We get it, sometimes it can be tough coming back into your final year after your placement, particularly during a pandemic. But rather than pining for your placement, now is the time to use that knowledge and channel it into the next phase of your career journey.

Sofia, a Business and Management student graduating in July 2020, first accessed the Careers and Employability Service during her second year of study when seeking a year-long placement opportunity having heard about the support available during a careers talk in Faculty. 

Sofia’s decision to study Business and Management stemmed from a business mindset that had developed during her school education, she explains that:

“I chose the University of Portsmouth because of the high ranking Business School and the heavy focus that the uni had on this area of teaching.” 

Sofia discusses that the opportunity to undertake a placement was one of the highlights of her course and she highly recommends it to other students: 

“One of the greatest benefits is that it gave me an insight into the world of work and it helped me to understand what a full-time job is like, it gave me the opportunity to make mistakes and learn from them before going into a graduate role.”

She also considers that gaining the experience through the placement with AXA Investment Managers in a marketing role - the area she wanted to specialise in - allowed her to boost her CV for future graduate applications. 

She discusses that as she made the transition from her year out in industry to return to study she was looking forward to the course as she would have the opportunity to utilise the range of skills she had developed. 

“One of the greatest skills I gained was how to manage group work because in the office I was constantly working with different people and it really taught me how to work with others. Undertaking a placement also reminded me to make the most out of university before going into the world of work and I made sure that I made the most of my final year because of it.”

When returning to her final year of study, Sofia chose to access the Careers and Employability Service for support again to secure her ideal graduate role. As a final year student Sofia was part of the Final Countdown campaign which is aimed at engaging our final year students in the range of support available to progress with their career planning. 

“Since accessing the support from the Careers and Employability Service I have learnt so much and my career prospects have increased massively. Each adviser is incredible and does their absolute best to support you. The adviser I worked with enabled me through every stage of the recruitment process and I am in debt to them for their help.”

Sofia received a range of support through the service during her final year, including feedback on her CV development, producing cover letters, application reviews, and support with preparation for assessment centres and interviews. 

“As a result of my engagement with the Careers and Employability Service I secured a placement role during my second year and a graduate job upon finishing university.”

Sofia’s future plans involve a marketing role with a London-based consultancy for asset management. She is due to start her role in September 2020 and fortunately her position has not been affected by Covid-19. 

She did explain, however, that this had been a concern for her, but she was proactive in keeping in regular contact with the employer for updates. 

If you would like to find out more about the range of support available to you through the Careers and Employability Service please visit our website at port.ac.uk/careers or you can contact us via email on careers@port.ac.uk

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