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    My boyfriend graduated in August 2015 from the University of Oxford with a Upper Second-Class degree in English Literature and Language. He's been trying to find work for almost a year now in Glasgow (my city) but he lives 400 miles away, so he can't get part time work as his city is on his CV.

    He's never had any previous work experience apart from a paper round. He's been making a little bit of money by working on a site where he get's paid £5 for writing articles for people but it's not enough to live by. He's tried applying for volunteering work but has even been turned down from that.

    We were thinking about him coming to Glasgow to do a Masters but he just saw it as another year of expenses and didn't want to.

    I'm wondering if anybody has any advice or if anyone has been in a similar situation and can help in anyway? Thank you.

    Edit: I know the reason for him unable to find work is because of his lack of experience, I'm only looking for a little bit of advice on what to do and how to deal with this situation, not on what the problem is!
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    (Original post by emily-brown)
    My boyfriend (etc. etc.)
    I do not have experience specific to yours but I can offer some generic advice. This might tide you over whilst we wait for somebody else to provide a more useful answer.

    (i) Why is he living far away and trying to find work in your city? This is clearly ridiculous - does he intend to move to your city once he's got a job? Three possible options are:
    (a) Move in with you and then look for work
    (b) Stay where he is but state your address as his on his CV so employers don't notice
    (c) Look for work where he lives

    (ii) You should also ask yourself why he hasn't been successful looking for work so far. Are you sure that it is because he lives far away or might it be for another reason? As an example, you might think about the sorts of jobs he is applying to.Do they suit his skills? If he's applying for work in a pub then an Oxford degree is of no additional help (unless he has put in some shifts in his college bar...) A museum might be more interested if he has some demonstrable interest in art.

    (iii) [edit: added this] Does he have any committee/society experience on his CV? This might help.
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    Ne needs to decide what kind of thing he wants to do and then register with recruiters to get him some ad-hoc/contract work in that area. They will be able to get him in the door at places that wouldn't touch him otherwise and then when he has experience the job market will open up to him.
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    Tell him to move, get a minimum wage job and then continue looking while in the city itself.
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    Tell him to apply at Primark or Mcdonalds they take anyone.
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    (Original post by emily-brown)
    My boyfriend graduated in August 2015 from the University of Oxford with a Upper Second-Class degree in English Literature and Language. He's been trying to find work for almost a year now in Glasgow (my city) but he lives 400 miles away, so he can't get part time work as his city is on his CV.

    He's never had any previous work experience apart from a paper round. He's been making a little bit of money by working on a site where he get's paid £5 for writing articles for people but it's not enough to live by. He's tried applying for volunteering work but has even been turned down from that.

    We were thinking about him coming to Glasgow to do a Masters but he just saw it as another year of expenses and didn't want to.

    I'm wondering if anybody has any advice or if anyone has been in a similar situation and can help in anyway? Thank you.
    Is he interested in becoming a news article writer?
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    (Original post by emily-brown)
    My boyfriend graduated in August 2015 from the University of Oxford with a Upper Second-Class degree in English Literature and Language. He's been trying to find work for almost a year now in Glasgow (my city) but he lives 400 miles away, so he can't get part time work as his city is on his CV.

    He's never had any previous work experience apart from a paper round. He's been making a little bit of money by working on a site where he get's paid £5 for writing articles for people but it's not enough to live by. He's tried applying for volunteering work but has even been turned down from that.

    We were thinking about him coming to Glasgow to do a Masters but he just saw it as another year of expenses and didn't want to.

    I'm wondering if anybody has any advice or if anyone has been in a similar situation and can help in anyway? Thank you.
    There's his problem then, employers value experience highly nowdays and he really needs to get some- it might be worth him emailing lots of different places seeing if they can offer him any. And does he know why he's being turned down from volunteering? Because whilst some opportunities, especially with the biggest charities are competitive, many others aren't. My 16 year old cousin was able to secure volunteering in a charity shop, whilst I was able to get some office based voluntary work no problem too.
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    He did an English degree.

    What do you expect?
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    Sadly for us Oxbridge grads, an Oxbridge degree is no longer the meal ticket it may have been, say, 50 years ago when fewer people did A Levels and went to uni, let alone Oxbridge! These days experience on one's CV is what is needed to get a foot in the door anywhere.

    My geography's no good and I can't personally work out where your boyfriend lives if he's 400 miles away from Glasgow. Might he be better off getting some experience (however menial and unpaid) on his CV in his hometown, before moving to Glasgow (to be with you, I presume?)? Does he have any contacts he made at Oxford who could help him get a foot on the ladder, even for an unpaid internship? Getting experience has to take priority atm.

    I agree with what someone above has said though about things like committee/society positions counting as experience in some cases. I never had a job until I left Oxford and started my Masters but blagged my way into a solid internship using experiencing from conducting orchestras and stage managing plays and demonstrating the skills I had used in these positions and how they'd apply in a workplace.

    Wishing your boyfriend all the best
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    I find it weird that someone smart enough to get into Oxford didn't realise that they needed experience to get a job. It's so unusual these days to get a job with just a degree. Also, an English degree? Not bad (people need to stop ****ging it off so much), but it's not exactly a great one for employment as the sectors you usually find them in are competitive and do often require experience.
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    He just needs to teach himself how to aply for jobs and appreciate what they are looking for. Obviously his academics are fine, but he should be selling himself on skills.

