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    I am graduating with a 2:2 degree in BSc Geography from Exeter university and i haven't got a clue what to do long term. in the short term i want to get a part time job so i can get money allowing me to drive and therefore widen my opportunities, even this isn't going very well as there aren't many jobs going where i live. I've been applying for jobs in retail for part time work, have had interviews but no offers. I have recently been looking into admin/receptionist work cause I think it is something that i can do well- i am very familiar with using IT and MS software etc and have always been a very organised/methodical person. A job came up in my area for a full time admin assistant however, was on holiday at the time so i couldn't apply.

    I have been thinking about doing some volunteering in a charity shop so that if any further retail vacancies arise then I would have more experience than i currently do- though i have heard mixed views on how useful charity shop work can be for increasing chances of getting jobs.

    but as for a long term career i have absolutely no idea. If someone asked me what my ideal job would be I would say writing/researching for a science/environment magazine but i after looking into this for a while i don't think it is realistic.

    so basically my question is does anyone have any advice for my situation? I have been searching and failing for ages now and I think it is beginning to make me feel depressed. My general luck since the beginning of june especially had gone rapidly downhill, just seems to be one unlucky thing after the other atm.
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    (Original post by tgwktm)
    I am graduating with a 2:2 degree in BSc Geography from Exeter university and i haven't got a clue what to do long term. in the short term i want to get a part time job so i can get money allowing me to drive and therefore widen my opportunities, even this isn't going very well as there aren't many jobs going where i live. I've been applying for jobs in retail for part time work, have had interviews but no offers. I have recently been looking into admin/receptionist work cause I think it is something that i can do well- i am very familiar with using IT and MS software etc and have always been a very organised/methodical person. A job came up in my area for a full time admin assistant however, was on holiday at the time so i couldn't apply.

    I have been thinking about doing some volunteering in a charity shop so that if any further retail vacancies arise then I would have more experience than i currently do- though i have heard mixed views on how useful charity shop work can be for increasing chances of getting jobs.

    but as for a long term career i have absolutely no idea. If someone asked me what my ideal job would be I would say writing/researching for a science/environment magazine but i after looking into this for a while i don't think it is realistic.

    so basically my question is does anyone have any advice for my situation? I have been searching and failing for ages now and I think it is beginning to make me feel depressed. My general luck since the beginning of june especially had gone rapidly downhill, just seems to be one unlucky thing after the other atm.
    I was exactly in the same situation as you few years ago (as my signature says) and graduated with a 2.2.

    When I graduated I did 2 short term (about 2 months) volunteering jobs until I eventually got a permanent job 4 months after graduating from university.

    Although there is a stigma and some backlash about volunteer work; the experience of it does actually help, but it is definitely how you show that on your CV, applications and of course in interviews (using the STAR technique).

    Have you thought about going for temporary jobs - working through an agency?
    That's what I did. Temporary jobs have a stigma too because obviously it's not a permanent thing, but then how can you say no without any work experience?
    98.9% of the time, that is most of the factors that hinders your job applications!

    Also you could ask around at different companies asking if you could do some work experience or any form of training. You may never know what you can get!

    I am saying this out of professional (I work in Human Resources) and personal experience of being a jobseeker.
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    Volunteering does increase your chances of getting a job. It shows that you have the initiative to find something to do, rather than sitting at home doing nothing. Through volunteering, you can pick up lots of skills. When it came to looking for work, I didn't have too much experience, so I started volunteering at a local charity shop. Duties involved: till work, serving customers, preparing stock for display, which all came in hand for retail jobs! After a few months, I started to get interviews for retail work, when previously I had been rejected upon application.

    There are other types of volunteering, such as community projects, admin, fundraising, etc. so you can select one that suits your interests and the jobs you want to find. You will also meet new people and make contacts, which is good for your social and work life. Through gaining experience, you are more likely to find part time work and get the money to learn to drive.

    From then, I would try to find some kind of work experience to help you decide what you want to do long term. What was your degree in?
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    (Original post by cheesecakelove)
    Volunteering does increase your chances of getting a job. It shows that you have the initiative to find something to do, rather than sitting at home doing nothing. Through volunteering, you can pick up lots of skills. When it came to looking for work, I didn't have too much experience, so I started volunteering at a local charity shop. Duties involved: till work, serving customers, preparing stock for display, which all came in hand for retail jobs! After a few months, I started to get interviews for retail work, when previously I had been rejected upon application.

