Anastasia Miari, student blogger
Work experience is like buses… Or at least this is what I have experienced in the past month or so. I spent the entire first semester of my second year searching out work experience and now I have four unpaid jobs on the go, as well as my paid job and a play that I am in for the In-Fringe theatre festival, oh yeah, and uni work. Did I mention I’m also a peer mentor AND write this blog? How do I cope? I don’t is the answer!
As I write this I’m sat munching down a bowl of Special K, knowing that I have five minutes before I need to start slapping on some make-up and getting gone. Today I’m going to the Pure Fashion event in London as part of work for Manchester Fashion Network… the first lot of work experience I stumbled upon in October. After being forwarded an email about work experience as a PR and marketing assistant from a friend, I eagerly emailed Manchester Fashion Network, desperate to prove that though the add was for a PR/marketing/fashion student, I was capable of working for them. Miraculously I was given an interview and due to sheer enthusiasm, I was given the job on the spot. I couldn’t believe my luck, work experience in the fashion industry… finally. Anyway, I go into the MFN office every Tuesday to help out with their PR and marketing as well, as offer assistance at the events they run such as the Vintage clothes markets every first Saturday of the month.
So that was alright for a while. I work as a note taker for disabled students during the week also. I go into their lectures and take their notes for them, which is really handy as I may want to try my hand at fashion journalism when I graduate, so the experience in note-taking is helping me pick up vital skills there. Juggling these two jobs and my uni work wasn’t too difficult – I organised myself a time table etc and managed to keep on top of things. That was until I received an email back from the BBC about a project I had applied to be a part of.
BBC School Report takes place every year. On this day, schools throughout the UK take part in their own news broadcast, going live through the BBC website. The people at the BBC are ever so busy with their own jobs, so minions like me are hired to go into schools and act as mediators between the BBC and the schools. This involves me going into school every week and then into the BBC to relay information, keeping the kids on track and the teacher sane. I won’t moan though – it is really fun working with the kids and as I have considered teaching as a career, this is really useful work experience. Besides, it only goes on until March… At which point my next lot of work experience begins; assistant directing a play at the Contact Theatre.
I managed to bag this work experience after receiving an email from the Drama Department asking for volunteers. I have been involved with the auditions process up to now but at the moment I am debating whether to take this on during the full two weeks of Easter. I feel like I am spreading myself thin with regard to uni work already and I think I will need the Easter break to catch up and fully focus on my studies. This is the problem with setting too much on for yourself; no time for you.
I will have to wrap this up now as the Special K has come to an end and it really is time that I be getting a move on to catch the train to London. I won’t lie and say I hate being so busy, because I love having things to be focussed on; summer for me is painful without a job. I wish I had less to focus on though and would advise anyone thinking of adding a little extra to the CV to think about how much time it will take up and to organise themselves so that they do leave time for themselves. The key to my finding so much work experience in such a short space of time? Persistence more than anything. Be keen and enthusiastic. Employers love that and besides, you’re working for free!