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Alumni #EdLifeSciences: from university to the workplace

The Deanery of Biomedical Sciences and the School of Biological Sciences recently hosted two linked evening online events where current students had the fantastic opportunity to hear from alumni about the varied and interesting career paths they have taken after leaving university.

Kyla Atkinson, Link Careers Consultant for the School of Biological Sciences, has summarised the top tips from our speakers on what has helped them to progress their careers since graduating. Our first panel of speakers entered employment following or shortly after their first degree. Our second panel of speakers entered employment following the completion of further study.

Top tips

  • If possible, try and not put too much pressure on yourself to figure it all out; we often have more flexibility in work now, and there is fluid movement between roles. Employers also highly value the diversity that comes from having a wide range of skills gathered through different experiences.
  • Extra-curricular activities are very useful for developing strong transferable skills, and the University offers many opportunities to partake in these. If time management is a concern, reduce the number of commitments, for example a project a year, and take the time to reflect on what you are learning from it.
  • Think of experience in a wider sense. Although internships can be very beneficial, they are not the only type of experience available: work shadowing, placements and virtual internships can all support your development.
  • Identifying experiences that you have not enjoyed is also very useful learning, and can help you to narrow down your options.
  • Change, though daunting at times, can also be really helpful for your progression and stretching your comfort zones. For example, changes in job role and through taking on new projects and responsibilities.
  • Networking and making connections with others in person and through digital ways can often lead to fruitful conversations and insights, as well as to paths that might not have been explored before.

Next steps

Thanks Kyla.

(Image credit: Gerd Altmann on Pixabay)


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