CAREERS BLOG: Not fixed for after graduation – don’t panic!

UoY Careers Imagine the possibilities LARGE dark green Careers blog by Becky Jones, Assistant Director: Careers Education, Advice & Guidance

The hard work and partying is nearly done. It is the end of term, and indeed the end of your time at University of York. That momentous milestone that has been on the horizon for at least 3 years has finally arrived, amidst much joyous celebration no doubt. Now, if only there weren’t that nagging feeling of “I really ought to do something about what I do next” spoiling the total sense of euphoria.

However, like most things that we put off because they fall into the “too hard to think about” category, sorting out a plan for your next step is really not that hard to do – you just need to get started.

So, if you have already accepted a place on a Graduate Scheme, the next course or have booked the flights to Brazil for the World Cup, then enjoy If, however, plans are a little more fluid / non-existent, here are some top ideas on how to step with confidence into your graduate career.

1. Get your thinking cap on – where are your strengths and how do you play to them? The Employability Tutorial will be the perfect starting place to do an audit of your skills (vle.york.ac.uk). Thinking more broadly than your academic studies is really important – you will have developed lots of other strengths during your time at York – be it through societies, volunteering, college life, work experience or internships. Now is the time to bring that all together.

2. If you’re not entirely sure of what sort of career you want to embark upon, don’t stress about it, just dive in to an area that looks interesting. If you’re not sure where to start, come along to the Summer Recruitment Day, on 17th June, 12-3pm, in Careers, to chat with agencies recruiting for summer and beyond. Profiling local and national, permanent and temporary, there will be the broadest range of roles the agencies are looking to fill with York Graduates. Just bring along your CV on the day (don’t forget to book on Careers Gateway to get updates on which agencies are coming).

3. Be open-minded – the opportunities are countless, but you will need to broaden your horizons both physically and mentally. Be prepared to relocate to a new city or even country, and be positive about the type of role (eg direct entry as opposed to Grad scheme) and organisation you’re considering. Half of York’s graduates go onto find success in Small- and Medium-sized Enterprises (organisations which employ 250 or less employees), which offer exciting and dynamic internships, as does the volunteering sector. They will be looking for quality grads with people and pragmatic skills, so make sure you can talk about your volunteering and work experience to bring to life the invaluable skills you’ve developed.

4. It’s even still not too late to get on a grad scheme! In a recent poll of the top 200 Graduate Recruiters (Association of Graduate Recruiters – AGR), 87% of employers were reporting unfilled vacancies for the 2014 round. Check out the unfilled vacancies, especially in areas of IT, Electronic Engineering and General Management as they are reporting the highest potential for late applicants. Just be sure to make it a top quality application, because many of those organisations are citing as the reason for unfilled vacancies being insufficient quality of applications so far.

Finally, Careers at York is there for you for life as an alumn, whereas many other Universities limit the support following graduation. So be sure to tap into those fantastic resources, advice and guidance 1:1 sessions, practice interviews and assessment centres to banish any worry-clouds lurking. Your next step is simple, pop in, or get in touch very soon. We look forward to hearing from you.

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