A Stressful Career Change!!! –
I did experience unemployment like my colleagues, however, I feel like a bit of a fraud as I left a job; I knew what I would be facing, the uncertainty of nothing, and yet I also knew that the current role was having a negative affect on me and I had to make the change.
I left my previous role as a Community Learning Facilitator on the 3rd of January 2012, extremely apprehensive but knowing it was something I had to do. Having never applied for roles outside of care since graduating I had no idea what it was I wanted to do or how to go about doing it. Not very helpful!
All I had was the internet, the desire for a new challenge and a whole lot of negative media telling me it was never going to happen; “There are no jobs”…… “Bad economy”……. “Recession”…… “Double recession”…..
This constant bombardment of pessimism was not helpful!! It became very disheartening very rapidly. I was applying anywhere and everywhere with between six to eight job applications a day, hearing nothing; Not even a “no”, nothing.
Two weeks in to unemployment, having been applying for new roles since November I decided to change tack and limited my applications to Higher Education institutions. I knew I wanted to remain in a field that dealt with young people day-to-day and utilise my existing skills as well as gaining new ones. Furthermore, I aimed to only apply for one or two jobs a week allowing me time to spend on the forms rather than panicking and rushing through them; Quality, not quantity. Definitely a method I would recommend, as it worked!!!
The University of Lincoln internship, on paper, sounded new, challenging, varied and most importantly achievable. I fit the criteria and knew I had the best chance of changing paths in a trainee role.
All of the assumptions people make about internships went through my head too: “But I’m too old…..” “I wasn’t a graduate of Lincoln…..” and most worrying…. “What if the job description is not equal to the real responsibility of the role….”
So far, I can say that I am of a similar age to my team members, I am not a graduate of Lincoln, but I am a graduate and therefore have the same knowledge of being a student—the finer details of this University are starting to sink in, and finally the job description was telling the truth; so far, the role on paper has proved to be equal to the role in practise, it is new, challenging, varied and achievable!
On the 2nd of April 2012 I started the role with the University and was so happy to be greeted with fellow newbies! The first three weeks I was driving from Chesterfield and planning for my eleventh house move since graduating in 2009. But this didn’t seem like a big deal as I was and am employed!!!
Read our profiles to get to know who we are as individuals and how we each dealt with unemployment as well as unique viewpoints of the “mature” intern and those taking a leap from student to staff member!
Obviously everyone’s perceptions of what an intern is or should be will differ, but hopefully The University of Lincoln’s Outreach Team can challenge people to reconsider and if you are looking for work, consider an internship because you never know where it might lead!