In one of my first blog posts for Inside Edge, ‘Am I too old to go to uni?’, I wrote a little about my decision to come to uni at the age of 23 in an attempt to reassure everyone that it is never too late (and you are never too old) to pursue your dreams. Today, I want to really drive that point home and shed some light on the rather twisty, hilly path I took from sixth form to university. I guess, compared to the majority, it’s the path less traveled.
For most of my time in sixth form, I was preparing to go to university. I didn’t particularly want to and I didn’t feel remotely excited like my peers did, but it seemed like the right and most obvious thing to do. I didn’t even question it. As the application process came to an end and I stared at a UCAS Track inbox full of offers from brilliant universities…I realised that I didn’t want to accept a single one of them. I yearned to be out in the world working and I was desperate to start a creative career. I knew from the research I had done for my personal statement that I didn’t actually need a degree for my chosen career if I could get a solid portfolio so I had a blog throughout college and eventually secured an incredibly prestigious and competitive apprenticeship in social media and digital marketing for businesses. I worked for a fabulous agency in Manchester and was kept on to look after some big household brands after qualifying, living the good life, and drinking free cocktails in fancy bars after work!
Fast forward slightly and my Dad passed away suddenly, leaving me feeling lost and desperate to be with my family more to support them. I gave up my role in digital marketing and spent nearly two years working in foreign currency retail so that I had flexible shifts and never had to take work home with me so that my time with my Mum was undistracted. After 18 months of this, I felt more like ‘me’, and that yearn to be creative was biting at my heels once more. I returned to digital marketing and was delighted to be creating once more, but something was missing.
I had been struggling with my own mental health for years and struggled to find any support in my local area due to huge waiting lists and funding issues. One day, after a truly life-changing phone call with an NHS Psychological Wellbeing Practitioner, I Googled his job title and added ‘how to qualify’. Straight away I came across my degree, Counselling and Psychotherapy, and fell in love with how Edge Hill in particular cover the subject in a person-centred way with a huge focus on professional practice and work experience. Throughout my first year and half of my second year, I continued working in my digital marketing role part-time to support myself before deciding to work as a support worker for adults with learning disabilities early in 2020.
As you can see, I’ve moved backwards and forwards through my digital marketing career with breaks to work in retail/foreign exchange in between before deciding to retrain as a psychotherapist by returning to full-time education as an adult. Even whilst studying I have moved jobs in order to better align with my long term goals and feel more fulfilled in my work. I came to Edge Hill aged 23 and will leave next summer at the age of 26 with a CV that would be about 5 pages long if I included everything! The message? Once again…it is NEVER too late and you are NEVER too old.
This Tuesday is Edge Hill’s annual careers awards! This event is the 10th anniversary of the awards which are organised by the Careers team here at Edge Hill. This event is to celebrate the achievements of students over the past year, as well as recognising the employers and organisations who have helped students through part time jobs, work experience and volunteering!
The night is a really lovely event, as alumni get to return to Edge Hill, see old tutors and see how the university has changed throughout the university.
There are lots of oppurtunities for students to win awards, The Student Employee of the Year Awards have been split into three categories; those who work for the Students’ Union, students who work on the University campus, and students who work for an external organisation. These awards are brilliant for adding to your cv.
If you were not aware of the awards this year then make sure you keep an eye out for nominations next year as you could nominate your employer for an award! Also, if you work for the university you can nominate the department you work for!
One of the amazing things about this company in particular is that they are all either Edge Hill alumni (graduates) or lecturers at Edge Hill. I had the opportunity to speak to them all about what their experiences were like and what Edge Hill has given them as performers. I first asked them to introduce themselves and the character they played:
RM: Rachael Mutch, playing the character of Holly.
KHC: Kylie Heron-Cadwallader, playing the role of Susan.
SR: Sam Rushton, playing the role of Sam.
LAD: Lisa Adams-Davey, I play Doctor W and the Vicar, and I am the Director.
JB: James Burrows, and I play the character of Phil.
DHJ: Danielle Holland-Jones, stage manager.
EC: Elric Cadwallader, I play the character of CP.
CR: Christopher Roy, I played Richard.
