I’m Charlotte and I went to Tollbar. Although I did a lot of GCSE’s I felt I was lacking life experience and exposure to the working environment.
I was unsure what to do after my GCSE’s. I looked at apprenticeships but found that the lower level ones were very limited and gendered like health and beauty or mechanical engineering.
All my friends were going to Franklin I wasn’t sure it was really my kind of thing- going to study with a pencil and notebook; I wanted to get under the skin of things.
I looked into the kind of jobs I could get without higher education but there was hardly any progression. I knew that higher education would allow me more opportunities in the long term.
I didn’t want to close doors for myself when I had the chance to do further study and regret it later on.
Franklin put on trips to Uni and I went to York, Leeds, Lincoln and Manchester.
I picked Lincoln because it had a nice feel to it and the business and marketing course was good. The building I would be studying in was new and it was a clean city. I found accommodation that I liked whereas Manchester seemed too hectic.
I knew it was important to feel comfortable, there would be a lot of new things at Uni and I didn’t want to dampen it by picking somewhere I didn’t like living.
I wanted to branch out from the student bubble so I got a job working at a pub and made good friends there.
I had enough funds to go Interrailing throughout the first and second summer of Uni and in the third summer I went to Thailand. It was a great experience and I was more comfortable
Applying for graduate schemes and going to assessment days was daunting but I ended up getting my first job by putting my C.V. online.
My degree was useful to me finding work but my work ethic and problem solving skills were also important. Employers are looking for someone with a degree but also with the right attitude.
It was difficult at first to feel confident about what I wanted as a career path. There are so many options.
I wanted to get work in another area so I started temping at ENGIE to get experience being in office. The department was lovely and I enjoyed the work.
I did business support for one and half years which was great for building confidence and gaining practical, useful skills. A job came up internally which I got and am very happy in.
Don’t worry about finding your dream job straight away, many degree’s offer a broad range of career paths. I would encourage any grad to do some business support work; it is helpful in almost every working environment.
I am comfortable in my role as a project officer but it’s learning curve, wouldn’t have been able to speak to stakeholders, it’s a learning curve, didn’t have confidence.
Go to Uni, get experience and skills alongside your studies, take all the opportunities you can for social events, travelling and learning new skills.