If you’ve just graduated or are about to graduate from college or university, then congratulations! All that hard work is about to pay off. Those years of study and living off cheap food and drink to save up enough money for rent and bills will soon pay off and you’ll be able to live off your degree, right?
Hold your horses. Not everyone has plans lined up for after they graduate, and perhaps the biggest thing on their mind is the fact that they’ve got a huge student debt to pay off before they even think about making it big. Graduating can be seen as an adult kicking you out of the safety zone of a school and launching you into the real world. But they aren’t throwing you into the shallow end—that doesn’t exist. There’s only the deep end when it comes to the real world, and you better swim before you sink.
Finding a Job
Looking for a career can take some time if you’re not exactly sure what you can do with your qualifications. There are many jobs that you can apply to that only request that you have a degree in some field. This is because they’re looking for people that have the capacity to learn, and not because they are after specific qualifications. However, these jobs are typically on the lower end of the spectrum and you won’t get to use the skills you spent so much money and time learning.
When looking for a job in the field you studied for, chances are you’re going to lack experience. You might be able to write up a CV and pitch it to a bunch of different companies, but the chances of you getting hired as anything other than an intern are going to be slim. However, being an intern at a company is a great way to get introduced to the industry and it could turn into a full-time job should you work hard enough.
If you have the funds and the time, then why not continue studying? You could switch to a different topic or expand your knowledge of your given field into a Masters or a PhD. However, it’s a good idea to ask yourself questions like “what can I do with a Masters in engineering management?”. You don’t want to study a field that doesn’t interest you or invest time into learning something that won’t further your career plans. Make sure you do plenty of research before you invest more money and time into something.
Since continuing your study might be too expensive and employers won’t be willing to take on a newbie, you can use your skills and apply them to your own business. If you studied arts, then consider becoming a freelance artist and eventually turning it into an art studio. If you did programming, consider spending some time to make your own applications or games and marketing them on app stores or over the internet. There are many options available for self-employment, and running your own business might be easier than you think.