Posted by: lucy. | March 15, 2011

The BIG Balancing Act!

As I am only in my mere second year of university (and having taken no gap year) I do not have the wealth of experience that some of my fellow bloggers have with regard to careers and applications. 

However I do sympathise with all of you out there who are currently in the process of trying to plan the perfect summer. How does that have anything to do with ‘Careering Ahead’, I hear you ask. Well… having enjoyed my 4 months (!!) off last summer, I now realise how long a holiday us students have to enjoy.

And this is where the ‘careers’ stuff comes in; right now I am trying to strike balance in my summer holiday plans. So naturally I want:

  • All those holidays (I’m thinking Paris… Australia… Maybe the Lake District if I’m lucky!) 
  • To get some actual work experience within an industry I’m interested in, to see whether it‘s my thing or not.
  • To maybe do some volunteering work, either at home or abroad.
  • And finally (and most importantly in my case) a way of  funding all of the above?! Getting a paid job is an essential part of my summer holiday.

For law students like me the bigger firms all offer formal vacation placements during the summer. However, the deadlines for those applications passed months ago…  And in any case such schemes are ridiculously competitive! So what else can you do to fill up that all important CV?? You will get bored of hearing it (If you haven’t already) but it’s all about who you know! So get asking you mum, dad, brother, sister, auntie, uncle, family friends, the neighbour’s dog… well you get the picture! Another really useful resource is Graduate Connections run by the Careers Service. You never know where one little email will take you; it’s all about putting yourself out there! Even if it’s only for a few days, it might really help you in the long run. In terms of getting paid work during the summer months, you might want to look for seasonal businesses that will be busy and in need of extra staff during the school holidays. Such jobs will develop your transferable skills etc!

 So there you go, something to get busy with! It’s really easy to sit back and presume summer plans will just take shape around you (I did that last year!). THEY DON’T! Especially if you want more out of your summer than a week in Magaluf… But then again you could make some great connections during that week… Maybe not of benefit to your career though…! So come on; Get planning!

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