Hermione
Subject: Philosophy
Student status: Home, Graduate
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Transcript:

How did you feel about the idea of a career when you were at university?

I was absolutely terrified of the idea of a career, I think for a lot of people education feels very safe because you know what has expected of you. You know you have to study, you know you are going to have deadlines, you know you have essays to write and you have lectures to attend and that might be a different experience to school or college or whatever you have done beforehand but its very similar. It's very safe and there are people stood at the front telling you what to do and that is all very cosy in a way and I know what is expected of me. To think I can go out into the big wide world now and do anything I want to do, that is quite scary and it feels very unsafe.

Tell me more about that scared feeling.

I think it's that you have absolutely no idea what it is you might be expected to do and particularly for myself I didn't know what career I wanted to go into. Having done a humanities undergraduate degree, people say 'Oh it doesn't matter about the subject, it's about the transferable skills.  You can apply that to anything, you can go into anything you want to do.'  Where do you start with that?  How do you start narrowing down what you actually want to do?

For me, while I was at university it very much felt like that was the rest of my life.  Once I started making those career decisions, that is what I was going to be doing for the rest of my life and that felt quite daunting. It made the choice of what career I was going to go into, become very very important and I didn't feel equipped to make that decision.  I didn't know what I wanted to do and how on earth was I supposed to work out what I wanted to do.

And so your experience at university has changed the way you view your career and like you said you are more open minded?

Absolutely and I would say that is the feeling I had while I was at university but during my 3rd year and the year since actually the decisions I make now about the career that I start on now, doesn't have to be for the rest of my life. I might do something for five years and then have a career change and actually for what goes on in today's world that is very much what people do.

For my parents, they went into their careers and that was it, that is still what they are doing. But for us that is not necessarily the case. And it's very much you can try something and if it doesn't go according to plan that is not the end of the world, you can always have a change and try something else. So that relieves a lot of the pressure of not having to find the perfect job as soon as you leave university.  You can have a go at something, if it doesn't work out so what you can try something else.  And that is a big relief I think for a lot of students.