The way education is perceived has changed over the past few years. The main purpose of education today is to equip students with the practical skills needed to cope with the new work trends, or fields of activity.
Everything Starts with the Right Type of Education!
The decision on the subjects that make up your A-levels is not to be made in haste or just for the sake of doing the A-levels. Higher matters are at stake. Time is also very important, as you never get it back – so plan your education as carefully and as early as possible!
Luckily, hasty decisions can still be amended thanks to foundation courses. These are available to both home and international students and are the links that connect graduates to either their future employer or their future university. They are a recognised higher education degree and will allow students to gain both academic knowledge and technical or communication skills that many employers require.
While foundation courses are one of the main links that connect graduates to their future employers, so are universities.
So, first the college – then the university – then the job.
However, students must bear in mind that the rules of the game have started to change recently and being a student is no longer enough a criterion to get a well-paid job.
It’s All about Being an “Active” Student!
According to a BBC piece, top employers plan to hire 18,306 graduates in 2013, some 2.7% more than last year. In addition, employers will provide paid work experience places for 11,387 students and new graduates.
The most important part of the report is the warning that graduates without work experience will struggle to get jobs, no matter how good their grades.
Having work experience is the most important factor in securing a job interview
According to the same BBC article, the top employer for new graduates in 2013 is Teach First with 1,260 vacancies, followed by the consultancy firms Deloitte and PwC, planning to hire 1,200 new graduates each.
How can you gain work experience?
There are three main ways that work experience can be gained:
- Industrial placements
- Vacation jobs
Many of these end with the students being offered a permanent position at the company.
While the three routes mentioned above may be the preferred ones, any work experience will be treasured, as the employer will see the student as one who has already learnt the lesson of responsibility.
Part-time jobs students could take up and what skills employers can see:
1. After-school help – many families need a helping hand with picking the children up from school, helping them with homework, or simply staying with them until the parents return from work. It teaches students responsibility – as children are a great responsibility and show that you are a committed individual (once you decide to work as an after-school help, you need to be aware that it’s not something you can give up after 2 days).
2. Part-time home helper or cleaner – students will benefit from a schedule that fits their studies and employers will “read” you as a person who is far from being fussy, ready to “muck in”.
3. Restaurant, pub work – several hours in the evening, after studies, will equip students with all the communication and interpersonal skills needed. Employers will most likely “read” you as a great communicator with a bubbly personality.
4. Volunteer – care for the elderly, do some shopping for them, get involved in the local community, read a book to some children. Not only will you meet some extraordinary people, but employers will value your enthusiasm to get involved and take up a challenge.
Despite the work involved, “active students” will benefit more in the long term. Choosing a course or a degree is no longer done solely for the sake of academic merits; it is now done for the sake of getting a job also. This is the latest trend, and like it or not, we all have to accept it.
This guest post was written on behalf of Bellerbys College, providing business foundation courses in the UK. They have partnered with some of the top UK universities and understand that education really needs to be treated as a whole.
Image source: Techsearch