Am I really in final year ??

I can’t believe final year has come round, the last four years have gone by so fast. After spending the year in industry, I am ready to smash this year and give it all that I have. One thing placement year helped me with is having a consistent routine. As a student we fall into the habit of not having a consistent routine and consistency is key !! 

Here are some University goals I have set this year:

  • Consistent routine – wake up and sleep around the same time every day, maybe a cheeky lie in on a Sunday

  • Ensure that all the weeks work is completed before the next week, include readings, going through lectures, tutorials etc

  • Don’t stress, panicking is a rocking chair and achieves no results. So get it together ya’ll ?

These are really simple rules, but don’t overcomplicate final year, do what works for you, enjoy the progress and work hard. All the best to everyone, you go this, and remember preparation for the future is important but :

“Breathe. Let go. And remind yourself that this very moment is the only one you know you have for sure. Oprah Winfrey”

 

 

Placement Year is Over…Bring on Final Year!

Hi Guys!

Hope you all had a wonderful summer! It’s already September 2017 and the new academic year is just around the corner!

My year has been really busy, I’ve done 2 placements, as you may know from my previous blog, the first one was a bit of a struggle, but the second one was amazing! I really felt like I was an actual employee from beginning to end. I learnt so much! And yes the ‘working world’ is very different to ‘academic life’, so all you new placement students – be ready for the change.

I honestly recommend doing a placement, it is very much worth it. In fact, I discovered a sector of the industry I never knew existed – it’s called Transport Planning and I very much enjoyed it. I would actually like to do a few more internships in different business sectors because they all have their specialities and you do feel that you may be more suited to one more than the other.

So yeah, I highly recommend going on placement – take the opportunity and work for a year! I know it is super hard trying to find one, but that’s all part of the ‘job hunting’ experience too.

In terms of things that I learnt, here’s a brief list;

  • Time management
  • Team work and helping to complete tasks before deadlines
  • Meeting Deadlines
  • Getting involved with social teams such as quiz nights
  • How to actually use MS Excel in the office (believe me, I didn’t realise how important it was and had forgotten how to use it since GCSE, I had to learn it from scratch on my placement!)
  • Learning to use new software
  • Managing more than one task
  • Independent learning and problem solving
  • How to write emails to bosses, colleagues, customers etc

…I could go on for a lot longer… but basically there is so much to learn and you don’t realise it until you actually experience work.

Overall, a placement year is a really good opportunity to gain skills, and actually work, and it’s a bit of a wake up call to real life work. And if it’s paid it’s a huge plus! 🙂

Now on to final year, it feels weird going back into education after working for a year but it should be fine… hopefully. I’ll fill you in once it starts.

To all the graduates – Congrats!

To all the placement starters – Good luck!

To all the 2nd yea starters – It actually counts, so do well!

To all the 1st year starters – Happy Freshers!

Manisha 🙂

 

 

Placement Year – Applying

Hi All,

Happy New Year! I hope you’ve all had a great start to 2017 and I hope all your assessments went well too.

Now, I am currently on my placement and would like to share my experiences so far. In this blog I will share my experiences on applying for placements – believe me I made a lot of applications!

Now, I had a quite a hard time finding a placement and even though I started searching and applying as soon as I entered second year, I did not receive any offers until May/June (the end of second year).  So first thing – don’t get stressed and it’s never too late to apply.

There are many companies that offer placements and internships, yet still it doesn’t seem like enough and competition is tough. My advice would be to use your contacts, if you know people in an industry ask them. Also email/ask smaller companies; they may not advertise for placements or have a fancy webpage, but they may still have something available for you – if you don’t ask you don’t get!

When filling in application forms, I would suggest making a copy of the application not only for your own reference to refer back to if you get an interview, but also most companies ask very similar questions, so it’ll save you time filling in the many application forms, if you have your previous answers saved somewhere.

Moving on to interviews, there are many types of interviews – phone interviews, Skype interviews, video interviews, one to one and panel interviews. It is important to prepare for an interview even if its over the phone. Take a notepad to make notes and it’s also good to have a few sensible questions ready to show your interest in the position or company. I know we all get nervous during interviews but the way I think of it, is that an interview is not only the employers chance to know us but our chance to know the employer. We also need to make sure the placement will suit us. So think of it as a formal conversation (not a test), be friendly and smile. If you don’t understand something they’ve asked you, just kindly ask them to explain. Some places require you to attend an assessment centre, this sounds scary, I know. But it’s not as bad as it seems. There’s plenty of practice online, so make use of that. Furthermore, in team assessments you’ll find a loud person and a really quiet. To stand out you have to be a good listener and you need to contribute evenly. So don’t be afraid to give your opinions. Oh, and show you’re listening –  use eye contact, nod you head, show them you are interacting! Same thing goes for when you talk- look at everyone, acknowledge your team. Finally, when it’s over, thank them for their time and tell them that you’ll look forward to hearing from them.

Another tip –  if you don’t hear from them for an interview or even after an interview, be sure to chase them up, don’t go over the top, but chasing them shows you’re really interested.