CF: And Cat Formby, playing Mo/Double Gusset.
Rhiannon Thomas (me): Ok, right, so the first thing I wanted to ask is; you tackle really sensitive subjects, obviously, not just for this show, I’ve seen for your show They Shoot Dogs, that’s obviously another sensitive subject. What was your main motivation to create such pieces and do you ever hit a block in the creative process whilst assuring the topics are handled correctly?
LAD: Well, the main motivation has been a research initiative, in the first instance, then from the initial research initiative we created the company with a view to tackling subjects, such as… well, with a view to tackling mental health, and we feel that the work that we put on is politically charged, it’s relevant, it needs to be heard, and yes it’s very sensitive, as you say, very sensitive… but necessary in order to support people, to generate an understanding as to what it’s like to have a mental health condition. So, that’s the main thing really, was a research initiative of mine, and I’ve taught all these wonderful people, and we work together on relevant topics, such as Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, Clinical Depression, Suicide… Often topics, well, they are topics that are surrounded by stigma, and it’s about getting rid of that stigma and saying ‘hey, you know what, this is real, people do take their own lives, people do suffer with depression, people do suffer with anxiety, bipolar disorder, and so on and so forth, post-traumatic stress disorder, and this is reality’. And it’s relevant, it’s important. And it’s also to say, you know, it’s ok to talk about it, it’s important that we do talk about it, cause so much is swept under the carpet and we don’t want that.
RT: Ok, bit more of a trivial question, describe the Rose Theatre and Edge Hill Arts Centre in 3 words, cause I’ve seen that most of you are graduates…
EC: In three words?
EC: It’s our home.
LAD: It’s our home!
RT: Ok, so again, because a lot of you are graduates…
LAD: All of them are graduates.
RT: Ah ok, all of you are graduates [laughter]… do you think the courses here and the University gives you what you need to follow a creative career path?
CR: Damn skippy it does.
SR: I think it’s hard to put a definitive answer on that question, cause courses are ever fluctuating and ever changing, from my personal perspective it gave me the most amazing grounding in who I am as a practitioner, who I am as a person, and it gave me everything I needed to be an independent, forward-thinking, critical analyst. It gave me all the skills that I needed to take my own practice and take my own place in the world and my own place in the industry and it gave me a great springboard for that as well as making magic… This place is an amazing place; the supportive tutors, the facilities, it’s ever developing, ever expanding and I think in an industry that’s ever developing and ever expanding that’s really important from a University course and a University as well.
EC: Considering how big the course is now and how it expanded, like all the different things you can do, you can do musical theatre and you can do all these other things that weren’t available when we were first coming here, we’re so shocked that you can come here and you just say ‘I’m an ex-student’ they will give you a room and say you can rehearse in there, you can use the resources…
LAD: It’s very generous.
EC: So, like, they’ll do anything for alumni, for current students, they’ll bend over backwards to say ‘we’ll look at the set’ and, you know, where you are, and the techies are fantastic.
LAD: I think what’s been really interesting within this project is even though this is an alumni company, we’ve been employed as a professional company to come in and produce this work, on top of that we have had the facilities to rehearse in, and I know I’m a member of staff, but it is a privilege to have that, because actually it’s very expensive to hire rehearsal rooms, and technicians and, you know, all the things that we have here, and it’s a real privilege, and these guys have put in an inordinate amount of time to make it happen as well.
CF: Can I just say something about the beginning of that question? When you said, and what I find interesting, I did Dance, Drama and Physical Theatres here, and then I went on to Drama School, which was more of a Conservatoire training, and the course was an MA in Professional Acting, and what I was surprised at; there was nothing that came up in that course that I hadn’t been told about, studied, or researched, or touched on, or done a workshop on, you know? There were things that we explored further in voice and that kind of stuff, but there was nothing that I wasn’t aware of, I didn’t feel on a back foot about anything, and there was a massive contrast for me in the quality of the tutors here to the tutors there. Whilst I was there in that 15 months, there were 2 tutors from here came to do workshops at that drama school and I’d been banging on about this place to the point of boring everybody, and I was delighted that two of the tutors, the physical theatre tutor and a dance tutor, both came there to deliver workshops, and I’d banged on about how great they were and I don’t think my peers there were expecting to be blown away. But they were, and the contrast in the teaching, the quality, the workshop just stuck out like a sore thumb.
