Thursday, April 12, 2012
From student to student marketing. The rises and falls of a graduate job hunt
This weeks posts comes from our very own, Louisa Smith, Marketing Assistant telling you all about her transition from being a student to her first full-time graduate job.
For my first entry, I want to go right back to the beginning and tell you about my journey from university to working life. As a student, it’s incredibly easy to assume that you will finish your degree, graduate in the summer, enjoy a few months of lazing about in luxurious sunshine, and then settle down on a graduate scheme in September, earning your own money, renting a swish new pad with your friends, and essentially, living the dream. Of course this happens for a lot of people, but for those it doesn't happen to – I want to reassure you that there are many other ways to find your feet in the world of work!
A year ago, I was happily living in the bubble world of
. I loved everything about Warwick University Warwick. I knew the end
was nigh, and whilst I was sad to leave university, I was also excited to start
my career. I therefore spent the majority of terms one and two filling out
application forms for graduate schemes. My Facebook news feed was constantly
plastered with celebratory statuses from those who had secured their graduate
scheme and new life for the next year. As I wrote about all the extra
curricular activities I was involved in, all the work experience I had done,
all the ways I had expanded my knowledge and developed my personality at
university, I made the assumption that I would be offered a place on at least one of them, surely?
Sadly not. I was rejected from every single graduate scheme I applied to, and was dragged away from
an emotional wreck, with about 50p in my bank account and no plans for the rest
of my life. After a few (long) days of arguing with my parents about washing up
or radio volume or sharing of the car, I decided that regression was not the
way forward, and that the only way I would be happy is if I had a reason to get
up and get out of the house everyday! I therefore began the search for an entry level graduate job.
And that’s where TARGETjobs came along! The role required someone to work for 3 months, travelling the
UK, representing TARGETjobs at
Freshers and Careers Fairs. I would be in different places everyday, meeting
new people, having new experiences, and all the time developing my skills for
future employment. For the first time, I felt excited about a job. I completed an application form, had a
telephone interview, and was then invited to the head office for a face-to-face
interview. As expected, I was asked about my previous experience, my skills,
and what I believed I could bring to the role. My answers came naturally for
the first time, I felt like I had found a job which matched my skills, and
which I believed I could really succeed in. When I was offered the job, I
accepted immediately! The three months flew by, and I had a fantastic time
working at all the fairs. My success in the role then led me to a full-time
position in the TARGETjobs Marketing Department, where I began work in January.
I’m now expanding my skills and knowledge everyday, and am (hopefully!) well on
the way to a future career in marketing. All this stemmed from one application
back in July, for a temporary role!
This experience has therefore taught me that there is more than one way to enter the world of work. There are hundreds of jobs out there, but what’s important is that you search out the right role for YOU. My CV was bursting with extra-curricular activities which I’d undertaken at university, and it was this energetic and lively lifestyle which got me my role in marketing, because they demonstrated that I had the necessary skills for the job. My advice is therefore to get as much work experience as you can, in the area that you would like to work in. If you get rejected from a graduate scheme or entry job, keep going! There is something out there for everyone, and once you find your dream job, I promise you that all your experience and efforts will definitely pay off!
So have a think about what you’d like to do, then get out there and go for it!
P.S. Next time I’ll be writing all about my role in marketing, and what you can expect as a graduate in a marketing job. Until then, happy job-hunting!