then helped throughout the process to liaise with the employer ensuring I got the best experience possible. I believe my time at the placement will give me a greater advantage against other candidates. It is also good to know that they are there after my time at college, to support with any issues or problems I may have – including university places.’’

Examples of past students that have gone on to realise their aspirations include a BA pilot, an Antarctic survey research scientist, a TV producer and an England Hockey player.  So whatever you want to do in the future, this College is a proven springboard to success.

Need some help? Our advisors are here to help you

Contact us