Life as a Graduate | One Year On

Although my graduation ceremony wasn’t until November (last year), it was just over a year ago that I officially completed my degree and my three years away at University. University for me was a life changing experience: I learnt soo much, both academically and non-academically, I made some amazing friends, who I’m sure I’ll have for a very long time, and I grew as a person too. But although I have so many stories from my time in university, I thought that I would share what this last year has been like for me. The first year as a graduate – and whether it was what I expected and if I am where I thought I would be.

graduation-girls

Answering simply I can tell you that the answer is no – It has not been as I expected and I’m not in the position that I hoped to be in, but I’ve come to learn that it’s ok.

In the last month or so of my time at university, I was constantly searching and applying for jobs – looking for the perfect graduate position for me. I didn’t know exactly what I wanted (and part of me still doesn’t) so I was applying for a range of things that interested me. By the time I had to move out of my accommodation, I still didn’t have a job, so it meant moving home. That was difficult for me, especially after seeing a lot of my close friends finding jobs and moving into places of their own. 

A few months passed at home and I continued to daily apply for jobs. I had quite a few interviews – and with that rejections – which were difficult at times, but still nothing cam up. By the time September rolled around, and the “summer holidays” were over, I decided that I needed to find a job – whatever it was. 

It wasn’t until November that I got a part time retail position close to where I live, and that is where I still am today. It’s not that I don’t enjoy the job – because I do – but it isn’t what I want to spend my life doing. 

People also say that the year you graduate is one of the best opportunities to go travelling, and although this is something I wanted to do and would have loved, I haven’t done any travelling this year. 

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I think for me the most difficult parts of the last year have been moving home, lack of purpose/destination and the cycle of experience and rejections. 

Moving home in itself isn’t the bad thing – I think it is just that fact that I have to go back to relying on my parents – I’ve lost some of my sense of freedom and independence. My house is also very crowded – with my sister and niece also having to move back in shortly after me, so there is not a lot of space to breathe or have “quiet time”. 

Throughout school and further education I was always knowingly working towards something – towards doing well in exams, towards graduating – but since graduating, I have lost a bit of my sense of purpose. There feels like I have nothing to work towards, which I know isn’t true – because I have a career and a future to work towards – but with no obvious path, it’s difficult to comprehend. 

There is also the cycle of receiving a rejection because you don’t have enough experience, then questioning how, if no-one will give you a chance, you are supposed to get the required experience. For me it seems to be a never ending cycle.

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What’s Next?

Even though I have a job, I have still regularly been searching and applying for things that are a more long term goal – a full time job (for starters) in a profession where I can use the knowledge I gained from my degree, and where I can do something different. 

Also within the next month or so, I am hoping to find somewhere where I can gain some volunteer work experience. A professional environment where I can observe and get involved in the profession I would love a future in. It is probably something I should have done sooner – but I am hoping I will find somewhere I can manage around my current job, but still learn and gain the experience I need. 

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I realise that I may have ended up rambling here a bit, so I apologise for that, but I wanted to give you a bit of an insight into the last year and what’s going on in my life. I also realise that this is quite different to my recent posts, but I hope you liked it regardless.

I’d also love to hear other people’s thoughts on this, whether you are a recent university graduate or not. 

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2 thoughts on “Life as a Graduate | One Year On

  1. Hey lovely!
    Great post 💜 I feel you!
    I graduated back in 2013, and it took me an entire year before I was able to secure a graduate position.
    And even after I was a graduate for 2 years – I realized I disliked my job – and this year I left the industry, found another job and started from the bottom again.

    I guess what I’m trying to say is – this is all just a part of the experience. Just keep on going. You’ll land something eventually – as long as you keep paving yourself opportunities. 💜 but even once you do. It’s far from end game. ☺️☺️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for your comment. It’s so nice knowing that people have been through it too.

      I suppose I know deep down that something will come up eventually, even if it isn’t end goal, but just in this moment it feels so far away. But definitely just need to keep going! ☺

      Liked by 1 person

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