Regardless of the title, this article is addressed not only to those in their final year but also to everyone studying at the university, no matter which year they are in. It is encouraged to prepare for your future after graduation as early as possible. Why? Because there are many opportunities to look out for while you are still at the university. These are some tips for transitioning into graduate life more easily
Discover your interests and look for possibilities of continuing for higher education.
So, you really enjoy your study. You want to gain deeper insights into your subject or perhaps you want to research a particular topic beyond your current study materials. If this is the case, you might want to consider continuing your academic journey into postgraduate studies (either a Master’s or PhD programme). Did you know that you can also take a conversion course, a postgraduate study that is of a different field from your undergraduate study?
To know more about postgraduate studies at the University of Aberdeen, kindly check the article that I have recently written here.
And for those of you who are wondering about the life of a PhD student (especially if you are a parent), I highly recommend you read the beautiful article by Annette Raffan here.
You might also want to consult with your lecturers or supervisors regarding further steps to take, for they can give you advice on further studies that deemed suitable for your current academic background and experiences.
Create a LinkedIn account.
LinkedIn holds an important role in today’s professional world. You can find many interesting and up-to-date articles on your fields of interest on LinkedIn. Many LinkedIn users also like to share their experiences working in the professional field. From this, you should be able to gain some insights into the current working environment, including those surrounding your dream jobs.
The “Jobs” feature on LinkedIn enables you to browse for advertised jobs by employers. Even if you’ve still got a few years left at the university, I would encourage you to search for your ideal jobs and read the job descriptions and requirements for those positions. From this, you can have a picture of what to expect and prepare to get your ideal job (perhaps you should learn how to utilise software that is new to you).
Employers often assess their candidates’ credibility by looking at their LinkedIn accounts. Therefore, it is encouraged to establish a favourable yet genuine personal brand that can be reflected through your LinkedIn account. Some tips to achieve this are by composing a good and truthful resume on your LinkedIn, growing your connection (you can start by adding your friends who are already on LinkedIn) and be active by responding to posts that are relevant to your interests. From these, employers can see how your experiences relate to the job requirements and that you have good interpersonal skills and are passionate about your fields of interests. Thus, the chance of getting hired can be higher.
Sign up for an internship/part-time job/volunteering programme.
Enrich your university experience by signing up for an internship/part-time job/volunteering programme! Having work experience, either as an intern/part-time worker/volunteer can enhance your CV. Not only that, you can also familiarise yourself with the working environment you will be entering once you have completed your study. Some studies have discovered that working moderately while studying can boost your productivity and even help you achieve higher grades at school/university.
Don’t forget to check out the University of Aberdeen’s internship and volunteering opportunities. You might also want to read a testimony by a former intern of the InternPlus Programme, Chiara Riezzo, here.
And the benefits of being a Student Mentor as told by the 4th year LLB with English Law student, Alannah Comerford, here.
Access the Careers and Employability Service.
The University’s Careers and Employability Service is available for the current students and alumni of the University of Aberdeen. They offer virtual job fairs, careers events, job opportunities and advice on how to write a better CV and prepare for a job interview. You can access the service here.
(Please note that all services are currently operating online and/or by telephone due to the COVID-19 pandemic).
Ask your family and friends to share their experiences.
It is always lovely to hear directly from your close ones about their experiences in transitioning into graduate life, landing their jobs and finally thriving in their career. Because they have known you well, they can give you tips that are suitable to your profile and character. Regardless, I’m sure you can have a good chat with them.