Graduate Blog

Should You Utilize Your Hobbies Into A Skill?

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Many of you studying a degree will probably have an idea in mind what kind of career you wish to go into and what pace you need to go at, but the rest of you will probably be doing a degree that you find interesting, but have no idea what to do afterwards. With this in mind, it’s always a good idea to be more pro-active on the interests you currently have if possible. Some students during their University years may find that they have some other interests that they’ve thought of pursuing but perhaps didn’t, as they might fear it’s a waste of time. It may also be worth your while to try something you’ve never thought about doing before. Developing other skills along the way will not only help you develop as a person, but will look great on your CV!

Using me as an example, I had been interested in landscape photography before I had gone to London to study, so I thought it would be a good opportunity for me to build a portfolio in a new environment and had met some friends in my University with the same interests through societies. I also felt lucky through my course as I was able to choose which modules I wanted as well as being able to learn a language.

If your course does allows the privilege of choosing different modules, then perhaps think of choosing ones that are a bit more out of your comfort zone and a little more challenging to you. You can consider this a change of pace that will help you keep you on your feet as well as having potential to widening your skill-set and even if they are modules that dabble on a particular area, they’re still skills worth mentioning when applying for jobs.

One of the best ways in beginning something you might be interested in are probably to probably join a society meeting like-minded people who you can share your interests with. Alternatively, if you have the time and dedication, you can teach yourself such skills, as there’s a plethora of information on the Internet and in books, with this I was able to teach myself how to use Adobe Photoshop so that I could help enhance and edit the pictures that I took as well as helping to improve photography skills from reading magazines. If you have the motivation to learn that skill, nothing should stop you in the way of learning, and it’s always good to learn something new.

However, if your course is very straight forward about the modules you are taking, you shouldn’t have the mindset that just because you are studying your subject that perhaps trying new things would be a waste of your time and some of you may not have the time to participate in such activities especially if you’re in your final year. This is why it may be important to do as much as you can when you’re in your first and maybe second years when the workload hasn’t piled up as much.

Finally, it’s important to be able to accept constructive criticism and be able to use it in a way that helps you learn and grow. Just because you try something new and realize maybe you’re not very good at it, even if you enjoy it, doesn’t mean that you should just give up that idea. The point is to see if there are skills you can nurture and use them to the best of your ability and thus make you more desirable for any particular jobs you are looking for. It may also appear admirable to the employer if you are able to display a skill that you has been self-taught.

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About the Author

Reece Yau Reece Yau

I graduated from the University of Westminster with a degree in English Literature and Creative Writing. My favourite genres to read are horror and gothic literature and this along with my interest of video-game story lines is what created the interest in pursuing my degree. Alongside writing I also have interests in photography and food. My ambitions are perhaps to be a writer for games, or a food critic.

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