“What about my degree?” How college students and university graduates can be ready for work

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“I’ve just spent years studying, why can’t I get a decent job that uses my degree, once I graduate?” This is one of the most common questions graduate students ask, so here’s our take on a recent headline. It’s time to get ready for work!

Publication Mirror Newspaper (UK)

Article 1 in 3 university students forced to take up ‘below graduate level’ jobs – despite £44,000 ($55,000) debt

A summary of the article with our thoughts…

Sounds unfair, doesn’t it? Students want the college or university to get them ready for work.

Imagine studying a degree for three or four years and then facing the fact that you cannot use it. Not getting a job that matches your latest qualification can be very frustrating. Students are experiencing this dilemma every year. 

The article refers specifically to the UK education system and how students feel after leaving. Students want to believe in their degree study and hope it can take them far on their career journey. With the world changing so rapidly (look at technology!), we are already preparing students for a world that does not yet exist. So this we need to work on to come as close to the truth as possible. 

Teaching and Learning goes beyond the class room and lecture theatre. If we can reduce the number of students that regret the time, effort and money invested in their university education, that would be great! 

But students, much of the responsibility resides in your hands. Consider the fact that hundreds of thousands of students are studying at degree level. What more are you doing to make yourself stand out?

Your course is one thing but add more to it. Think about how much effort you put into self-education because you cannot solely rely on your school, college or university.

Ask yourself: “How can I be different and go the extra mile?”

Get READY FOR WORK – Achieving the job that is right for you is possible!

Personal experiences from Our Team Members

Olivia: Sometimes you have to create what you are looking for. I made sure that I did more than just attended classes and lectures, I did online research and also got involved with different activities. Sports is not for me personally but I know you can learn the transferable skills ‘teamwork’ from there. You learn to juggle all that you do if it means you have a better professional profile at the end, with theory and practical experience.

Theo: It’s hard at first but starting with something that is uncomfortable at first, can lead to you surprising yourself. Taking to people was not my thing but after more than two years of delivering Customer Service for a top Construction company, it is easier. My apprenticeship has changed my life and widened my skill-set.

Here are some tips for students to improve their chances:

1. Do your research in advance because waiting until you are at the application stage is too late. Look at your career options and job prospects before that final year, so that you have more time to prepare. 

2. Maximise your time, by building on other skills outside of the scheduled hours. Find extra-curriculum activities that allow you to explore current interests and discover new ones. Taking up a part-time job or being involved in flexible projects will involve transferable skills.

3. Learn something new, which means stepping outside of your comfort zone. Treat your undergraduate degree as a skeleton but in order to survive, the bones need muscle. Build it! Your teacher and professors give you the base point, it’s up to you to add to it with current updates and further understanding. There is so much online to exploit.

4. Live the College / University Life as the demo version or practice run. So that means, manage your responsibilities, from money to time and everything else in between.

5. Visualise what you are passionate about, plan the steps forward and then take action. Students, you can sit in the driving seat of your life! If you invest in yourself to figure out what you want, you will recognise the value in doing what it takes to get it.

Going back to the article, sometimes a lower position is what you need to go through first to pick up a transferable skills. Or it gives you more time to decide what your next big step will be. Every decision to get ready for the work you want to do, is yours!

Take responsibility and Make it Happen – Be Ready For Work!

Click HERE to Invite Us In to give your students more advice – Live or Virtual 

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