So… What do you want to do once you graduate? The never-ending story of the pressure to have a plan.

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I’m sure most uni students will agree with me that this question is constant and, for a lot of us, really quite irritating. I had so much trouble choosing my A-Levels that I did one more than most… You know, to keep my options open.

Personally, I think this should be celebrated in graduates, it should be accepted that being open to multiple paths when you start your degree is as positive as it is negative. Not having a clear vocation in mind from Day 1 has encouraged me to sit down and analyse two big questions:

  1. What do I enjoy?
  2. What am I good at?

If you find some options that overlap both questions, you’re onto a winner. It would be a refreshing change to see schools encourage more students to leave their options open. A vocational degree isn’t the only option, and it definitely isn’t what everyone should be striving for. Students should be allowed to research all their options and be given plenty of information before becoming set on a specific career.  It might not just be a matter of choosing the right degree, but of choosing the right style of institution. In certain industries, an apprenticeship could get you just as far as a degree.

As a student majoring in Modern Languages, I can assure you that gone are the days of studying a language purely for teaching or translation. I have gained transferable skills in cultural awareness, analysis, reasoning, effective communication, research, and presenting, which can be adapted to an endless number of jobs, many of which may not have even been invented yet!

After putting together all these puzzle pieces, I’ve started to see that Marketing is where I’m most suited, and I’m not embarrassed to say that, when I left school, I had no idea what marketing even was. Only now do I realise that it’s everywhere. So don’t give in to the pressure fellow students. You do you, and if you can’t find the right job for you, invent one!

“Sometimes not having any idea where we’re going works out better than we could possibly have imagined.” – Ann Patchett

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