Student Career Fears
Article by Georgia Howell, Member of Youth Parliament
“Today there is such a huge emphasis on your future, and getting things ‘just right’ for the future. You’re expected to know what you want to do, where you want to go and why you want to do that. However, all of these big ambitions start with one thing; your first job. Your first job is the first opportunity you have to start working in an environment with a mixture of ages, abilities, personalities and passions whilst also striving to deliver a service to customers. But finding job number one can be so much harder than it seems, and the first barrier is people’s mindset to jobs. So here are the three biggest fears students have over their careers and working:
- My CV is boring; I haven’t done anything before and I’m not that interesting, why should I even submit it?
When going for a first job, pretty much everything on our CVs are just describing who we are as a person, and potentially some hobbies and achievements we’ve done in or out of school in recent years. This discourages students from the beginning, as they are unconfident in their capabilities.
- Work experience was cancelled, I can’t even write about that.
For year 11s this year, our work experience opportunity was taken from us by the global pandemic. We had been told for months that this is a crucial experience for building our CV and skills, so students have been left feeling worried of their prospects now that this opportunity is gone.
- What if I get a job but it isn’t relevant to the profession that I eventually want to go into?
First jobs are quite general, and aren’t normally very specific to careers later in life. Many students believe that because their weekend job at a café won’t help them to become a computer scientist in the future, they just won’t try. Every single thing we do has to be leading to our end career, right?
I believe that the main solution that schools can help with are transferable skills. Not only giving resources to learn these skills, but highlighting the importance of them. Teaching students how to write about these skills in their CVs, how to give examples of when they built these skills and also teach how learning skills in one workplace can be majorly important for another, even if the two seem so distant from one another.”