As part of our Student Insight blog series, Zipporah Gene,MSc Development Studies (graduating 2017) shares a candid account of how she landed her new role as a charity account manager.
We’ve all been there. The deadlines, the assignments, the minefield that is university life.
How in God’s name are we expected to pass exams, study course materials, and plot our future careers?
Unlike my undergraduate years, studying for a full time MA has really amped up the pressure. Three years of naive bliss and procrastination, has given way to a mindless panic-stricken year long dash to the finish line. I’ve woken up in sweats at night wondering what on earth I’ll be doing a year from now. The pressure can be crippling.
Because let’s face it, if you’re studying for your MA, chances are you want more. You’re not satisfied with minimum wage, or a job that may or may not provide career progression. You want it all. It’s that kind of mindset that ultimately means you’ve set everything up with the belief that you only have one year to get everything right.
I won’t even begin to pretend that I’ve got the whole work-life balance schtick in order, but I’ve definitely been given a helping hand, courtesy of the SOAS Careers Team.
Frustrated that I wasn’t getting replies from employers, I booked myself into a CV workshop.
Thank God I did.
After months of self-doubt, anxiety and self-flagellation, I had a eureka moment – the CV that I was sending out needed a lot of work.
It’s easy to get tunnel vision, when your Saturday nights are stuck up in the oxygen deprived heights of Floor A, surviving on a diet of gluten-free energy bars and vegan wraps, so I’ve forgiven myself and chalked it all up to experience. But in hindsight, it is comical how much I tortured myself, when all I should have done was ask for help.
My initial interview was booked on the day (be sure to book early in the morning) but I also popped back in numerous times to get feedback on my CV. After several re-writes, a lot hand-holding and talks on streamlining my job hunting strategy, I’m proud to say that I have a job. Scratch that. I have a career.
SOAS careers has helped me land an internship, which led to a job, which is now the role I can foresee doing for may years to come. No matter how qualified you are of how proficient in your field you think you are, we all need allies and I’m glad I found mine.
They’re a thankless bunch down in SL57 but they know what they’re talking about. So talk to them.
Seeing as how it’s Master’s week, I say, ‘become the master of your career’.
Be sure to follow SOAS Careers on Twitter and Facebook, so you don’t miss out on any internships, vacancies and all things careers related.
Please note that the views expressed in this blog are those of the author and unless specifically stated are not those of SOAS Careers Service. If you consider this content to be in breach of the SOAS values, please alert firstname.lastname@example.org.