This question has to be the most dreaded and hated question for all recent graduates and I can’t count how many times I’ve been asked it since graduating in July. Why is it that people expect you to go straight into a graduate scheme or in a great company, it is not that easy! But disregarding this, why should we be expected to jump straight into work?!
According to the Bureau of Labour Statistics, in the UK the average worker currently holds ten different jobs before the age of 40 with the majority of these being career changes. As it is with the challenges we are facing with UK’s ageing population our retirement age will continue to increase so by the time my generation retires we will probably be very grey and using a zimmer frame to get to work. So I feel why rush straight onto the career ladder when its going to be one hell of a long ladder to climb. It may just be a personal opinion but I feel developing yourself as an individual, perhaps by travelling or an internship is a good stepping stone from your degree to your decided career. It is commonly said that taking a gap year to see more of the World and to meet new people can make you more employable in the long-run, after all we do live in a global marketplace. Plus don’t we deserve a break after three years of hard work at University?! This view may be ignited from the fact I did not do a vocational degree so by doing this I feel I can test the waters and decide what specific area of work I would like to enter. Plus I am still considering a Masters but am wanting to wait to see what type of Masters degree would be most beneficial for what area I decide to go into. But I am a firm believer that there is a lot of pressure and a social stigma surrounds expectations of graduates too soon after their degree finishes.
Post graduate life for me so far has been great and I’m very excited for my journey over the next several months before I start a graduate scheme/work. I have had a lovely summer and am about to go travelling to Sri Lanka with my sister before I embark on a ski season to St Anton, Austria as a Chalet Host with Ski World. After this I plan to do an internship in Rajasthan with Seva Mandir which is one of India’s leading development non-profit organisations. Here, I will work in the field focusing on women’s development for three months. During my time away I will apply for graduate schemes/work to start in September after my return. I am extremely excited for these upcoming adventures and the life and work experiences I will gain. Yet, people may view this as “putting off the real world” and “delaying work”. I can happily say whilst I am glad I am having this ‘time off’ before work, I am also extremely excited to come back and start applying my degree to my career and entering the workplace.
Based upon this, I feel it is important to acknowledge that everyone has their own paths in which they desire to follow. Yours may not suit another persons like mine might not suit yours but that is what makes us all different and what a boring place the World would be if we weren’t.
How is/was your post graduate life?