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Campus Vibe
Career tips on moving from a student to a young professional
By Agnes Aineah | Updated Mar 15, 2018 at 09:32 EAT
career-tips-on-moving-from-a-student-to-a-young-professional
Student in library [PHOTO: COURTESY]
SUMMARY

Time between final examinations in college and graduation is the defining moment in one’s professional life, according to career experts.

It is the time, according to the career coach, for a student to reflect on past college life and set and redefine career goals.

According to Ramani Careers Director, Sylvia Wahaga, there is a lot that one can do apart from putting everything in place to facilitate a smooth graduation with classmates.

She says many young people fail the test of this defining moment when they assume it is just one of the many breaks from school. “It is definitely not the time to catch up with latest movies because you are technically no longer a student. Remember also you are not holidaying,” she says.

Things done during this time, according to the career coach, are sometimes enough to cause someone to forge a new career pathway that has no bearing on the course taken in school. She explains the ease of landing internships and part-time jobs even without a certificate from school.

One tactic, she says, is to work through networks and present yourself as a learner and not a job seeker. “You should not limit yourself to big organisations that you have always dreamt of because you will receive many Nos. Instead, knock on the doors of smaller companies where you have a greater chance of interning even without papers,” says Wahaga.

The other advantage starting a career in smaller organisations, according to the career coach, is that there is instated flexibility to work in more departments. In this way, they walk away with vast experience and invaluable soft skills.

Good organisations offer financial upkeep to interns. It is, therefore, an opportunity for a young professional to train themselves on their saving skills, whatever amount they get.

This way, one can make healthy financial decisions as they go up their career ladder. Whatever one does during the nine months or so, towards graduation, responsible steps should be made towards becoming a responsible young professional.

Wahaga says it is a time that one stops behaving as a dependent student at the financial mercy of their parents, because everyone else thinks they are adults.

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