Barrovian Careers' Network


Career development is a lifelong process which is why King William’s College and The Buchan School is dedicated to supporting and assisting its students and alumni throughout their working life.

Whether you are a pupil of King William’s College, a first year student at university or have graduated, our Barrovian Career Network is a powerful online career platform which connects alumni and students and creates a network for sharing practical advice, skills development, networking tools, career related events, career exploration and general guidance.

We hope our platform will not just benefit younger OKWs who are entering the world of work, but also alumni who are looking for advancement advice or a change in career.

Become a Mentor

We welcome support from alumni in all stages of their professional lives. By joining our Barrovian Career Network you have the opportunity to support your fellow OKWs and those still studying at College.

As a mentor, you can assist in several ways, including:

  • Sharing your knowledge, experience and expertise
  • Examine career goals and decisions
  • CV reviewing
  • Career advice
  • Advise about any professional challenges the mentee may face
  • Mock interviews
  • Offer constructive criticism and feedback
  • Attending and representing your field at networking and career events
  • Offering work experience and/or internship
  • Help the mentee to reach their potential
  • Provide introductions to useful contacts

Guidance for Mentees

Depending on what you want out of the relationship, it doesn’t even necessarily need to be someone working in the same sector as you – it could be someone you want to learn from as a role model for reasons other than the specific skills you use in your day-to-day job.

A good mentor will take you out of your comfort zone, encouraging you to build upon your strengths, address any weaknesses, and stretch yourself in order to improve your skills and experience, and get ahead in your career.

You may wish a mentor at various different parts of your own career development to help you develop in a variety of areas.  It need not be the same mentor each time – indeed you may find better support in having different mentors at different stages who can support you in different ways.

What to look for in a mentor

  • Be clear what you want: Is it help to hone a particular skillset that you are after? Are you looking to develop your experience in a different field? Are you changing careers? Are you wanting advice on a specific project? How much support (i.e. contact time) do you need? Are you desperate to meet regularly in person or will Skype do? Get the practicalities of the arrangement straight in your own head from the outset, so you know exactly who and what you are looking for.
  • Finding someone you want to be like: Approach the kind of person you aspire to be like in the future, if all goes according to plan. Who has the perceived strengths that can help you in those areas where you feel you have weaknesses?
  • Equally (if not more) importantly, finding someone you like! A good mentoring relationship is a very personal thing, which works best if there is good chemistry between you. Do you respond well to a hard task-master, or do you need a more sensitive soul to guide you? Do you click with serious types, or are you happier listening to people who are a bit more relaxed? The clues to the kind of person you are dealing with will be there when you have your first proper conversation, so just make sure you listen to your instincts. While you can’t necessarily choose your boss, you can choose your mentor!

How to find and approach a mentor

When you’ve decided who you want to approach based on the questions and guidance above, a strategy for making contact might look something like this:
Email them to ask for an informal chat. The main thing is to get a sense of their career path and the experiences that brought them to where they are now, and more basically, whether it feels like you are going to get along.

Once you know you are keen to enlist their help, ask how they would feel about formalising it as a mentor-mentee relationship. You could suggest a monthly check-in meeting, for example, but remember there are no hard and fast rules, so don’t force it and expect them to commit to your ideal schedule.
You need to be proactive in making the best use of your mentor – they will NOT do the legwork for you.


Remember that while a mentor can offer you invaluable advice and perspectives, they are not there to make your choices for you. A good mentor will leave you feeling empowered, encouraging you to take full responsibility for your own career decisions and the consequences that come with them. The rest of your working life is up to you.


The Barrovian Alumni Internship offers a unique opportunity for a young alumnus to gain valuable skills and work experience during a three month work placement with Strix in their Hong Kong office.

Working alongside Strix’s Senior Business Analyst, the intern will work on multiple key projects, increase skill levels across a number of disciplines and, equally as important, enjoy the unique experience of living and working within Hong Kong and its diverse and multi-cultural environment.


Strix is at the forefront of development, manufacture and sales of safety control systems for small domestic appliances and filtration systems for filter kettles, fridge jugs and chilled water units, offering first-class quality and value to their customers across the world. Their global market share of the kettle safety control industry is 38 per cent. Strix retains its international presence with its head office in the Isle of Man and offices across the United Kingdom, China and Hong Kong. The Company employs over 800 people worldwide, selling its products in over 100 countries around the world.


The Internship is available to Alumni aged 18 – 25.

Applicants will go through an interview process with Strix and KWC.

The Internship will be for three months, usually starting in June.

The successful candidate will be provided with real work and given challenging tasks.

KWC will pay half the travel and accommodation costs of the successful candidate. The intern will cover the remaining costs, plus living expenses. Strix will support Visa costs.

The successful candidate will be expected to provide weekly updates, write an article and present to our Sixth Form on their experience.


“It was an experience that will stay with me for the rest of my life. Everything I did contributed to a truly captivating working environment where Strix values its interns and entrusts them with important tasks which contribute to the running of the company. I have hiked up mountains next to skyscrapers, visited historic Temples and monuments, sampled a huge variety of foods from the east and made new friends and lifelong contacts from all over the world including Hong Kong, China and America.”


2018 Thomas Dutnall (OKW 2010-2017)

“Working for Strix has opened up my eyes. So far in my life I have only experienced business operations through textbooks and teachers but it has been fantastic to put all my past studying from King William’s College and The University of Manchester into practical situations. Catherine has been amazing and explains the reasons behind all the projects I work on and why they are important to the business. This has allowed me to feel like a part of the company. Hong Kong has been amazing. I have always wanted a chance to experience Eastern Asia and its culture and it is safe to say Hong Kong has exceeded my expectations. I find it amazing that one minute you can find yourself battling your way through the crowded streets and then the next in a secluded, forgotten temple.”

2019 Dominic Long (2008-2016)

“Catherine and the team were there to support me throughout my time in Hong Kong. Their support allowed me to assist them fully and I took on tasks which could be used to calculate productivity and efficiency across Strix’s business. I found the job challenging but extremely rewarding and would like to thank everyone at Strix for helping and making me feel very welcome. I would encourage anyone considering this experience to apply.”



Do I need to complete an application form?

There is no application form to complete. Applicants will be asked to provide a CV, referees and letter of application.

When will I hear about an interview?

All applications will be reviewed after the closing date and shortlisted candidates will then be contacted with an interview date and time. We will also contact applicants who have not been successful with feedback.

Will I need to come to KWC for the interview?

We understand that many of our alumni are living and studying off Island so conduct all interviews online.

What date will the Internship start?

We will work with the successful applicant and Strix to find a start date that will work for everyone.

If you have any further questions please contact +44 (0) 1624 820470 or

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