June is an unforgettable mouth for most of students which means the third-year students will graduate from the university. As students approach the end of their degree, one question becomes ever-more pressing: what next? For most students they have many choice: finding jobs, further study and other options.
For most students, looking to move directly from university into paid employment is good news and bad news. While the Association of Graduate Recruiters’ (AGR) survey 2015 proudly announced an increase in graduate vacancies for the third year running, the announcement was swiftly followed by news from the Institute of Fiscal Studies that salaries for young people are now lower than they were in 2008. Perhaps money isn’t terribly important anyway. Oliver Connor, aged 24, will graduate from Teesside University this June. Now he is looking for in his first job. The Marketing Management graduate says, “I consider what sort of responsibility I would get from the job, and I am looking for a job that would use my skills and bring challenging experiences. Wage is a factor, but work experience is more important.”
A postgraduate degree or professional qualification can open the door to a more highly-paid and, importantly, a more rewarding career. But fees incurred in studying for a Master degree may deter some already burdened by student debt. Mike Wang, aged 23, a student comes from China, wants to apply Sheffield University. He says, “I would like to further my study in the UK, but the tuition for the master is a bit high. But with loan, bursaries and research funding more readily available, I believe that the return on investment can be significant, especially when employability is increased. I think there are some of the careers where a master degree offer real advantages.”
There are also other options after graduated, such as volunteering and travelling. Whether in the UK or further afield, volunteering can be a fantastic way to gain new skills, experiences and give something back. Hellen McLellan, aged 23, Education graduate says, “I have apply the volunteer for the project of Helping-Children. I will go to Tanzania and Nicaragua to be a volunteer. I’m excited and nervous because I never leave my country before. I would like to contact different people and deal with different cultures, more importantly, helping children makes my life meaningful, and it’s will be the excellent experiences.”
Whatever your graduate destination—work, study or other options—plan as early as possible, and arm yourself with as much information as you can.