Recent research has revealed that students who work during their degree are immediately at a detriment when heading into the job market because they have no time to expand their CV with extra curricular activities.
Unfortunately for many students they need to earn money to reduce the amount of debt they leave university with. They could concentrate work in vacations, or opt to work part time along side studies.
With the recent graduates I’ve worked with, part time working alongside study has really helped them to develop good time management skills. So time isn’t wasted and weekly activity does include study, private research, play and socialising/ hobbies and passions.
Alongside my work as a careers counsellor I also get involved in graduate and senior level recruitment. When I interview graduates it is what people have learnt from work experience that can make a difference to them getting a job offer – work in a factory or call centre can provide good experience of working with people, especially difficult customers, and if you seek, for example work in hotel management, work as a waiter/ bar person can mean you understand the work challenges of these lower level positions.
Not everyone wants to get involved in positions of responsibility, but it can be useful to do this during one academic year. It all depends on what is right for the student – getting involved with the football team/ climbing club is also giving you team building and bonding experience.
University should give people a great experience, and lead on to lasting friendships, but it is a step on the way to a career. Thinking through what you might like to do, and getting some relevant work experience on a weekly basis may help.