University is not just about making friends, having fun, and learning your chosen subject. It is also about preparing yourself for your future career.
You will probably find yourself with a lot of free time on your hands, so try and use some of it constructively to work towards your dream job. Here are 7 ways you can improve your CV during your time at university.
Nowadays you can find a society for pretty much anything, from competitive sports to cosplay, and if you can’t find what you are looking for, then you can start your own!
Not only will helping run a society look fantastic on your CV, it is also a great way to meet people and make new friends who share the same interests as you.
Write for The Student Paper
All of the major UK universities have student papers, which are run, edited and distributed by student volunteers. There are lots of ways you can contribute, from submitting film and book reviews, to writing about your student experiences, and reporting on local news.
Get in touch with the current editors to see which areas they need help with. And, if you think there is something missing from the paper which you know something about, tell them, and you might even be put in charge of your own section. Keep a portfolio of any published work, particularly if you are thinking of getting into the publishing or journalism sectors.
Get A Part Time Job
University is probably the first time you will have to look after your own finances, set yourself a budget, and realise how expensive the cost of living is! Buying books, going out drinking and paying your own bills soon adds up, so for many a part-time job is a must!
Any part-time job is going to add essential skills to your CV, but if possible try and find something relevant to your future career. Want a career in fashion? Try and get a retail job. Considering advertising? Apply for online copywriting jobs.
Volunteering will not only make your CV stand out, it will make you feel great as well. It is very easy to get caught up in a student bubble, but volunteering for those less fortunate can be a truly eye-opening and rewarding experience.
Most universities will offer advice on a range of volunteering opportunities, from helping out at a soup kitchen to mentoring children who are struggling at school. Click here for a full list of volunteering ideas.
Start a Blog
Starting a personal blog is a great way to start building up a presence related to the career you are interested in. From fashion and beauty, to health and fitness, to creative writing, to recording student life, student blogs are becoming increasingly popular.
You can use your blog for whatever interests you most, and use it as a testing ground for your career aspirations. Most university courses require some essay-based coursework, so not only will a blog really enhance your CV, getting into a blogging routine is also a great way to practise and gain confidence in your writing skills.
Build Your Social Media Presence
As well as having a personal blog, most employers will now be expecting candidates to be confident on all social media platforms. Link your blog up to as many platforms as possible, and make sure you update your Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest regularly.
Be careful with choosing what content you put on them though, if you want your potential employer to see them. Pictures of you downing shots, or lots of controversial opinions on Twitter, could damage, rather than help, your career goals.
Learn A Language
Having an extra language or two is a great bonus on your CV. Not only will it make you stand out from other candidates, once you become fluent, you will find it opens up lots of new job opportunities for you.
As well as taking some language modules as part of your ‘free choice’ options at university, there are lots of other ways you can learn a language for free. Many universities actively encourage students to learn another language, so check and see if yours offers any free courses.
Amy Durant writes for Inspiring Interns, which helps career starters find the perfect job, in everything from sales jobs to marketing internships. To browse their graduate jobs London listings, visit their website.