Making The Most Of Higher Education

Deciding whether to continue with education after the compulsory age is a big decision. As a student you face the prospects of high tuition fees and little money to spend, yet you'll be working towards a recognisable qualification that could land you your dream job. Leaving education to enter the world of work means you're more likely to have more money in the short-term but your career progression may be limited. Jobs aren't currently plentiful and there are millions of people unemployed. If you've decided you want to continue with education you need to make the most of your time spent learning as graduate jobs are extremely competitive and there only a limited number of positions available.

Degrees and higher education qualifications definitely are mandatory for some jobs and are a great advantage for others. But you won't be the only person with a degree in the particular subject area so you need to make sure you stand out from the rest of the applicants by possessing other employable qualities. One of the major advantages is to have hands-on experience within your career path.

Gaining Experience

You can gain experience within your industry in a number of different ways. Some courses offer work placements which enable scholars to attend work for one or two days a week to gain the hands-on experience as part of the programme of study. Often the company would offer a reference at the end of the year too, to use when applying for future positions.

Another method of gaining experience whilst studying is to volunteer. This can be beneficial if you focus on volunteering in the industry/position within your chosen career path. It also adds value to your character, showing that you're willing to help others. Voluntary positions are often very flexible so you can always fit your work around your study and choose how many hours you would like to work.

Part-time work is incredibly popular among students as it supplements your income along with student loans and bursaries. Part-time work is widely available and many temporary positions emerge in the months before Christmas. You can gain valuable work experience, even if it isn't within your chosen career path, it helps you to get an idea of what working life entails. Have a look on some online recruitment websites and select "part-time" when searching.

Use Your Free Time Wisely

As a student you generally get a long period of holiday time in the summer months - you may never get this much free time ever again. Why not use it as a fantastic opportunity to travel and see parts of the world you've never seen before? If you don't have the financial backing to do this for free don't worry! Many major ski resorts seek English speaking employees for various different roles in the wintertime. Not only will you get to have the time of your life, meet new friends and see different parts of the world, you also gain valuable work experience, possibly within your chosen sector.

Utilising further education ensures that you're gaining the valuable experience needed to make you a competitive candidate once you enter the job market. With recent headlines detailing the extent of competitiveness for graduate jobs, you need to gain as much experience as you can to land that dream job.

Written by Stephanie Staszko on behalf of Blue Octopus flat fee recruitment this post was originally published on The Exam Result and can be found here

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