Placement searching can be overwhelming but don’t stress about it. Make your applications good, and save them, then you’ll fill them in quicker. Organise yourself and keep a list of all the applications you’ve made and note next to them the stage of application you are at, whether that’s an interview or a chase up. Make plenty of applications! Keep applying until you receive and offer! And you will! Just don’t give up! For example, I got an offer in May for a placement but it was only 3 months long, I accepted and completed it, but I had another 6 months of placement to find.  After many applications and searching I finally got offered a 6 month placement in December just gone. So don’t give up. Keep motivated. Get organised. Concentrate on your uni work and make time for applications.

The next blog will be about my experiences on placement, so watch this space!

Good luck! 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

New Year New Me?

Happy New Year!

New year New me? Well, seriously, that don’t really last, but its good to aim high and have a fresh start to the new year.

I hope you’ve all had a great start to 2016!….. I know, most of it has probably gone into revision and now we just want to get the exams over with.

Keep at it! Stay strong!  It’s just a few more days, and then it’ll all be over and done! Then you can fully and properly start your new years resolutions……. Now there’s something to look forward too!

Get that last minute revision in and finish that piece of coursework!

Good Luck!

Almost Christmas!

Hey Guys!

Hope everyone is doing well. Just a week and a bit to go until we break up for Christmas! Hang in there….

So it’s the festive season, everyone’s excited, shopping, feeling the festive spirit and…..trying….trying to start revising (if you have January exams).

Well, my advice would be to start as soon as possible; Organise your revision. Study effectively and efficiently. Make use of revision lectures! And last but definitely not least take out time to enjoy the holidays and relax.

Have a nice break!

Good Luck with revision

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

 

Second Year!

Second year has been very intense, but trying to avoid the stress of it, I have been trying to make sure by the end of each week, I’ve understood and summarised every lecture of that week. Also , as soon as I was given a piece of coursework, I learnt from my mistakes last year, by not keeping it last minute , and doing it as soon as I was given it.

Good Luck everyone !

1 Month In…

Hey Guys!

Happy Halloween!

We’re over 1 month into the first term now, I hope you’re doing well!

First years – it seems like you’ve all settled into Aston quite well and most of you seem to be enjoying uni life!

Second years – we’re finding work a little harder especially while trying to sort out placements but we’re still having fun!

Placement students – hope it’s all going well with your new experiences in the working world!

Final years – well…Good Luck to all of you!

So everyone is busy and working hard, things are looking good! Christmas isn’t far now and yes most of us do have January exams. So advice for this month? Well, just keep it up, stay organised and stay motivated!

Get Involved

You’re probably thinking all the volunteering opportunities available to you are a waste of time or maybe you’re even thinking that it will occupy too much of your time that you won’t be able to keep up academically. Well, that’s not quite true… it all depends on yourself. You need to stay focused and have a drive to succeed and go the extra mile. Time at university goes very fast and before you know it all the exams will be over, the year will be over but you won’t get that year back.

You want to be able to enjoy your time at university, but also build a portfolio to show future employers… once upon a time you may have taken out time to help at parent’s evening at school and that may have meant quite a bit to you, you were proud (which you should be) but that was quite some time ago. Employers like to see what you have done other than your academic studies, especially the things you have been doing alongside your studies. So ask yourself the question; what further steps have you taken to make yourself stand out from the crowd?

Graduation may sound like a long time away, but university time flies. Build your skills by volunteering, whether that’s representing student voice, helping in schools, becoming an Ambassador etc. There are plenty of opportunities out there waiting for you. You just need to take them and manage time effectively.

Think about your future. Think about the people around you. Think about your friends. At the end of your degree you all want a good job, and you would have all applied to places you have always wanted to work… but you’re not going to be the only person to apply to that single position, those around you are your competitors but always ask yourself what makes you different? And why should they offer you the job ahead of thousands of other people who applied?

So go ahead, get ahead. Get involved today.

Term Starts!

Hiya everyone!

I hope you had a great fresher’s week, because its over, and now we get back to business.

Teaching starts tomorrow! I know,  a few weeks ago the holidays seemed to drag on a bit and we felt a little bit of an urge to get back to uni,  but right now we feel like we could do with just a few more days off.  Well, that’s not going to happen unless your timetable is really really….really really, really REALLY good, so a few tips on starting the new term:

  • Be prepared to put some hard work in to your studies.
  • Aim to do better than what you did last year.
  • Set goals, plan and organise your time; plan your study time efficiently with your chilling time! Make sure you plan for both!
  • Join societies and actually go to the meetings/ sessions/classes/training etc.
  • Most importantly ENJOY it and have FUN as well as WORK HARD!

HAVE AN AWESOME FIRST TERM!  GOOD LUCK!

 

 

New beginnings

Summer has come to a tragic end and its time to start the hustle again. I feel like today has been one of learning and I’ve come here to vent a little, is that okay ?

Last year didn’t really go to plan and as always the feeling of regret overpowers the feeling of gratitude. But a few moments of honest reflection is much better than a year of disappointment. Theres no point feeling sorry for yourself or feeling down about it. Theres no magic formula for success and we all only have one chance, one life. How do you want to spend it? Regretting? Apologising? Do what makes you feel good and make yourself proud.

Although my results for Uni this year was okay, I’ve never really been the type of person to be content with okay. Thats why this year i hope to go the extra mile with my studies.

Change is good and we are always changing for better or worse. Its better to be prepared than sorry. I hope this is a great year for all of us academics and remember to take a few moments to set yourself some goals. and be patient in your growth xxx