Thinking about life after University

My last hand in date is less than 7 months away and, even though I am now in my fourth year at Uni studying an undergraduate Masters in Urban Studies and Planning, I have no idea what my future plans are. It’s hard enough trying to decide which modules I want to take next semester, let alone work out what I want to be doing next year. As the deadlines for graduate schemes are getting closer, and some have already passed, the pressure to make a decision on what to do and whether I want to apply for any is increasing. It doesn’t help when everyone asks you what your plans are (I’ve been asked twice this week already!). Over the past year and a half I have done work experience in different departments of my local Council and, although I have enjoyed them, I can’t see myself working in those areas of planning from 9 to 5.

I have always enjoyed art and design, and my childhood dreams were always to be a fashion or interior designer. So my plan is to mix my dream with my degree and go into urban design once I graduate. The only issue with this is that not many of my Uni modules are design based, and trying to get urban design work experience in private consultancies seems to be like gold dust at the minute. There are only so many times I can keep chasing up unanswered emails and phone calls before I seem like a stalker!

As I seem to be unable to make a definite decision on what I want to do after Uni, my current idea is to concentrate on my degree, but try and get some design work experience during the Christmas, Easter and summer holidays. Then I can start applying for jobs once I have graduated and when I hopefully have a clearer idea and more experience. The one piece of advice that I am constantly given by previous students and at careers presentations, is to network, network, network, and a key way to do this is by keeping in contact with people from work experience placements. So this is going to be my career project for the next year, in the hope it will open new doors (hopefully into design) for me. Fingers crossed I will get some private consultancy urban design experience soon. However, in true networking style, if anyone has any good contacts could they please pass them on to me....?!

Emily (Student Blogger)
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