Don’t neglect your career’s service
When studying at university it can be very easy to get lost in those 3 or 4 years of study. The temptation to party, study and eat super noodles daily can become all too real. However, I would recommend that amongst all of the university madness, you should never lose sight of what you are doing this for…your career.
I was quite fortunate in that I did this, keeping the next step after university firmly in mind, not at all times, but it was there. With this in mind, one thing I would regularly do would be visit my university careers service. Not necessarily because I was applying for a job or an internship, but just to keep my pulse on the graduate job market. I lost track of the number of people who I knew who had no idea what was going on in the graduate job market, thinking a degree would guarantee them their dream job instantly. I was more real than this.
In my visits to the careers service (once or twice every half term) I would do a number of things:
- Ask for CV writing advice / update my CV
- Ask for internship advice
- Have a practice interview with an advisor
- Attend career service seminars (covering a range of issues)
- Pick up the free brochures that were available
The knowledge and advice I got from my careers service was second to none. I was always in the know when it came to how to best prepare myself for the labour market. It immediately gives you an advantage over many of your fellow students as you have information in your arsenal they most probably do not have. Many of the things I learnt from my careers service often shocked me from employer expectations to how potential employees should conduct themselves at every step of the recruitment process.
The careers service is something often ignored by so many people at university. I think this is a real shame, as they are there to give a real boost to your employment chances, and I honestly believe they do.