Careers and Internships
by Samantha Holden
The question I was continuously asked at family Christmas parties this year was what sector or job do you want to do? or what sector do you think you will end up in? I am still unsure of what I would like to after graduating. The reason I chose to do a PPL degree is the number of doors it kept open for me at the end. It is ok not knowing what your dream job is.
I discussed careers with my personal tutor at the begging of term 1 in my personal tutor meeting which now seems a long time ago. He suggested the career team would be able to help advise me on what careers might suit me. Consequently, I booked an appointment with Stephanie from the team and went to visit her in University House. She was incredibly informative and gave me some suggestions after listening to what ideas I had about my future career. She initially suggested becoming a teacher as most of my experience is in working with children and young adults. Teaching is something that I do not see myself doing straight after university although I have not completely ruled it out. Therefore she talked to me about what I thought my strengths and weaknesses were. I had previously not given this much thought so she asked me to fill in a strengths profile. This was a 30-minute questionnaire which asked multiple-choice questions about different tasks in order to gauge what were my invisible and invisible strengths and weaknesses.
Stephanie is meeting with me when we return to Warwick to discuss what jobs would suit these strengths and also discuss how to improve on my weaknesses.
A key part of the meeting with Stephanie was discussing my experience. Experience can be useful even if you learn from it that it is something you do not want to do in the future. I learnt from past work experience that I work best when there is a clear target and you can physically see the impact of your work. Consequently, I have applied to the Summer Diversity Internship Programme run by the Civil Service. This internship appealed to me because you are assigned ‘real’ work to which assists in delivering projects commissioned by the government. The internship helps develop your skills and provides an insight into what the world of work may be like and treats you as a valued member not just an intern to make the tea! I have also applied to other internships, work experiences and career days with the aim of narrowing down what my dream job may be.
My advice would be:
Think ahead- when it comes to applying for graduate schemes and jobs many employers look for work experience or internships that you have completed in their sector.
Have some more self-confidence- applying can be daunting but now is the best time to learn what is correct and wrong about your application form.
Give things a chance. Sometimes an internship in an industry you are uncertain about can allow you to find your dream job.
Make sure to use the career service. The team provide support in both internships and applying for jobs.