Newcastle University’s Annual Careers Conference
University should be one of the best times of your life, and it will be. But it is also crucial to be mindful of your future and try to maximise your chances of succeeding in the ‘real world’. But where should you start?
This one-week event known as the ‘Careers Conference’, is an ideal guide for you to make sense of what your future may look like as a graduate. Held during “Enrichment Week” in November each year, you can fully focus on starting to plan your career as there are no classes to work around. I had the opportunity to attend the 2021 Careers Conference at the Business School, and below is an overview of my experience.
A range of opportunities
Each day of the conference is dedicated to various industries from HR and Marketing all the way to Finance and Consultancy. Even if you have no idea what you want to do, where to start, or don’t know exactly what you want to pursue, there’s something for everyone. I am interested in all things technology and investing, so the Banking and Technology industry days were the most enjoyable for me to participate in. This experience took me by surprise. I realised that some roles might not be exactly for me or what I expected them to be, which is amazing as I can now dedicate my time and efforts much more effectively. There were also roles which I had never heard of before discussed, that are now of a high interest. For example, I took part in the Consulting industry day, which sounded boring to me at first, but I learnt that consultants actually engage in and conduct various exciting business strategies to solve problems, and this is now a career option I’d like to look into further.
Structure of the event
Most of the events were virtual due to Covid restrictions. At each session, three alumni from Newcastle University shared their experiences of what it’s like to be a professional from various business industries. The sessions were enjoyable and particularly personal as the alumni could relate to me and vice versa, coming from the same school. At the end, students who were in attendance asked questions to clarify any doubts they had.
What I learned
With the alumni talks, I could immerse myself into their shoes as they shared their day-to-day tasks, projects, and opinions. They also provided us with a clear outline of key requirements for securing a similar job. They gave tips of what to include on your CV as well as the dos and don’ts for an interview, which helped rid me of many uncertainties I had when it comes to applications. One of the key takeaways for me was the importance of work and leadership experience. These are particularly useful when trying to differentiate yourself and showing employers strong dedication. Hearing about all their experiences, I now have a much clearer understanding of what recruiters look for in applications.
The importance of networking
What may seem like a daunting word to begin with is in reality much easier than it sounds. Mentioned during the event countless times, it can open the gate to a huge array of other insights and opportunities. Connecting through LinkedIn for instance is a wonderful way to expand your professional circle. After the sessions, I reached out on LinkedIn to some of the alumni from the Conference to whom I could relate to the most, and to my surprise, they showed even more willingness to help.
Upcoming 2022 Conference
If you join us at Newcastle University this year, I can only recommend and encourage you to attend the Careers Conference in November 2022. With so many insights, viewpoints, and career paths you can be certain that you will find your passion and future direction. This event is only a glimpse of what Newcastle University offers to its students when it comes to career support. The entire Conference provided me with priceless perspectives and helped me find the route I want to take. I would like to thank the Newcastle University Business School for organising the event and I honestly cannot wait for the next one!