…and for anyone else looking for experience.
Earning your degree or qualification after months or years of study and hard work can feel daunting and – quite frankly – anticlimactic. Coupled with a pandemic and subsequent lockdown, not knowing what to do with yourself afterwards is a common and understandable place to find yourself in.
Not everyone has the privilege or luck of walking straight into a graduate job, and sometimes people don’t necessarily know how or where to put their knowledge and skills to use.
I am one such person.
However, there are some things I have been doing in order to continue learning (which are not limited by any means to academia) and to gain skills which future job prospects will favour. There are some resources I have included, too, which offer internships, mentoring, and other opportunities that might be of use to you or someone you know.
- Open University: The Open University – OpenLearn – offers free courses and educational resources for anyone, and in a variety of subjects. You can gain introductory knowledge to a subject you’ve recently become interested in, brush up on your pre-existing knowledge, or find a new topic to explore.
- FutureLearn: FutureLearn is jointly owned by the Open University, and likewise offers free courses spanning multiple topics and interests. Some of the courses I have completed include an Introduction to Screenwriting, Accenture Digital Marketing, and an Introduction to Korean Philosophy, among others. See also: The Skills Toolkit – Digital Skills Courses Selected by the DfE – FutureLearn.
- Creative Access: Creative Access enables those who are underrepresented in the creative industries to gain access to career opportunities and career development support.
- LinkedIn: While I am recently only getting to grips with LinkedIn, it has already proven useful in finding opportunities and connecting with others who have similar or aspirational career paths.
- Graduate Career Advantage Scotland (GCAS): This is an organisation which offers careers support and paid intern opportunities for recent graduates who are living in Scotland.
- TargetJobs: Targetjobs is aimed at students and graduates, and provides information on different career sectors, and a career planner to help navigate your career path.
- Prospects graduate careers: Prospects provides a career planner and an occupational database which includes job descriptions, entry requirements and career prospects. It also holds a database of postgraduate courses.
- National Careers Service: This website contains a large database of job profiles, for those who live in England.
Learning is important and we all learn in different ways. Some of the resources listed above offer the chance to learn in your own time, at your own pace, and for free. Deadlines, essays, and exams are all well and good when it comes to the rigour and structure of academia, but I believe learning happens outside of this framework, as much as it does within it.
The skills and knowledge gained from such opportunities can be transferred to your CV. Any potential employers will perceive you as open-minded, adaptable, and determined: all traits that will allow you to succeed in the workplace, and life in general. Of course, No Extra Source offers the perfect post-graduate work experience too.