I’m currently a master’s student on the Global Human Resource Management MSc program. I have a large interest in people management and organisational behaviour.
I currently have a bachelor’s degree in business psychology and continuing my education with a master’s in human resources has allowed me to development my business knowledge and further develop my skills as a people scientist and future human resources professional. My personal interests and hobbies revolve around technology and art.
I’m also an international student; living and studying in the UK has helped me develop new perspectives and experiences. A large reason why I decided to move to the UK is because of the release of a new visa programme, which allows new graduates to work in the UK for two years after completing their program. It has been a lifelong dream of mine to live and work in the UK for a period of time, so when the opportunity came, I decided to take it.
I hope to join a company as soon as my degree is completed, which is September 2021. In this blog, I’ll be explaining how I use Newcastle University’s Career Services to aid my own career plan and personal development.
The careers team has an amazing team of consultants who can help with many different types of career related questions, strategies or tasks. I personally really enjoyed that I was able to book virtual appointments because I found them to be efficient and easy to fit into my schedule. All Newcastle University students are able to book meetings to discuss their personal career plan, have their CV reviewed, or get general advice. Students who are a part of the business school also have dedicated consultants that they can meet with.
Since the start of my program, I have met with the same career consultant about four times now. We have developed a great relationship – she knows exactly what I opportunities I plan to pursue, and she provides great advice for every step that I am at.
For example, when I first moved to Newcastle, I was unsure about exactly where in the UK I might want to work after I graduate; I was undecided about Newcastle, London, Manchester, and a few other cities. She gave me great advice on creating a pros and cons list, doing research on what the cities have to offer, and what the average costs of living may be. These were very helpful first steps in my career strategy. The meetings helped me narrow down that I would like to stay in Newcastle after I graduate, since I have gotten to know the city well, have made great friends that live here, and already know a lot about the companies that exist here.
A key component that the Careers Service has taught me is how helpful networking can be. I previously thought that networking was only really needed when trying to get a new job or make a career move. Even though these are relevant and reasons why networking is important, networking is a great way for me to learn from others.
The best way to learn about different careers, companies and people’s personal experiences is by requesting informational interviews. First and foremost, I made sure my LinkedIn profile was up to date and was an accurate representation of my skills and attributes.
I had a consultant from the Careers Service team look over it and offer advice on how to improve it as well! Then, I utilised the general LinkedIn search function and Newcastle University Business School’s LinkedIn page to find alumni and individuals who work in companies I would be interested in working for. These companies revolved around Software as a Service, technology, and human resources.
Once I found a few individuals that I was interested in talking to, I reached out via LinkedIn and asked if they would be willing to have an informational interview with me. I was a little nervous when first cold-contacting people I have never met, but I reminded myself that people are more often very happy to help. If I didn’t receive a response, I didn’t take it personally, since I know that people are busy and may not have been able to get back to me.
So far, I’ve had a number of very successful informational interviews. I’ve met amazing people, each with their unique career paths. Additionally, I’ve been able to learn about different companies and develop my market knowledge. Networking and informational interviews has been a great tool in learning about exactly what kind of company I would want to work for and what people with my similar academic background have done with their degrees.
As I continue to do research and network with different professionals, I try to remember that my career plan is not black and white. Even though I plan to continue into the tech industry and live in the North East, I also have to be adaptable and understand that circumstances can change. When I do start applying for jobs in a few months, I may find that a different location or industry is actually better suited to my needs. I find that maintaining an open and flexible mindset for fostering new opportunities is a positive method for me to tackle uncertainty. I’m very lucky to say that I know the Careers Service will always be there to support me, no matter what my circumstances entail.
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