What to do after you Graduate? If you’re one of the many people about to graduate University this year you are probably in the middle of exam cramming and dissertation hell! The final year of a degree takes up all of your time (well with a few breaks to have a pint in the student union!), so it’s not surprising that you may not have your next steps after University figured out. For those of you who have gone straight from School to Sixth Form and straight from there to University this may be the first time you haven’t had a plan. Below are a few reasons not to panic as well as some suggestions to help you plan your next steps after graduating.
Look for the right job for you
Graduates are often tarred with the stigma that they are too picky when looking for work after University but it is important to find a job that suits you. Think about what roles and locations are suitable to your skillset and start to research them online. Applying for graduate schemes / graduate specific roles may be the best route for you, but make sure you broaden your search to other sites such as Reed.co.uk. If you are looking for a job in a specific industry (e.g. IT) you can look at targeted recruitment sites as well (e.g. The IT Job Board).
Go back to University
Just because you’ve finished your degree doesn’t mean you’ve learnt everything you need to know for the world of work. Many graduates continue on to study a Masters Degree or work towards a PHD! Depending on your desired area of work this can be really beneficial so if you feel you want to further your studies why not consider another course!
Try something new
If you’re one of the many students that went to University straight from College / Sixth Form then you probably applied for your course when you were just 17. What you want when you’re 17 isn’t necessarily going to be what you want to do for the rest of your life, so don’t panic if you change your mind. A lot of employers want to see graduates of a certain level (e.g. 2:1 or above) rather than a specific discipline. I personally chose to do a degree in Dance but since graduating have forged a career in marketing and social media through a variety of industry experience – so it can be done!
Leaving University with a student loan debt hanging over you – why not book a trip to Australia? Sounds kind of stupid when you put it like that but a lot of graduates take time after University to travel whether for an extended holiday or to work! If you have the travelling bug it probably isn’t going to disappear so why not take that dream trip now before you start full time employment?
Whatever you decide to do next remember this – you don’t have to have the rest of your life sorted straight away. Take some time to think what works best for you and plan your way of achieving it. If you’re applying for a new role don’t get disheartened by a lack of response, stay positive and keep going until you get the result you want!
Sophie Heaton (Digital Campaign Manager)