STUDENT PLACEMENT OPPORTUNITY BRUSSELS, August 2009- July 2010 Information Officer, Kent Brussels Office Placement description The Kent Brussels Office (KBO) is part of Kent County Council’s International Affairs Group. Every year, KBO offers a student placement, which is open to students of European Studies (French), French (single or joint honours), Politics and International Relations with French or Politics and International Relations with a year in Continental Europe. The 11-month placement, starting mid-August 2009 will provide the successful applicant with unique and exciting opportunities to develop their skills. As part of a team of 4, you will support the administration of the office, monitor policy areas to provide up-to-the-minute information to partners, have contact with EU officials, members of the European Parliament and be involved with major delegations and conferences. Background information Kent County Council opened its Brussels office in 1990. Today, the Kent Brussels Office is based at the heart of the EU quarter in Brussels and provides a number of services to partner organisations and to Kent County Council. These services include Early warning and information provision on the EU policy developments relevant to our partners and to Kent County Council Liaising with the offices of Members of the European Parliament and staff of the different EU institutions Organising high-profile seminars, delegation visits and dissemination events in Brussels and Kent. KBO placement students have gone on to successful European and international careers Here is what some of our previous University of Kent Information Officers said: “My experience at KBO provided me with a fantastic insight into what working in Brussels entailed and was an ideal springboard for finding a job in Brussels after graduation.” Helen Jackson, European Affairs Team Leader - Brussels, Local Government Association, Brussels, KBO Information Officer 1996-1997 “An amazing personal and professional experience that gave me a massive confidence boost” “The experience gave me a solid grounding and provided me with invaluable practical experience of working in EU affairs” Chris White, Senior EU Health Specialist, North West Health Brussels Office, KBO Information Officer 2002-2003 "The experience of working in the KBO was extremely useful in terms of knowledge of European affairs and policy, it was a real advantage for my final year studies" "Living in Brussels is fantastic, you get to meet people from all over Europe, and beyond, and make good friends" Kevin Bulled, Office Administrator at the Kent Brussels Office and KBO Information Officer 2004- 2005 Placement Description Key Responsibilities of the Information Officer 1. To undertake general administration, information management, reception duties and any other tasks to ensure the efficient operation of the office; 2. To support the work of Kent Brussels Office staff in the monitoring of EU policy, organisation of policy campaigns, seminars, events and delegations. In the running of events and delegations, the Information Officer will be expected to take on duties such as setting up and clearing away (meals, coffee), picking up lunch from external providers, meeting colleagues at the Brussels train station; 3. To disseminate information received by KBO according to the interests and priorities of partners; researching information in response to specific enquiries; 4. To attend and represent KBO at external briefings, seminars, receptions and other networking events, sometimes outside office hours, in different parts of Brussels, in Kent This may occasionally require travel outside of Kent and Brussels. 5. To take responsibility for drafting and collating articles for Kent in Europe, the fortnightly newsletter of the International Affairs Group, 6. To take on further policy work as requested and any other tasks identified by management, which reserves the right to amend or add to the duties listed. Person Specification The following outlines the Minimum and Desirable criteria for this post. Applicants should describe in their application how they meet these criteria. MINIMUM DESIRABLE QUALIFICATIONS Eligible students: Certain undergraduate students on their “year-abroad” EXPERIENCE Previous office work and customer services experience is an advantage. SKILLS AND ABILITIES Excellent organisational skills, including Ability to communicate the ability to handle simultaneously a in French to a range of tasks, to work effectively and reasonable standard of calmly under pressure and to deadlines oral and written fluency (e.g. on the telephone). Ability to work effectively on own initiative as well as within a team Competence in one or more other European Mastery of written / spoken English at languages the standard of a native speaker educated at higher education level (written and spoken). This includes the ability to summarise, demonstrate attention to factual accuracy, write engagingly and in different styles Good interpersonal skills, an ability to work in a multicultural environment IT & Word-processing skills (see next section) KNOWLEDGE Working knowledge of Microsoft Office Experience in using Word, Outlook, Internet browsers other MS Office suite programmes (excel, A general understanding of current Powerpoint etc) European Union institutional framework and competences Knowledge of web- based publishing is highly desirable. BEHAVIOURS High motivation, a positive, professional attitude to work, willingness to learn and take on new tasks A strong customer focus and commitment to teamwork and partnership working Able to take initiative, be adaptable and flexible Shows discretion with sensitive information Commitment to equal opportunities and anti-discriminatory practice Ability and willingness to travel and overnight stays in Kent and elsewhere in the EU, as required. Ability and willingness to work occasionally outside office hours (evenings, weekends) and to attend external seminars. Conditions Dissertation In agreement with his / her tutor, the student must complete a dissertation in the year. This is a necessary degree component Duration of placement: 11 months (mid-August 2008- mid-July 2008). This is a full-time placement; we will accommodate time for university work. Location of placement: Kent Brussels Office, Brussels Bursary: 3 payments totalling £7200 NET Holiday: 24 working days leave, in addition to Belgian bank holidays Other benefits: You will be offered two return trips by Eurostar between Brussels and London / Ashford / Ebbsfleet How to apply / information session How to apply: Please request an application form from firstname.lastname@example.org. The application deadline is 5pm, 28 November 2008. Information session on working in Brussels / at the Kent Brussels Office will be held on 22 October 2008 at the University of Kent, Room: KLT3 (Keynes Lecture Theatre 3), 14.00 – 16.00 Further information: To express interest in the placement and to obtain further information, please contact European Office, email@example.com or Dafydd Pugh, Acting Head of the Kent Brussels Office, firstname.lastname@example.org; Tel: +32 (0)2 504 0750 We look forward to receiving your application!