    There are other types of volunteering, such as community projects, admin, fundraising, etc. so you can select one that suits your interests and the jobs you want to find. You will also meet new people and make contacts, which is good for your social and work life. Through gaining experience, you are more likely to find part time work and get the money to learn to drive.

    From then, I would try to find some kind of work experience to help you decide what you want to do long term. What was your degree in?
    How long did you volunteer in a charity shop for? and how many hours/days per week?
    my degree was in geography from exeter uni.
    i have been wondering about an apprenticeship in administration as it is something i can see myself being good at, there are a couple near me and it would really help me financially although until 2 days ago i didn't even consider an apprenticeship as an option- therefore i don't know much about them
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    I did one day a week for about 4 months at the charity shop, but if you have the time, I would try to volunteer more days of the week. Most charity shop managers are quite flexible in terms of rotas, so it depends on what you can offer.

    Apprenticeships are a good route to work, but some employers don't take people with uni degrees, so it is best to check with the company! For admin, have you considered temping like Boreism suggested? It would get you some experience, which could help you get a permanent job later on.
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    (Original post by cheesecakelove)
    I did one day a week for about 4 months at the charity shop, but if you have the time, I would try to volunteer more days of the week. Most charity shop managers are quite flexible in terms of rotas, so it depends on what you can offer.

    Apprenticeships are a good route to work, but some employers don't take people with uni degrees, so it is best to check with the company! For admin, have you considered temping like Boreism suggested? It would get you some experience, which could help you get a permanent job later on.
    reconsidering apprenticeships tbh now, cant make up my mind about anything atm. Probably best for me to stick to my original plan which was volunteer to get experience, get part time job locally, use money to learn to drive. my other problem is that i live in quite a small town so not many jobs around. we have a tesco, sainsburys and lidls but they don't have any jobs atm. I am hoping that after the summer more jobs will come up at those places (there were loads before the summer). i am skeptical about applying to lidl as i have heard loads of bad things about them as an employer. it's annoying cause there are jobs available in larger towns near me but i would have to get the bus and these are not reliable/frequent enough, which limits my availability e.g. saw a job for primark, which i would love to do cause i just love clothing shops in general, the job is a weekend only position which is fine but i don;t think there is any point in me applying to something where i have to travel by bus, cause i probably won;t be able to get there when they want me to.
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    Do you think your lack of career focus in the five years since doing your gcses impacted negatively on your final degree classification?
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    You haven't mentioned this - but would you be willing to relocate for a job? Most graduate jobs are in London, and although you might not want to move there, there are still more opportunities in other larger towns. How important is it to you that you that you stay at home/where you are at the moment? If you broadened the cities you're looking in, you could probably look for more graduate-level roles, or at least roles somewhat relevant to the industries you're interested in. It's probably also best that you're less negative about getting public transport or buses to work - don't write it off completely, but broaden your search to these areas, and as jobs come up you can check if the travel is feasible.

    As for long term career prospects, if you are really looking into the future, I'd try to focus your job search to jobs that are in some way relevant to the future, at least for the first few months - and then if you have no luck, continue to broaden it. So I would stop looking for retail jobs for example, and look mainly for admin, hopefully in a sector you're interested in - but any admin experience is useful as often assistant-level jobs (which you're more likely to get with assistant experience) are a route into wider careers.

    Other than that I would focus on internships (although these will be mainly in London or large cities), temporary work (much easier to get into) and volunteering/freelance/project work. Voluntary work is fine as long as it's relevant in some way to the industry you're interested in long-term (doesn't mean it has to be in the same sector, but think about the skills you'll develop and how versatile they are) - there's no point volunteering in retail for 6 months to help you get a part-time retail job which you never wanted long-term anyway!

    And lastly, ask for feedback from your interviews. If you're getting through to interviews then that's what's letting you down for those roles. Some employers worry about hiring graduates for retail roles as they're likely to leave in a few months - so think about how you can convince them otherwise at the interview stage.
 
 
 
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