Horizon Fund Employability Award terms and conditions

About the Horizon Fund

The Horizon Fund receives donations from alumni, staff, former staff, and friends of Staffordshire University to provide income which can be utilised to meet key Staffordshire University employability priorities.

Decisions on how the money is allocated

Decisions about how funds will be allocated are made by Staffordshire University’s Head of Development and Alumni Relations in conjunction with the Student and Graduate Employability team at the University.

Types of project that will be considered for funding

Projects or activities submitted for consideration should:

  1. Be aligned to the Staffordshire University values.
  2. Advance Staffordshire University’s reputation to stakeholders and the broader community.
  3. Offer the widest possible benefit, whether to students and academic departments of Staffordshire University or the broader community.
  4. Be submitted and carried out by an active student of Staffordshire University.

Further details about projects are included (but not limited to) within the Employability award funding are outlined below:

  • Work shadowing – working in conjunction with an employability coach the candidate will be paired with a relevant business to attend work shadowing to gain experience within a chosen field. Candidates for this funding will receive up to a maximum of £40 transport cost for a work shadowing placement.
  • Work placement – during year 2 of study current students will be identifying opportunities for their work placement. Working in conjunction with an employability coach the candidate must demonstrate that each task outlined has been completed to enable the best possible placement.
  • Graduate employability - working in conjunction with an employability coach the candidate must demonstrate that each task outlined has been completed to enable the best chances of successful graduate level employment.
  • Research – working with researchers at Staffordshire University, the candidate can receive support to elevate their research and its impact.
  • Travel - travel will be considered for a student applying for attendance at a trip, temporary employability enhancement opportunity or conference. This can only be awarded twice to a student within a 12-month period.
  • Once in a lifetime - if you have been offered a once in a lifetime trip or opportunity, that will help propel your employability prospects. Candidates for this funding will need to outline the opportunity, and explain in detail, how this would enhance their employability.
  • Clothing - in circumstances where a student is applying for assistance with an outfit for an interview, a maximum of £100 can be requested, and this can only be submitted once. No further claims for clothing would be considered.

The Employability Award will support students in securing work-related opportunities that enhance their employment or employability. Support will primarily relate to the cost of travel to interview but will be reviewed on an individual basis. To apply for support through this Fund it is expected that candidates make efforts to prepare themselves sufficiently for success. This preparation might take place in a variety of ways including in the curriculum, in conjunction with Employability Coaches, Placements Consultants and mentors as well as using eCoach and other employability resources.

It will be for the Careers Networks’ Employability Coaches to review this preparation and to further individualise support prior to the candidate putting it forward in the funding application.  Candidates should contact an Employability Coach at the earliest opportunity.

Call in for a chat:
Stoke Careers Network
Ground Floor, Science Centre

Drop us an email: careersnetwork@staffs.ac.uk

Give us a call: 01782 294991

Types of projects that will NOT be considered for funding

Projects that will not be funded:

  1. Applications which are believed to be eligible for Research Council grants or other existing research funding sources. Applicants are advised to seek further advice from their Head of Department before submitting any applications with a research focus.
  2. Retrospective funding will not be considered.
  3. Applications from individuals (academic or student) seeking support for tuition, maintenance or other course fees or for replacement staff costs for sabbatical or other leave will not be considered.
  4. Projects requiring recurrent funding (including salaries and subscriptions).
  5. Projects requiring part-funding will only be considered if it is demonstrated that the rest of the project funds are available.
  6. Applications from individuals’ academic or student to cover living costs or social funding.
  7. Students will need to fund their own subsistence costs and any personal spending.
  8. Applications submitted and carried out by a non-active student or staff member.

How to apply for funds

Before you apply you must check that the project meets the criteria.

When you are satisfied that your project has a strong case for support, complete the application form.

Please be aware you can only apply once per semester for funding. Additional applications in the same semester will not be considered.

The size of grants available

The maximum amount of funding which will be awarded to an individual project is £1,000.  The number of projects which receive grants each year is limited solely by the funds available.

Application length and what can be included

All applications are recommended to be a minimum of 250 words in the Opportunity Summary. Enclosures or attachments will not be accepted.

Budget requirements

All applications should have a breakdown of budget requirements and a brief outline of how the candidate will sustain themselves for a longer-term opportunity. Applicants are advised that if an application is successful, no additional funding will be granted if costs are later determined to have been underestimated.

All applications should outline what funding routes they have already considered and investigated. They should also advise within their application what they will do should the application be rejected, or if the amount offered is less than the request.

When successful applicants will be notified

We expect to advise successful applicants, by email, within 5 weeks of receiving an application, however, please be aware that applications are reviewed on the last Thursday of each month. Applications received following the Monday prior to the last Thursday of the month, will be included in the following months’ review process.

How funding will be transferred to successful projects

Once an application has been approved, a member of the Development team will arrange for the transfer of funds to the bank account provided in the application form. If there is an issue with the details provided, a member of the Development team will be in touch.

 Project progress reporting

All successful applicants are expected to provide an update on their project, detailing expenses and indicating what progress has been achieved. It is also expected that where necessary photographic evidence is shown, and the recipient/s are interviewed to outline the details/successes of their project.

Unspent funds

After the project has been completed, any remaining funds should be returned to the Development Office.

Project publicity

An important part of fundraising is reporting successes back to our donors to inform them of the impact of their gifts. Donors are informed about the progress of projects through a variety of media. All successful projects are considered for inclusion to be used on the Development and Alumni website as well as in future publications.

Contact us

For further information contact:


in the UK for Quality Education

Sustainable Development Goal 4, Times Higher Education Impact Rankings 2023

for Career Prospects

Whatuni Student Choice Awards 2023

for Facilities

Whatuni Student Choice Awards 2023

for Social Inclusion

The Times and The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2023

of Research Impact is ‘Outstanding’ or ‘Very Considerable’

Research Excellence Framework 2021

of Research is “Internationally Excellent” or “World Leading”

Research Excellence Framework 2021

Four Star Rating

QS Star Ratings 2021