Graduating? What to do next

AFS Team·9 July 2018·6 min read
Graduating? What to do next
By Elizabeth Whittingham

All set for your graduation yet struck by the fear of what to do next?

Don’t worry, you’re not alone!

Thousands of students each year are faced with the decision of where to go and what to do after their graduation, with many wishing to know all their options before deciding.

That’s why Accommodation for Students have compiled the ultimate list of what you can do as a graduate out in the ‘real world’, from travelling through to internships and accommodation, there’s plenty to think about.

Firstly, there’s the option of travel.

A popular choice amongst graduates before they settle down in their careers and home life is to travel the world, an adventure that is perfectly accessible in 2018.

When it comes to travelling, there are a few key options to consider, such as whom you would like to travel with, where you would like to go and whether you would like to take a working or leisure trip.

Many students, being low on funds, tend to either take a working trip or a mixture of the both, from teaching abroad through to fruit picking in Australia!

You will also need to decide how you will finance the whole venture and whether any admin is needed, such as VISAs, ESTA forms (needed for travel to America)and travel insurance- all very tiresome admin but all vital!

In terms of a working holiday, there is also the option of getting involved with summer camps!

Held all across the world, from Canada and the USA through to Thailand, summer camps are a great way to earn an allowance, have an amazing experience and also get your accommodation, food and travel paid for.

We interviewed chemistry student Adam on his Camp America experience over on Student Life Guide, head over to see what he thought about the whole experience and whether he would do it again.

Next, you could always bag yourself a job!

If you would like to go straight into the working world then your best option is to get yourself a graduate job.

Make the most of your university careers link whilst you still can to see if there are any graduate jobs going spare through the university, failing that, you can always head over to major job sites such as Indeed and Reed to search for graduate roles.

Contact recruitment agencies and send them your CV. Once your CV is sent to them they essentially do all the work, using your CV to find jobs that are tailored to you before contacting you with the details. Sending your CV over only takes a couple of minutes and is definitely worth it!

You could move in with the parents

If, like the vast majority of students, you are for now heading back home to live with the parents, try not to worry too much!

Head over to our ultimate guide to living with the parents after graduation and try to remember that it is nothing to be worried or ashamed about, as thousands of graduates do the same thing each year and thousands move into jobs and new accommodation pretty soon afterwards!

You could work for yourself!

Have you ever thought of working for yourself? Although the pressure of graduating may not make working for yourself appear as an accessible and achievable option just right now, there are plenty of options available!

Working for yourself can also be an option to complete alongside being employed, to build up enough work before going it alone.

In terms of self-employment, you will need to head over to the Government Gateway site to make your own account as you will have to declare what you earn in order to be taxed, head over to Citizen’s Advice Bureau to find out more.

You could go back into education

Whilst for many leaving education will feel like a natural step to take, for some, their experience with education is just starting and their love for their subject is just taking root, meaning that a master’s degree is the next step in their journey.

Interest in masters’ degrees has experienced a surge in popularity lately, with more students than ever choosing to stay in education after their undergraduate degree.

However, although the option of a masters’ degree can look rather tempting, it’s important to assess whether you are doing it for the right reasons.

Only partake in a masters’ degree if you really do love your subject (masters can be notoriously tricky) and if you believe that it will benefit future employment and earning potential!

Bag yourself some work experience

If your CV is looking a little thin around the edges, then you may need to find yourself some work experience to beef it out a little!

It’s important to remember that graduate roles are difficult to access mainly because every graduate has a degree so we all look like fish in the same pond. Therefore, it’s the little things that will set you apart for the crowd, and work experience in roles specific to your future employment will be a great way to open yourself up to more options and offers.

Of course, it’s important to remember that work experience is unpaid, so you will probably have to live with your family during the process, however, this is a pretty small factor to consider given how vital the work experience will be in securing future job prospects.

You could try out an internship

If you’re still unsure about where you would like to take your career, then you can always try out an internship.

You’ll be able to gain valuable work experience, develop and essentially refine your skills and give yourself an edge when it comes to the job market.

Internships really stand out on CVs so if you’re unsure of what to do, then an internship can provide a brilliant sample of life in the workplace.

Some internships even transition to employment so they can be super handy!