What To Do Your First Semester of College - Undergrad Success
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What To Do Your First Semester of College

What To Do Your First Semester of College

University has started again for a new term and you’re probably starting to think about careers.

If you’re worried that your CV looks a bit empty or your application seems a bit bland, here are five ways you can improve your career prospects during the first semester.

Join a society 

Whether you’re a fresher or a final year, it’s never too late to join a new society. If you’ve got your eye on a specific career, pick something which is relevant to it. A budding politician might want to join the model UN, whereas a potential lawyer would be well-served by the debating society.

If you aren’t sure yet about what you want to do, don’t worry. Being part of a society is a great opportunity to learn new skills applicable to any number of careers, from teamwork in a sports club to leadership as a youth mentor. Moreover, why not apply to be on the committee of your society?

This is a great opportunity to gain valuable experience and show why you stand out from the rest.

Keep up with current affairs

Being able to talk intelligently about local and international developments will be really useful in any job interviews you might have when applying for graduate jobs. Interviewers are looking for students who understand how their business interacts with the world around it.

If you are able to think about this in the context of current affairs, it will really help you stand out. It will also come in handy at any networking events you attend, especially if the conversation starts to run a bit dry!

Visit your university careers service

Whilst at university you should try to make the most of their careers service. Make an appointment with an advisor and talk through your career options. Ask for a mock interview or discuss how you can improve your CV.

Keep an eye out for events they might be running, including talks, meet-and-greets or fairs. Alternatively seek out a careers advice website for detailed information about different jobs. You’ll also be able to find deadlines for internships and placements here.

Focus on your work

Ultimately, you are at university to get a degree. It’s really important that you get the best grade you can, as this will be a big factor in any future application.

Make sure you keep on top of your work and check your deadlines. Making a timetable or schedule of your commitments is an excellent way to manage your time efficiently, making sure you can fit in all you need to do.

Stay positive

For many, applying for jobs or internships can be a daunting prospect. Don’t let any rejections get you down.

Think about where you can improve and use it as a positive experience for the next application you make. Moreover, don’t just obsess about the negatives – think about what you are doing well and see how you can maximise that.

Using these five tips, you can make the first semester a real success for your career prospects.

Whether you join a society or visit your careers service, this is a great time to do something new, different and exciting, all while boosting your CV.

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Aaron Marchant is a final year English student at King's College London. He is currently working at allaboutcareers.com, an organisation offering a range of career advice to students and graduates.

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