January 24, 2020, by Leah Sharpe
A world of careers outside your textbook…
By Katy Skillen, second year MNutr Nutrition and Dietetics student
So, exam time of year is winding down, and it’s safe to say we are all definitely ready for a well-deserved break. For the past few weeks, our whole lives have consisted of just essays and revision and endless cups of coffee, but maybe amongst all your notes you may have forgotten that while these exams are important, there is also lots of other vital aspects of your careers life you may be neglecting.
Although summer may seem months away, now is the time when applications for internships and summer jobs are really starting to pick up, and it can be easy to miss out on application deadlines when you have your head stuck inside a biology book all day! So, if you feel like you can relate, here are some tips to try and get that study and career balance back on track.
Short and sweet
For me, I always tried to take just 30 minutes out of my Uni work a day to do some research into summer jobs available, as interview and recruitment days often start in February. In fact, I found that if I did this before starting revision it would actually help put me in a more focused mind set and I’d feel super productive, even before I started revising.
Keep an eye on your emails
Events, careers talk and reminders about upcoming talks and deadlines (such as if you are thinking of applying to a University-run Summer School or year abroad opportunity) are always happening throughout the year, and it can be easy to forget to check these! I try to use the time on the bus on the way to the library as a chance to catch up on emails about what is going on about campus, which does help me feel more organised.
Don’t forget about a planner!
When lectures are not in full swing just yet, it is easy to lose structure in your day, but try to keep writing in your planner about key dates coming up. Just because you may not have been set any University work deadlines yet doesn’t mean you shouldn’t still be setting your own deadlines regarding personal career goals.
Part-time work still exists
Yes I know lots of people don’t want to do any work over exam season, and with exams finishing the thought of going to the workplace and not relaxing does sound pretty grim. But I still recommend keeping up your part-time work. I’m literally just doing one shift a week right now, which isn’t much but still gets me a bit of money and reminds me that the normal world of work still exists outside of George Green library!
Engage in other activities!
It’s so important to get perspective that exams are not everything, and lots of people form careers out of other activities such as societies, so staying involved in these is still necessary! Also, it reminds you that even if those exams were tough and you’re not feeling too positive about results, there are plenty of other routes you can go down regarding your career. Developing interpersonal skills and interests should never be neglected, even during 24 hour library time!