SR: Yeah, I’d agree with Cathy, I went to drama school to do my Masters in London as well, and everything Cathy’s just said was exactly the same as when I went to drama school to do my MA after being here. It just gave me everything that I needed before I even got there, and when I got there it meant that I could just run, and two of the tutors here also went to Central School of Speech and Drama, where I was, to give workshops or be actual lecturers there as well, so this place is really rich.
LAD: Yeah, I think the one thing that we do hold dear, I mean, as a lecturer here, the one thing that we hold dear is the fact that we actually educate thinking practitioners, and that’s really important, and that’s why when you’re putting work on such as this, I do expect my cast to think and to analyse, and to evaluate; what is it we’re doing and why are we doing it… and they’ve had that from day dot, they’ve had that from when they walked in the door at Edge Hill. I remember… Sam and Elric were in the first cohort [I taught], I remember asking Elric, you know, what made you choose Edge Hill? Why didn’t you go to Drama School? And he said I specifically chose Edge Hill because I wanted an education, I didn’t want a Conservatoire training, I wanted an education, I wanted to think about my subject and really analyse it. It’s not good enough, I don’t think, just to be able to perform; you have to do all the other stuff as well, and really that’s invaluable to here, I believe, and to what we provide. I suppose it’s that’s very immodest for me to say that as a lecturer here [laughter], but it’s something that we do hold dear.
CR: I’ll back that up with; I agree with everything that Lisa has just said.
KHC: Yeah I agree [laughter]. Going back to your question, not only has it helped in, you know, a creative setting, but I work as a legal secretary as well, so giving you the confidence to get up on stage also gives you the confidence to interact with people in every day life, and they’re the people that we’re trying to portray when we’re onstage. We’re not portraying, like, an airy-fairy, fluffy version of life, especially with this piece, we’re looking at what makes people tick. So, in my everyday life, I work in a solicitors, so I get to see everything, you know, from birth, life, marriage, death, everything. So, it’s nice to be part of life at the same time and have those social skills to talk to people, which I’ve received from here. I’ve got that confidence from training as an actor, and then it sort of gives back; anything that I see in life, I can take that in like a sponge and portray that on the stage, so these skills are transferrable as well, cause not only do we learn about our craft, about acting, performing… to portray the human race, you have to understand about human psychology, philosophy, theology… so not only do you open up your skill-set as an actor through creative tools, you also touch upon other areas of education, so not picking on people who go “drama, that’s where you just run around the room”…
LAD: “Jazz hands!” [laughter]
KHC: It’s not just about that, we have to understand the human condition…
SR: And how to connect with another human being, fundamentally, how you connect, and get a reaction out of another human being, whatever their reaction is. Going back to Lisa’s answer about why we do this, it’s because it is an awareness, it is opening a dialogue, it is, when I was speaking to yourself before, about using theatre as a catalyst to make you think what you’ve got from that, and everybody’s opinions are valid, but that fundamental connection is really, really important.
LAD: I think also going back to what Kylie said there, you know, one of the things that we do focus on [is] employability skills, so this company itself offers employability to certain graduates who are appropriate for the company. When we did [They Shoot] Dogs I did an audition, two days of auditions to get the cast together, and then from that cast and that production, Confiança was born, and we’ve done a few other things since then. This is our second major production, but we have done other projects. And so it’s kind of… those employability skills that you were talking about, that are developed as a student, they’re absolutely invaluable, in any walk of life, not just on the stage as you say Kylie, in any walk of life; if you’re a lecturer, just as a person… You know, there’s a few lecturers in and amongst us, a few people working in different professions, etc.
CR: I just wanna put out there, I’m now also teaching Drama, and I certainly would not be doing that if it weren’t for Edge Hill. And even aspects of my own teaching practise I may have, I’m gonna use the word ‘stolen’ [laughter], I have done lessons that Lisa taught me.
RM: I have too.