    Plenty of graduates dont have experience, so you need to show them you have the skills from doing voluntary work and extra curriculars. he needs to show why he would make a good employee for that job.
    If hes to go to Glasgow then he should be looking for graduate recruiters in the area. Places like civil service orany big company.
    In the meantime do a min wage job and a bit of vol work with a biew to using skills.

    Local media? publishers amyone that needs content for websites? etc. If he has am Oxbridge 2;1 then sure;y he can figure all this out?
    Work on
    1. ID jobs. Do it.org is quite good to id local vol work.
    2. His applications.
    3. his interview technique.

    many jobs are non degree specific.
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    Are you sure he didnt graduate from Oxford Brookes instead of the University of Oxford
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    (Original post by emily-brown)
    My boyfriend graduated in August 2015 from the University of Oxford with a Upper Second-Class degree in English Literature and Language. He's been trying to find work for almost a year now in Glasgow (my city) but he lives 400 miles away, so he can't get part time work as his city is on his CV.

    He's never had any previous work experience apart from a paper round. He's been making a little bit of money by working on a site where he get's paid £5 for writing articles for people but it's not enough to live by. He's tried applying for volunteering work but has even been turned down from that.

    We were thinking about him coming to Glasgow to do a Masters but he just saw it as another year of expenses and didn't want to.

    I'm wondering if anybody has any advice or if anyone has been in a similar situation and can help in anyway? Thank you.
    First of all congratulations to your boyfriend for graduating from Oxford with a 2:1, I imagine that would have been quite the hurdle.

    Now, to answer your question, the reason he isn't getting any jobs in Glasgow is because he lives miles away in Oxford. He needs to either move more locally or start applying for jobs where he lives. Employers prefer local candidates, it seems.

    The second problem you have is that he has no work experience relevant to the jobs he's going for. He needs to get an internship, paid or unpaid, in the area of work of his choice. In the meantime I would advise him to go for generic graduate jobs so at least he can get work of some sort and get paid in the interim. I'm sure the Oxford degree will help him in this stead. The economy is tough, but he should not give up because he will find something eventually.

    I hope this helps
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    Thanks to all for the help! Wasn't expecting so much in so little time! A lot of good points and advice given which we will definitely consider!
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    Firstly I am surprised that he has not got a job.
    I would recommend the following;

    1) apply for anything at first. This will then get him on the job ladder.
    2) Volunteer in something that relates to his degree, for example a charity that needs articles posting on there website etc.
    3) keep applying!! Also make sure his CV is spotless.
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    (Original post by urbanlocations)
    Firstly I am surprised that he has not got a job.
    I would recommend the following;

    1) apply for anything at first. This will then get him on the job ladder.
    2) Volunteer in something that relates to his degree, for example a charity that needs articles posting on there website etc.
    3) keep applying!! Also make sure his CV is spotless.
    funny if it turns out an oxbridge english grad can't write a good cv / cover letter haha
    • Very Important Poster
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    If the London thing is a difficulty he cna explain in his cover letter he is mobing to the area/ relocate or alternatively let him use your address as a mailing one. He should hey up there though just for convenience.
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    he needs more experience, or perhaps try his luck in to becoming a teacher or something. a degree from a prestigious university doesn't help as much as it used to now, you need to be more innovative now a days.
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    (Original post by whydoidothis?)
    He did an English degree.

    What do you expect?
    No. If they did a STEM degree and also had no material experience their CV would be binned just the same..

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    He should apply to places that will value that degree. Universities, colleges, schools obviously, but also public institutions in general. Charities (although they don't seem to pay people anymore); hospitals (NHS4LYF); up-branded places that might like to have an Oxford grad around the office despite an obvious lack of specific usefulness.
    Temp admin work - not that bad, although I don't know how easy in Glasgow.
    Tutoring can be a slow start outside London, especially if he hasn't done it before, but if he pursues it, it will add up. Also, good chance of being paid in cash which doesn't hurt if he's on the dole

    Career-wise, he should really think about some kind of grad-entry scheme. But those aren't open all year round, and you can't guarantee where he'll end up living.

    There are tons of people with e.g. retail experience who he won't compete with. The Oxford thing will if anything count against him. I can't tell you how many retail & service jobs I applied for after I graduated, and what a complete waste of time it was. (2012 was not a good year for graduates on the whole!)

    Personally, I think nothing screams 'no experience' like 'unpaid work'. He's got some license in having been out of work in that he's recently graduated, he doesn't need to start filling the gap yet.
    The 'skills' you gain in volunteer work are essentially made up by sociopaths from HR. Those 'skills' should still go on the CV though, just in case.
    He should try and get across in his CV that he's got some common sense, people skills, computer skills, and is NORMAL AND RELIABLE (even if this is a lie).

    The CV advice I was obliged to take from the jobcentre was actually quite good. Note - for god's sake, do not get a job working for the jobcentre. Or else you might turn into this.

    There's nothing magical or mysterious about it. In fact, after reading 100+ job applications, you're just desperate to get the whole thing over with before your eyes roll out of your head.

    It's all about persistence. Hiring people is an incredibly random process, but keep positive, the first job's the hardest to find!
 
 
 
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