5 THINGS YOU MUST DO BEFORE YOU GRADUATE FROM UNIVERSITY
While going to university might be the main goal for many, formal education is not the only thing that you get out of the experience. You spend these years specializing in a certain field and the probability of meeting people who share your interests is much higher. You also go through a more intensive phase of self-exploration and self-realization. Overall, college years make up the transitional phase between your teenage years and adulthood.
In addition to these academic and personal experiences that you go through, you should also be using this time to prepare for your professional life. There are certain avenues that every student needs to explore before they reach the bittersweet graduation day.
In order to be fully prepared for the first steps in your career, use the following tips from the career experts at Bayt.com:
1. Start practicing in your field
As the Bayt.com “Middle East Skills Gap” survey reveals, there is a gap in what the market needs and what skills students are graduating with. This gap is mostly a result of the difference in the environment. Universities, to a large extent, are theoretical. Whereas, workplaces require application of that knowledge in real-life. This is why collecting hands-on experience through internships, job shadowing, or volunteer work is extremely important to your career. Not only does it bridge the skills gap, it also gives you an edge compared to your competition.
More than three quarters of respondents (76.2 percent) to the Bayt.com Poll: Internships in the Middle East and North Africa agree that internships “increase the job candidate’s chances of getting hired.”
2. Make helpful connections
The people you befriend at university might not always share the same career aspirations and interests as you do. So while they might be great friends, that doesn’t necessarily make them good future business partners. This is why it’s always a good idea to maintain friendships within and outside of your personal circles. Explore based on your career interests. Start networking and making professional connections that will help you when you are ready for employment.
By the time you graduate, you should already have a list of references who can verify your skills and competencies as well as a list of key connections and experts in your targeted industry.
3. Polish your skills
Competition is high, especially for fresh graduates looking for entry level jobs. 68 percent of respondents agree with that statement, as evident in the Bayt.com “Finding Your First Job in the Middle East and North Africa” poll. Graduates spend an average of four years at university, which gives them enough time to run a truthful self-audit and get a clear sense of their strengths and weaknesses.
Dedicate some time every week to improve the skills that you feel you lack, and take your strengths to the next level by mastering them through practice, research, reading, etc.
4. Start your early job search
Finding a job might take some time. Less than half (48 percent) of university students find a job within three months of their graduation date. So, it’s a good idea to start your job search WHILE you’re still a student.
You can approach employers as a student who is graduating in a couple of months and state your interests and future plan. This way, you spend less time being jobless and you will actually impress the employer with your proactivity and early planning. The first step is to create a profile on Bayt.com and find over 10,000 jobs to apply for.
5. Have fun!
This should come as no surprise. Make the best out of your university experience. While the next step in your life will have its own advantages, university is a unique time. Don’t let it slip away from you.
Come out of university with a strong CV, a fresh load of energy, and an eagerness to take on your career journey. Bayt.com is the #1 job site in the Middle East with more than 40,000 employers and over 28,700,000 registered job seekers from across the Middle East, North Africa and the globe, representing all industries, nationalities and career levels.