CR: Yeah, Rach does as well, we all do, we all…
RM: And James’ lessons, I take them all! [laughter]
CR: But, you know, and it’s that sort of thing, the fact that I’m able to go ‘right, I learnt that here at this time, with Lisa as a lecturer or someone else as a lecturer’, and I’ve been able to then transfer that and repeat it, it’s meaning it’s stayed with me, and that’s what I want my students to be like, I want them to think for themselves, I want them to do their own research, I want them to be actively engaged with whatever text that they have, whether it be something that they’re devising or something that has been written down for centuries, I want them to have the experience that I had here, but a couple of years early.
LAD: Yeah, I think also, one thing that I feel does transfer is the passion for the subject that Edge Hill has. All the subjects actually, the lecturers, we’re very, very passionate about what we do, and hopefully that transfers to the students, and then they go out and they go ‘yeah, this is really exciting! We’re really excited about this, so let’s do some more!’.
EC: I’d also like to say, as well, that not only the content, but the people you meet, it’s kind of testament to that way in which we work collaboratively, that years after we’ve graduated, in different years as well, you meet people on your course here that you can collaborate with, and that you can work professionally with in the future as well, and I think that’s important.
DHJ: I think, going back to your initial question about the courses, it’s the fact that, because I studied Musical Theatre, I would never think when I graduated that this would be the sort of thing that I would be doing, but that’s because Edge Hill makes you transferrable, skill-wise, as an actor, performer… whatever you want to do, they will facilitate what you want to do, and they focus on what you really want to do on your outcome, like what kind of journey you want to take, because it’s different for everyone. People take years out before they even think about going back in to doing it, and that’s what I thought I was gonna do, and I’ve literally just graduated and I’ve gone straight back into doing the work that I love doing, and it was a privilege, but also it’s the fact that you can just go straight back into it and it’s not the fact of you have to go somewhere else, or you have to do your Master, no offence [laughter], and it’s kind of being able to go ‘do you know what, I don’t have to box myself off as a performer in one specific area, I can be versatile’, and that’s what Edge Hill, I think, is great for personally.
SR: Yeah, just to add to that before we actually move on to the next question, when I was here, I graduated, well myself and Elric, graduated in 2008, and when I was doing my dissertation here, there was no Aerial course, there was no Musical Theatre, there was not much, there was Drama, Dance and Physical Theatre, straight Drama and then a few people on a straight Dance course…
LAD: It didn’t stop you doing Aerial in your dissertation!
SR: No, for my dissertation, I wanted different levels, and I wanted to do some Aerial work, and nobody had ever heard of, well, nobody had ever done anything like that here before, and so I went to Lisa, and Lisa went to the appropriate channels, and we had discussions, and because it was relevant to my practise and it was relevant to my dissertation, the department got in one silk, a rig, and everything that I needed to be able to have Aerial performance as a part of my dissertation, and then I also went and did some workshops and training so I was safe to do it. Following on from that, they then did an Aerial module and they’re still doing it now, so even though I came to them before that was even anything that they offered at all, they gave me and provided me with what I needed because it was relevant to my practise.
LAD: One of the things that the company have also done, that maybe you’re not aware of, that actually Edge Hill have supported, they’re still invited in to do things and to work collaboratively, for example with [the] Faculty of Health, we’ve done television masterclasses with a television director and a casting director, and we’ve collaborated with media on that, so on so forth, so opportunities are given to our alumni, and also one of our guys who was filming tonight [there were some people filming the opening show on the Thursday] is a Media student, so that’s an employability opportunity for him, and I was really keen for them to get a third camera in, and I was really keen for them to get a student involved because that’s just another opportunity to enhance that person’s skills.
RT: So, a bit of a short, snappy last question; describe your show in 3 words.
CR: A hilarious play about suicide.
