Campus is weird after exams. The library is basically empty, but there are still people around the Students Union and the park! I keep meeting friends randomly, which is awesome and is definitely something I will miss about uni life. But everyone is getting ready to leave.
Right now I’m applying for jobs for next year. Halfway through my third year I realised I was not gonna be able to embark on a Master right away. Third year was great and I’m happy with my results, but it definitely took a toll on me and I need one year without deadlines or exams.
It is in moments like these that I realise how lucky we are at the University of Leicester. Because our Career Service is AMAZING. I don’t have much experience with other universities, I have to admit it, but the help I have received here was invaluable. There are three things I want to talk about:
First of all, the MyCareer website. For those of you who don’t know about it, this website lists all the opportunities advertised through the university. It could be anything, paid jobs, internships, and volunteering opportunities. The website allows you to research your area of interest and get an idea of what you could do. They even advertise jobs that can take you to other countries, like for instance teaching English in Italy during summer! That website is great, and I am so very happy that I will still be able to use it even after I graduate.
Another feature important feature of the website is the chance to book appointments with the Career Service, which is my point #2. Career Service Appointments can be very different based on what you need. You can have your CV checked, get help writing a cover letter, and even carry out a mock interview to make sure you have the answers ready. They also have “career guidance”, so you can discuss career ideas with them and identify jobs or volunteering opportunities that could suit your CV.
And finally, because I am basically a graduate student (the only thing missing is the ceremony!), I applied for a scheme called Graduate Gateways. Basically, once registered I had to attend a workshop, which pretty much summarised what I had learned from previous events, i.e. how to write a proper CV, an effective cover letter, and how to behave for a successful interview. After that, we were given a list of potential graduate internships. The great advantage of being part of the programme (apart from being informed about potential graduate roles) is that there is less competition compared to other applications. The problem for me is the same one that has been haunting me for these past three years. It is very difficult to find internships regarding mental health, especially therapy-oriented. I applied for one internship from that list nonetheless, even if it falls outside my area of experience. It was worth a shot. Fingers crossed!
Bottom line is: use the career development service!
It is incredibly useful in so many ways. I will be applying for jobs all summer, even jobs that are not related to my degree (I can still get valuable experience through volunteering!), and the skills I’ve been taught throughout my university experience are invaluable.