I was recently invited to Solent University to give a talk on employability, University and how to achieve a work placement. I was honoured to be asked back to the university, to speak to all of the hungover freshers, and although some of them seemed to be spaced out, fighting the excessive alcohol they had consumed the following night, I do think it was beneficial to both them and myself.

I've found that I am a strong believer that public speaking or speaking, in general, allows for a more in-depth thought processes on topics you are interested in. Before you transfer knowledge or convey the message you want to present, you have to first analyse your experiences and your outlook on the topic. It's not as simple as saying "Yeah, get a good grade and apply to the right places". I mean that's just dumbing it down, even if at a glance that is what I did.

Looking back on it, I did more than that. I pushed myself to learn, to grow and to network within my industry. I built a portfolio, I built an online presence and showed a passion for the industry I was applying for.

Nobody enjoys long blocks of text, especially hungover 1st years. To help break down the process for everyone (including myself) I split my advice into 4 benefits of work placement and 4 tips on how to get the work placement in the first place!

The 4 benefits are as follows -

  1. Practical knowledge and understanding of your industry
  2. You will grow your professional network and form relationships with those in your industry.
  3. You have an advantage over those who don't have experience.
  4. Statistically, you are more likely to achieve better grades in your final year if you complete a work placement.

The 4 tips are as follows -

  1. Fix your CV.
  2. Online Presence.
  3. Networking.
  4. Apply.

If you did attend the talk or just want to view the slides you can do so here Jack-Davies-Employability-Talk.

If you want the slides in PDF format you can download so at Jack-Davies-Employability-Talk-Compressed.compressed.

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