CAST: That’s not 3 words! [laughter]
KHC: Comical… tragic…
LAD: [whispers] Relevant… [laughter]
KHC: … Relevant [more laughter]
Overall, the cast gave me some great reasons why Edge Hill helps performers to thrive, and some interesting insight into their own personal experiences, as well as being lovely to talk to and very funny! I would like to thank them here for this and staying back after their performance so that I could speak to them, even though they were probably tired! Some of the creative team were not involved in this Q&A, so I will list the others below and say congratulations on such a brilliant show:
Mark Curtis: Playwright
Lighting Design and Operation: Dave Forrest
Psychotherapist in Residence: Cathy Vincent
Psychotherapist Supervisor for Lisa Adams-Davey: Janet Higgins
Ethics Advisor: Vicky Karkou
Filming: Alistair Emmett, Daniel Hall and Owen Wheeler
Hey all, hope you’re having a great weekend so far.
I wanted to make a post on the many job opportunities in and around Edge Hill, as I think it’ll be of interest to a lot of people, especially if you’re self funding your course or living costs. One of the things I love the most about the Uni is how many opportunities there really are. I can’t talk about every single one here in this post, but I’m going to shed some light on some of the ones that I think most people will be able to apply for:
Student guides: this is one of the main jobs you can apply for at the Uni. The role of the student guides is extensive, but for a short little summary, they staff and help with the open days and other such events for the University, help guide visitors, ensure the smooth running of these events, and are basically the student face of the University. You have to attend a group interview, but it’s not half as scary as you might think when you hear the word “interview”, I even had a few laughs in mine cause the people were so lovely and funny. During the Freshers’ Fayre, there was a table last year in which you could apply for an interview, so keep a look out if you would like to apply for this. It is an excellent thing to put on your CV!
Departmental helpers: similar to Student Guides, these help with the smooth running of things at the University during events- more so open days, but there are the odd days where you can come in handy too. I became a helper for the Performing Arts department (you will probably be based in the department you’re studying with, as it’s what you know personally and the most logical place for you to help out) as I had not gotten the Student Guide job, and even though I didn’t apply for it exactly, I’m glad for the experience it’s given me! I was contacted to help as I’d done the Guide interview, which is great, as Edge Hill really try and get you experience wherever they can. I’ve found being a departmental helper to be a lot more suited to me actually, as I’ve not only been working and getting paid to get experience (a source of income is always super helpful as a student), but I’ve been speaking to people who are interested in the same things as me, and have even spent some open days doing clowning and juggling, which is always fun! It’s the best when you can enjoy a work day.
On-campus jobs: there are various jobs that you will get emailed about by the Careers centre that are on campus. One example is working in the McColls shop in the Hub, or recently, there has been a huge boost for people to apply for jobs in the brand new on-campus Subway! I always like to check these emails, as they send out emails on all kinds of jobs that would be suitable for all kinds of people!
Other emailed jobs: the career centre will also put in these emails any appropriate jobs for students in and around the Edge Hill and Ormskirk area. So keep your eye out!
Of course, in and around Ormskirk there are also always gonna be places you can ask to give your CV in, just like in any town, all you’ve got to do is take a proactive leap in doing it! It’s so useful to have an income other than your student finance, especially in your first year when you’re working out your budgeting and living costs.
I hope this gave you a bit of an idea of things you can get involved with! Feel free to drop me any questions in the comments, and I hope you have a good end to your Saturday!
As I’m sure you’ve been told many times before, your CV is an important document, and making sure it is well fleshed out is part of what makes a good CV. Any volunteering or part time work will show commitment, as well as any skills you’ve picked up along the way. These could be specialised (relating to your job, like for instance, waiting tables) or generalised (things such as teamwork and responsibility). In any case, you should have numerous opportunities to further bolster your CV throughout your time at Edge Hill University.
The Careers Centre on campus, currently located in the Student Information Centre (SIC), can provide assistance in acquiring a part-time job in the surrounding areas whilst at university, through the use of lists of availabilities; insight into the best places and websites to check for openings; and interview tips. Additionally, they can also help with finding volunteer work. For example, Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust have a centre called the Martin Mere Wetland Centre that accepts volunteers to assist with various aspects of their conservation work, from helping in the visitor centre to maintaining the grounds.
To make sure you get some basic help with CVs and future prospects, someone from the Careers Centre comes into a lecture once or twice a year, to provide that vital information. Then you can, of course, book an appointment with a Careers Advisers for a one to one, more personal, conversation about where your future is headed.
