In the coming months thousands of students will be graduating from university with the intention of getting their dream job in their specialist industry. However, is the picture going to be any brighter than when this 2012 survey in The Guardian revealed that one in five graduates face long term unemployment? With University fees rising, is it worth sacrificing three years of earning money and gaining work experience to study at university?
A lot of students go to University straight after college or sixth form and simply take the course they enjoyed the most without actually having any idea what they want to do within the field. Others have a clear vision and go about taking the necessary steps to achieve their goals, but end up being frustrated in a highly competitive job market.
To avoid the fate of many other graduates in previous summers undergraduates should ensure they are prepared for a tough job market when they finish. One of the most common flaws of a graduate is a lack of relevant work experience. Undergraduates should identify what they want to do and try and get an internship (in the summers of years one and two) so they can get some relevant experience under their belt.
Universities have a lot of career-based facilities and events that a lot of undergraduates fail to take advantage of. Careers fairs are a great way to meet potential future employers and gain valuable contacts. Most universities also have career councillors who can help you target the direction you wish to take and provide you with a plan of action. It’s also important that undergraduates are realistic in their goals and must be prepared to work their way up from the bottom.
Finding your dream job is often a very frustrating process and can end up taking a lot longer to come to fruition than initially expected. Graduates must remember that finding that dream job is rarely going to be the starting point on the career ladder, but via a few stepping stones, it can be achieved as a result of hard work, making good connections and getting a little luck along the way.