Careers Advice

University Life - Your Final Year

Wow, that must feel like it’s come around quickly! And I bet everyone you know told you it would, and you didn’t believe them, but now three years have passed and it’s your final year of university…

Published: 12/09/2018

There are broadly two camps of students heading into their final year, the ones who’ve got it all worked out already, and those who don’t. We’re looking for candidates from both camps but if you fall into the second of the categories, this article is for you.

It’s tempting to pretend it’s not happening, to focus only on your coursework and exams and leave thinking about a job until after you graduate. Very tempting.

But how about using this final year to set yourself some goals. It might be for the following year, it might be for the next ten years, or it might be goals that get you through the next week, and any of these options are absolutely okay!

Don’t overwhelm yourself. No judgement here.

Career planning doesn’t have to be a daunting task, and with a ScotGrad placement as your first goal, it can be the start of something brilliant.

Start by thinking about what you want to achieve, and what kind of job you’re looking for. At ScotGrad, we advertise vacancies in all sectors for pretty much any kind of role you can think of, and plenty of roles you’ll have never heard of until you look.

Set yourself some achievable goals. If it doesn’t feel achievable right now, break it down into smaller pieces. ‘Get a job’ is a big ask when you don’t know what’s available, haven’t sat down to think what you want from a job, and you don’t know what skills you can bring. So, take some time to explore your options, but set yourself some targets while you do:

Think SMART to create objectives you can achieve:

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Achievable
  • Relevant
  • Time-bound

You can always build up to bigger achievements throughout the year. Remember to reflect on how/whether you achieved them and adapt your approach when needed. Self-awareness is a key skill for your future. 

Woman thinking

Looking at our current placements is a perfect place to start. Tick. This will give you an idea of what kinds of roles we advertise and the skills our employers ask you for, giving you the opportunity early on to think about how you can develop those skills in your final year of university.

This also gives you the chance to reflect on what you’re already good at. Give yourself a pat on the back for everything you’ve already done, and keep a log of it. Your CV and LinkedIn profile are great places to store this information; remember to focus on your achievements rather than listing what you’ve done.  

We know it’s a busy time for you right now, you’re juggling coursework with your part-time job, getting to lectures, and trying desperately to hang on to your social life. Everyone is telling you that you need to have that sports or society experience on your CV, but all you want to do is watch Netflix and inhale a box of popcorn. Believe us, we know.

You can apply for ScotGrad vacancies in 2019, 3 months before you graduate. We don’t have any long-winded application processes, you don’t have to get through mountains of psychometric tests, application forms, and assessment centres, but you do need a plan, and you definitely need to schedule time for research, so you can put your best foot forward. So, how about it, make your final year count towards more than just your exams, but your future too.

Bookmark our placements page to get started in your search.