Accompanying the campus Careers Centre, there is the careers centre website. The website has many features, from “ask a question” where you can get feedback on your CV, amongst other things, to the lists of resources and opportunities – some of which are at Edge Hill themselves.
There are numerous opportunities at Edge Hill for part time work, I myself have worked for both the Money Advice Team and the Student Recruitment Team, as well as being part of the Student Casual Bank. Then there is also the chance to work on open days, applicant visit days, and giving campus tours to prospective students throughout the year.
In short, Edge Hill provides many ways to better yourself and have that show on your CV, whilst providing you with the tools to make sure your career is heading in the direction that you want it to.
Edge Hill University hosts many events throughout the year, the one you’ve most likely been to already is the Open Day, which I couldn’t recommend enough. Once you start studying at EHU, you might think that these would get annoying or get in the way of you just trying to live your life on campus – but I’ve found that they really don’t! If anything, they provide you with some unique opportunities (as well as free ice cream)! If you live on campus, there’s the option to open your room/corridor to visitors so that they can have a glance at what future accommodation they might be living in – this is a paid role, and you have to be present the whole time this is going on, so I would recommend it if you need a little extra cash. Students are also vital in making sure the open day runs smoothly, directing prospective students around and supplying information when needed – again, a paid causal role.
Many fairs are held at EHU, one type being the careers fair. They can be general or course-specific (ie. nursing), volunteer-focused, or aimed at future graduates. These are held by the Career’s Centre throughout the year, but some usually coincide with specific times like #NationalCareersWeek.
Fresher’s and Re-Fresher’s Fair
An iconic event, Fresher’s Fair is your introduction to the societies and sports clubs at EHU, but lesser known is Re-Freshers Fair… which is exactly what you’d expect – Fresher’s Fair 2.0. It is a useful event though – personally I signed up for far too many societies and clubs during my first fresher’s week that I couldn’t commit to; Re-Fresher’s allowed me to revisit and reassess which societies and clubs I wanted to be a part of, signing up for some new ones in the process.
Feel Good Festival
An event that took place on #UniMentalHealthDay was the Feel Good Festival (again, an event that you may have the opportunity to work during if you are keen). This was a wonderful day that featured a bouncy castle, a petting zoo, and many other activities. In the same week, the SU also had guide dogs in the QUAD as part of the StressedOutStudents campaign.
The very first Pride occurred at EHU this year! A week-long event, featuring different activities on each day aimed at celebrating and educating. I wrote a whole post dedicated to the week, here.
Chinese New Year
The Confucius Institute at EHU put on a street market in The Hub (including Chinese music, traditional Chinese dress and calligraphy lessons) as well as stalls in The Arts Centre and a show that included Chinese kung fu and martial arts demonstrations, folk dances and musical performances using traditional Chinese instruments.
International Women’s Day
From Edge Hill’s beginnings as England’s first women’s teacher training college to this year’s partnership with Liverpool Geek Girls, EHU celebrated International Women’s day around campus. #BeBoldForChange
Of course, this is just touching the surface! There are many more events held at Edge Hill over the year, big and small. Just keep your eyes on EHU’s social media and you’ll be in the know. Oh, and one final tip – don’t do your laundry on an Open Day, carrying your clothes through a few crowds across campus is not fun!
University is not just useful for gaining a degree, it offers you support and opportunities to really make your CV stand out and give you a real edge when you graduate. However, it is up to you to take advantage of these opportunities and go out and find them. This can prove a bit difficult to get your head around, believe me, I’ve only just figured out how to make the most of the support I have at uni! So I thought for this week’s post I’d give you some tips on how to look for and take advantage of the wonderful prospects available to you.
Ask your personal tutor
Although universities have a wealth of opportunities you won’t just be handed them on a plate, you often have to express interest. Ask your personal tutor if they know of any work experience or other opportunities that are available for someone studying your degree or your particular area of interest. Once you express an interest in these activities your tutor will be in more of a position to help you.
Visit the careers centre
One of the best ways to find out about what experience you can gain is by visiting the careers centre. Edge Hill’s careers centre is located in the Student Information Centre (SIC). You can book an appointment with one of the career advisers using the careers centre link on the Edge Hill website. They can talk you through what you can do to gain experience and knowledge in your field. They can also help you optimise your CV and answer any other career-based questions you have.
