Careers

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Careers

How I am developing my employability

A flatlay image of someone working at a laptop with a notepad next to them

If you were to ask me what my career plan looks like now, I would certainly say that it is so different to when I started University.

Then, I had a limited view on business, however when I began studying my perspectives shifted. Not only my course, but also numerous events by the Business School, its employability services, and all the extra-curricular activities I have undertaken, have broadened my horizons. I am very grateful I have the chance to be part of a University that offers so many opportunities and allows its students to grow. A gift that keeps on giving.

Here I will share my own experience on how I developed my employability throughout my journey at University.

Starting early

An alarm clock next to the bed

I realised that if not me, no one else will make my dream career happen. So, I started to work on it early on whilst I was still in high school. Since then many things have changed but I kept trying out new things, gathering skills, and experiences. That is why when I entered University, I didn’t wait for the last year to develop my employability and began right away. This was 100% worth it, as it allowed me to see what I want and more importantly, what I don’t want to do quite early on in my studies.

Careers Service

When I started University, I didn’t know what made a good CV or covering letter. So when the time came to look for a part-time job, I had to learn. The internet was full of advice and sometimes it was hard to make my mind up on what’s right and wrong. That is when I discovered the Careers Service. They helped me not only to make my CV outstanding but also advised me on how to look for a job.

A student speaks to someone at the careers service information desk

From then on, I made appointments with them whenever I felt that my CV needed some feedback, or I wanted to practise for an upcoming interview. This service is hands down one of the best ones at Newcastle University.

LinkedIn

Before starting my course, I knew very little about this platform. However, during Employability Week at the Business School, I found that it could be a really useful tool not only for networking but also for learning. They explained the basics of how to use it and I signed up.

Now, I use it all the time and I cannot stress enough how much I recommend it for every student. It allowed me to find people I look up to now, be in the know of hot industry news, learn and get inspired. What’s more, the Business School provides its students with free access to LinkedIn Learning courses. I am using it to learn industry-specific skills and develop my employability. I talked about one of the courses I took over on my LinkedIn profile.

Competitions

One of the most influential experiences for my career aspirations were the various competitions that I signed up for, including:

  • NCL Apprentice, Enterprise Hackathon
  • The Pitch by the Chartered Institute of Marketing
  • The Coca-Cola Sustainability Challenge

A group of people work together on a project in a meeting room

This allowed me to meet new people, work in a fast-paced environment and develop soft skills like teamwork and leadership. All the competitions involved companies like IBM, P&G, Lidl and Coca-Cola, which was an invaluable chance to work on real-life business cases. On my LinkedIn profile, I talked about how my friend and I ended up being listed in the Top 10 teams nationally at The Pitch.

Internships and other positions of responsibility

So far, I have undertaken three internships in marketing and communications, I’ve been a Peer Mentor and Call Agent at Newcastle University, as well as an Event Coordinator for the Leadership Society. Now I work on several other projects alongside my studies and work as a Business Ambassador at the Business School.

It wasn’t always easy to balance extra-curricular activities and studying, but it taught me discipline and time management. After all, I am always trying to make studying my priority. These experiences have opened my eyes and steered my career path towards the direction it is going now. I have met wonderful mentors, friends and grown a lot.

Guest lectures and workshops

If you have read my other blog posts, you probably remember that I keep mentioning Google and L’Oréal events that I had a chance to attend. They helped me to get a better grasp of the business world and evaluate if that was a career I wanted to pursue. What is more, I have attended numerous other events organised by the Careers Service, Students’ Union and societies. These were focused on developing various soft skills and providing advice on shaping your career path.

A person talks to the room in front of a flip chart with the word 'voice' on it

One of my favourite events was a workshop organised by the TedX Society, where we practiced public speaking and had so much fun. I could list all the other events but that would take forever, so I’m just going to say that you should reap the benefits of as many opportunities as you can.

It’s a process

Having said all that, lastly, I would like to emphasise that it is consistency that makes things happen. Success doesn’t happen overnight – it’s a process.

Enjoy it, don’t compare yourself to others, decide what works best for you and go on to live the life of your dreams. Even if it sometimes doesn’t look like it, you’ll get there.

 

Chat to a current student or read more blogs on our Unibuddy messaging platform.

Vasare is an undergraduate student studying Business Management at Newcastle University Business School.

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