Let’s be honest, finding a job isn’t the easiest of tasks, even on a good day. With unemployment high, and skilled full-time work becoming harder and harder to secure, graduates need all the help they can get.
Application after application and still no interview? Interview after interview and still no luck? If this is a horribly familiar scenario, then I’m sure you can empathise with me when I stress just how important work experience is when you start out on the first rung of the career ladder.
When Should You Undertake Work Experience?
It’s never too late to start racking up the experience. However, if you can get stuck in during your time at university you will definitely find it beneficial. Besides the obvious CV–enhancing and skill-learning benefits, work experience can also be great for your social life, introducing you to other like-minded people with similar interests.
With its lengthy summer breaks and the days off during the week, university offers plenty of time outside of study for you to take on some sort of work experience. There’s always the weekend, too.
Where Can I Find Work Experience?
All over the place, is the short answer. You could start by looking at opportunities for volunteering, be it for a charity, in a hospital shop or for a youth group. Organisations are always on the lookout for volunteers and it’s an easy way to get your foot in the door of the field you’re passionate about, and to make some good contacts whilst you’re at it.
If volunteering isn’t your thing, why not find a part time job, a work placement or an internship? All of these boast the same benefits and all promise to make you stand out from the rest when it comes to applying for your first professional job.
Use The SU!
The student Union is there to help in any way possible, so who’s to say they can’t help your when securing a placement? Many universities often have weekly papers that offer regular work for writers, which gives you a chance to build up your portfolio and get hands-on experience.
If it is writing experience that you’re looking for then why not try your luck with the smaller, local newspapers and magazines? This type of publication is almost always looking for contributors.
Another avenue for acquiring writing work experience is through one of the thousands of blogs that are scattered across the internet. Whether you start your own or contribute to one that tickles your fancy, it’s a great way to fit writing work experience around your university study.
With the total number of unemployed across the UK standing at 2.53 million, and with an increasing number of graduates being forced to take under skilled jobs, the reality of the situation sinks in – if you don’t have the experience, you aren’t getting the job.
So, how’s your CV looking?
Nadine Badresingh is a versatile, creative and upfront writer, looking at the world through the hazy glasses of a Journalism graduate. She blogs for GKBC.
Originally posted 2013-03-02 02:48:23.
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