Create your own opportunities
However, there’s nothing stopping you from creating your own opportunities. Want to be a writer? Start a literary magazine. Want to be an entrepreneur? Design a product to sell. Want to work in theatre? Do what my friends and I did and create your own theatre company. Your tutors are there for advice and support so you speak to them about your ideas and perhaps it’s easier than you think it is to do what you want to do.
In a previous blog (here) I discussed how getting a job is one way to earn money whilst at university. With the cost of going to university being quite expensive (especially if you want to go to university down south) many students these days find themselves having to get a job. Jobs for students tend generally to come in two forms – paid and voluntary.
Paid vs Voluntary
Paid work is good because as it suggests you are financially rewarded for the work you do, and students like this because it helps to pay for things like course materials, food, rent, nights out and other common student expenditures. It also looks good on your CV when it comes to getting a different job (possibly with more hours) after university, for those who don’t want to go onto to do a post-graduate degree straight away (the route I’ve opted to go down).
However, paid work isn’t the only option for students when it comes to getting a job, and indeed experience. Other students find themselves volunteering and whilst this doesn’t offer financial rewards, it can lead onto paid work later on in some instances and employers like it because it shows you’re willing to put yourself out there and help out a particular cause (most voluntary work tends to be for charities and other not for profit organisations).
Looking for work
As I know all too well there are lots of ways to look for work, for instance lots of vacancies are advertised online, there’s vacancies advertised in shop/business windows and someone may even tell you about a role they’ve seen advertised or know about. One of the best ways to look for job whilst at university though is the careers service, who will help you look for work (voluntary or paid, depending on which you feel you can fit best around your studies), check your CV (so employers don’t just throw it in the ‘no’ pile) and assist with filling in applications.
For those of you wanting to make use of the edge hill careers service whilst at Edge Hill, and want to learn more about them, you can do so by clicking on the hyperlink above 🙂
Over the past few weeks, since finishing my course I have been spending my time wisely in that I have been looking for and applying for jobs within the health care sector and likewise with apprenticeships, as I feel an apprenticeship maybe easier to get for the short-to medium term than a job. Whilst I have had a rejection, not heard back from another and am still waiting to hear about a position I have applied for within the NHS I am pleased to say I have got two interviews! The first is next Wednesday and this is for a job that involves helping to improve the quality of life for people in Blackburn (a town in east Lancashire that I can get to on the bus back home) with learning disabilities. The other is for an apprenticeship in a care assistant role which involves caring for the elderly. Whilst I may not get either position, there are other ones in the pipeline (that I have applied for) and it’s just a case of persevering. This kind of thing is definitely a “Some you win, some you lose” type situation. Some I might not hear back from, some I might get a rejection for, some I might get an interview for but not get called back but one job or apprenticeship out there will be the one I end up doing.
One thing that has really been helping me in all this though (besides the support of my family back home) is Edge Hill Career’s Service. I have been to see them more times since finishing my degree than I ever did during my studies. I have mentioned them a few times before in previous posts but they really are helpful for things like checking your CV, applying for jobs, giving interview tips and advice and other career related matters.If you want to check them out, then the links to their Facebook page and Edge Hill page are below 🙂
I think when it comes to picking a career path we are all a little bit lost. Well, I am, and to make myself feel better I’m going to say that you are too. I’ve been thinking a lot recently about what to do after uni. Sooner or later I’m going to have to start getting some plans together and that worries me haha.
The last time I knew what I wanted to do was year 8, when I was adamant I was going to be a secondary school history teacher. But things change, and somewhere between my 12 year old self and now I fell out of love with history.
I’m currently undertaking a BA Honours degree in Sociology (which is no doddle). The workload in uni is challenging and if I could give you one tip, it would be to work out referencing before you come. Believe me, you’ll thank me later and no doubt hate Harvard referencing for the rest of your life. I believe Sociology will open doors to a range of different career paths and I’m hoping that by the time I graduate, I will either know, or have a better idea of which path to take.