The final year and beyond [Sophie Patten and Ferdouse Akhter | Contributing Writers]
The ‘Preparing for Life After Graduation’ workshop was recently held for final year students in order for them to understand the variety of skills which they can bring to the workplace. With presentations from a range of speakers, the session prepared students for the process of applying for jobs and graduate schemes, and gave them an insight into the minds of employers.
Speakers stressed the importance of good communication skills and for candidates to highlight these when applying for jobs. When completing any degree, there is a breadth of opportunities to develop one’s interpersonal skills, and these should be emphasised in your application.
These skills can be gained from many aspects of study, for example group projects enable one to work cohesively with other members and even take leadership of the team, both of which are valuable assets that can be highlighted when applying for jobs.
Helen Meyer, Careers Advisor at the university, gave a variety of tips to enhance candidates’ applications, including mirroring the language of the job description in order to associate yourself with the recruiter. Some pointers which attendees found useful included a range of websites suggested by Helen in order to kick-start searching for a career. The websites, included below, were recommended alongside completing career quizzes in order to help students find the ideal careers for them.
Although many of you may want to jump into the world of work, it is worth bearing in mind the other options available such as Masters and PGCE courses. It was also advised in the workshop to keep your career options open, by not singularly applying to graduate schemes. Many companies offer internships and graduate jobs that are not necessarily part of a scheme, yet can offer similar opportunities, and can be an effective method of bypassing mass graduate recruitment processes.
Alongside academic achievements, other activities that can enhance your application process include:
Seizing voluntary opportunities that the Student’s Union organise (hertfordshire.su/activities/volunteering)
Having a professional online presence, such as a Linkedin account (uk.linkedin.com)- website offering an insight into career paths of graduates with the same qualifications as you
Contributing to societies and extracurricular activities to show engagement and commitment
Help with starting your career can be found at the Careers and Placements office at LB416, Hutton Building, College Lane or at M018, The Atrium, de Havilland