As the first semester of my final year rolled itself out, I was faced with all the normal start of term challenges: which seminar times to pick, how to get to uni from my new house and what array of pens and folders would most intimidate my classmates. However, as I receive no financial support from my parents while I’m studying, I was also faced with the more daunting question of “How on earth am I going to feed myself this year?”
This has been a battle every year for me. As a fresher I opted for the hope-for-the-best option, and ended up thousands of pounds in debt to the bank. In second year I tried my hardest to find employment somewhere that would also provide good work experience, with limited success. I dabbled in the role of Brand Ambassador, but my employers were not up to scratch and I ended up earning very little money.
With graduation on the horizon this year, and either ‘The Real World’ or postgraduate study suddenly looking awfully close, I am torn between easy cash and valuable experience. Do I try to find the first menial job that comes along offering to pay me in actual money, or opt for the more gruelling task of a paid work-experience placement?
After spending the summer volunteering my bank balance is looking rather dry, so the first option seems awfully attractive. However, my head, my pride and my mother are all encouraging me to at least try for the latter. Currently I’m applying for every job under the sun, only stopping short of sending applications to be a Christmas Elf (and I have even been tempted by that), so surely I’ll get responses from something? Watch this space…