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September 2016

Applications open to join Think Ahead in 2017

Applications are now open to join the Think Ahead programme in July 2017!

If you want a graduate job that’s both rewarding and demanding, and you’re motivated to do something about the mental health challenge, from today you can apply to start your leadership career with Think Ahead. On our two-year programme you’ll be paid to work in an expert team alongside clinical professionals, study for a master’s degree in social work, and develop your leadership skills.

We have between 80 and 100 places available, and we’re looking for people who are ready to take an intensive route into a profession that’s challenging both intellectually and on a personal level.

If that sounds like you, then you can find out everything you need to know, and make your application, on this website. To start you off, here are three of the top questions we get asked:

What’s the job like?

It’s very varied. You work with people experiencing a wide range of mental health problems – from psychosis to personality disorders – and with their families and communities. Your role can include personal support and therapy, arranging care, and upholding people’s legal rights.

I never wanted to wear a tie to work and sit in an office every day!

Jon, mental health social worker

If you want to find out more about the job, check out our About mental health social work page. As well as information on the different activities mental health social workers undertake, and how you could progress your career in the profession, you can read stories from social workers and the people they support.

Jon, a social worker in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, told us: “I love the challenge of social work and the opportunity to work directly with people and do some good. And I never wanted to wear a tie to work and sit in an office every day!” You can hear more from him, and see five other stories, here.

Who joins Think Ahead?

All sorts of people. The graduates and career-changers who successfully applied to join our first cohort (pictured above) came from a wide range of backgrounds, with undergraduate degrees ranging from psychology, sociology, and politics, to archaeology, drama, and sports science.

You can hear from some of our participants on our Who we’re looking for page. They each have different stories, but they share a commitment to making a real difference to people with mental health problems. Read about them here.

How can I boost my chances of being accepted onto the programme?

We asked Ivan Wise, our Recruitment Director, for his top tips:

“First of all, it’s worth applying early. We run assessment centres and offer places on a rolling basis, and if you apply earlier – and your application is progressed to assessment stage – there are more likely to be slots available at an earlier assessment centre.”

It’s worth applying early. We offer places on a rolling basis.

Ivan Wise, Recruitment Director

“But take care over what you write, too. Our selection process is based purely on how candidates match up to the seven Think Ahead attributes, so make sure you give us compelling evidence of your abilities, using clear and correct language.”

You can find out more about the selection process, and see more tips and guidance, on our How to apply page. (We will announce the final application deadline with at least two weeks’ notice.)

Good luck!

When you’re ready, you can apply here.