Post 2, July 2012
Charles Oben has completed his French with International Studies degree. In 2013 he’ll be going to Spain to do a Masters but in the meantime he is looking to gain relevant experience.
A lot can happen in a month, as I’ve found out in what has been a month of madness. Six interviews, one of which was in a garage under a bridge. Two telephone interviews; one freelance journalist internship offer; an unrequited invitation to a graduate recruitment day; two copywriting tasks, spending more than £200 on train tickets. This caused my bank account to suffer heavily from withdrawal symptoms.
The month didn’t stop there… I ate 12 double whopper meals, had my naturalisation ceremony to officially become British, England were knocked out of Euro 2012 and I found out that I got a 2:1 in my degree.
If you read my last blog, you’ll remember that I was planning on getting lots of sleep. Well that didn’t really happen. It seems I’m not very good at being idle - it just doesn’t sit well with me. Never has, never will. So, what’s on my mind right now? Well, I’m currently stuck in limbo and it’s not much fun. You see I technically live in Nigeria, but I only go home once a year at Christmas. However, my rent runs out at university in a few days and I’m not sure where I’m going to go next. London beckons, but I still don’t have a concrete reason to move there (I’m waiting to hear back from the interviews) and more importantly, I haven’t yet found accommodation there. So following my eviction from university, I’m going to be without a home for some time and I doubt I’ll be full of smiles during that period.
Something else that has been bothering me is the lack of general fanfare that followed the release of my degree result. I wasn’t expecting a parade in my honour but it would have been nice to have done something to mark the end of an era. Saying that, I didn’t feel like doing anything. Instead, when I found out, I felt empty. I was pleased I’d got a 2:1, but I found myself asking the same question over and over, ‘What exactly does my degree mean?’ Unfortunately, my degree has no relevance to the industry I want to enter and also I feel that not having a degree is hardly the end of the world. I feel the point was driven home quite emphatically during a recent interview when the discussion about my exam results lasted about two seconds.
Interviewer: ‘Did you get a 2:1?’
End of conversation.
Despite my rational expectations of university life post my results, the reality of the experience in which the last four years of my life were summed up in breakneck speed, certainly did a number on me. Because it made it incredibly clear that now I really am just another graduate - and competition is fierce! My degree feels less like a degree and more like a checklist of things I need to do in my overall career plan. The good news is that I’m currently enrolled in a Graduate Digital Bootcamp with Econsultancy, the leading source of independent advice and insight on digital marketing and I’m learning a great deal about email marketing, SEO and a whole bunch of other things. The bad news is that I’m still looking for work experience. And so the cycle continues…
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