Enrolling in a university is a fun experience, I presume. It is something that I did not experience. However, I did go to a polytechnic in sweet, warm Singapore. Whether you are looking forward to continuing your studies or jumping into the work-life wagon, there are things you should start to do!
These are the things that I wish I knew before graduating.
These are the activities that will separate you from the crowd.
I cannot stress this enough. You have to network before you graduate. It doesn’t matter if you don’t own a million-dollar business or have any experience in the working industry. People love to talk about themselves and would not mind sharing their thoughts with you. You can learn a lot from them; All you got to do is tell.
Go to networking events and mingle! It doesn’t always have to be a business networking event. There are a lot of networking events on meetup.com and Facebook.
Join a group of your interest and start to network. You can find groups on Facebook or meetup.com.
How does networking help?
For starters, it gives you an idea of the different kinds of people you will meet after graduation. This whole networking process will allow you to build relationships with people outside of your college circle and offer massive opportunities for you in the future. Plus, by talking to people outside of your comfort zone, you are opening yourself to knowledge and possibilities. You can learn about experiences these incredible individuals have been through which you would not have known from college!
So get out there and network while you are still in college. By the time you graduate, you will have more connections (great when you are looking for jobs) and a better grasp of the way life works!
While summer breaks are sweet, fun and possibly the only time you get to relax, do not take it for granted. The summer you spend on the beach or clubbing with your friends, someone is taking on internship roles in organisations. After graduation, that someone will land a job with a better position than you (even if you have straight As) because that someone has working experience. Take on as many internships as possible while still in college and build an impressive portfolio.
Firstly, this helps to look great on your CV/resume. Secondly, you get to obtain experiences many of your peers have missed out! In my opinion, that is a substantial way to stand out from the crowd of thousands of fresh graduates.
Even if you are not planning to work for somebody, the internships you went through will help you build a better sense of what venture you would want to jump into. Plus, you will have more knowledge about the industry.
Sad to say, I wish I have known this when I was in college. It would have saved so much of my time after college. Without experience, I was aimlessly wandering around trying to get a job that I want.
Start a business
This is a piece of advice to all.
It does not matter if you are conservative or a risk taker, you got to start something while still in college. Why? This is the only period of your time while you are in a safe zone. If your business fails while you are still in college, that’s okay!
Volunteering looks fantastic on your CV. This shows that you are willing to contribute to the society. It leaves a great impression on the employers; especially if they are big on corporate social responsibility.
Also, volunteering allows you to meet new people! It exposes you to a broader range of knowledge and environment. You will never know what you might learn from the experiences of volunteering.
Start a personal blog
As per Gary Vaynerchuk (CEO and founder of Vaynermedia) always say,
Document; don’t create.
By starting a personal blog, you document your journey- Your ups and downs.
This provides a great way to keep track of your goals and accomplishments. People who read your blog can get inspired by your challenges, and before you know it, your stories can empower someone to change their lives. It doesn’t matter if you are just an average Joe. Building a personal blog and writing about your daily challenges will help people who go through the same experiences.
Another benefit of a personal blog is it creates a brand for you. Branding is essential when you are on the rise to be successful. For people to be successful, they need to be known. And you can start with a personal blog.
About Athirah Syamimi
Athirah Syamimi is a personal development enthusiast and entrepreneur. Having trouble finding her niche, Athirah reverts to her purpose - to help people turn their dreams into a reality. Hence, creating EntrepWorld.