Should I stay or should I go? Many second year students face this struggle- asking themselves whether they should go on a placement year or finish the University and focus on building their career and getting a graduate job after.
There isn’t a wrong or right answer for that, but from my personal experience, I’d say: go! Here are the advantages.
- You will develop your soft skills (working in a professional environment goes hand in hand with your personal development and helps create a confident university graduate).
- You will start saving up money (reality check: or spend most of it on travelling, uups).
- You will improve your communication skills (in my case, it was not only the use of the professional language, but also the use of English as a second language; it boosts the self-confidence of every international student).
….and the list doesn’t end there!
Go the extra mile
You will also gain that one year of working experience, which nowadays is extremely precious and will make the difference when looking for a graduate job.
The market is more competitive than ever and it is only up to you whether you choose to go the extra mile and “sacrifice” a year of your life before finishing your studies for something bigger in the career or continue with your course as usual.
Hopefully, this way you will be able to escape the vicious circle when you can’t get a job without any previous experience, but how to get that experience then? I have an answer for you – placement year!
Do better in your last year of Uni
It is also said that students who take a placement year tend to perform better in their final year than students, who didn’t go on one. And why is that?
During your placement, you will have to do many tasks each day, some will appear urgent, some less so. However, you will probably still need to finish all of them and will do so by prioritizing, spreading and managing your time wisely, and multitasking.
You will acquire these tricks and will be able to apply them when working on numerous assignments with conflicting deadlines and paying closer attention to detail.
Find your career path
You may not end up landing yourself a placement role of your dreams, and there will definitely be bad and long days at work, however, every step is a part of your journey to the top and slowly, you will get there.
No, we will most likely not end up like Leonardo DiCaprio in the Wolf of Wall Street in our first job. However, this way you can explore what it is that you’d like to do in the future.
Even if you find yourself in a position that you don’t particularly enjoy, don’t worry, it’s only for a year and every bad experience is a lesson, and at least you realized this is not what you want to do.
Best of both worlds
Getting a full-time job salary and still enjoying the perks of being a student? Yes, that is yet another advantage of being on a placement. But the link to the University doesn’t end there.
You will receive support from the University throughout the sandwich year, even if you decide to take a placement abroad, because you can still contact them via email or Skype. Lastly, your fees will also decrease significantly!
Your first real work experience will definitely shape you, give you rather than take from you, will open your eyes and add on to your confidence. Therefore, if you have a chance to go on placement, do it, you won’t regret.