Posted 31 May 2012
Towards the end of my degree, I along with every other soon-to-be-graduate found myself repeatedly being asked the same question: "so what are you going to do next?" With the mountains of books and assignments piling up around me the world of work seemed a million miles away, however having finished my course (minus the degree show) it is a question that I can no longer avoid, and have in fact begun repeatedly asking myself! Having joined the thousands of other young people on the list of 'boomerang kids' returning home having completed their degrees and having assessed the London rental situation without the promise of a job, it was time to get the CV updated and the applications sent out; as the fear of loss of independence kicked in!
Kingston University does not throw you to the sharks though, the careers team are fantastic! Having not heard back from several jobs I had applied for, I arranged an appointment with a member of the advice team in my faculty. She was brilliant! She helped me to completely rework my CV and personal statement, and gave me some brilliant advice on tailoring applications for each of the individual career lines that I am interested in pursuing. It became apparent that there were a number of options for finding jobs that I had not considered and I left the meeting with a substantially improved CV and a list of lines of enquiry to follow up. As well as individual meetings, the FADA careers team regularly update a Facebook page and also send out lots of emails giving details of jobs and intern-ships; which may or may not be relevant to your own career path. They always seem to offer a ray of hope when they land in my inbox though, showing that there are plenty of opportunities available despite the doom and gloom of the economic climate.
Having returned home I went back to the auction house where I spent last summer working. They, like everyone else, have been hit by the downturn but were able to offer me temporary part time work. This is brilliant as it will keep me going in the short term, though of course is not ideal in the long run. It was time to reassess my aspirations and so I began to look at what it was that I wanted from a job- beyond financial gain! It has become clear that what I most enjoy is research and continually expanding my art historical knowledge- so despite all the complaining about assignments I'm not ready to give up the books just yet, and am eyeing up MA programmes for 2013. I plan on working this year in order to build up some funds and then return to further education.
So I have applied for a number of jobs! I am keen for any work I do to remain relevant to my employment hopes for the future if at all possible, and thus have submitted applications to a number of positions in the heritage and archiving sectors; one of which has resulted in an initial interview next week. The others I am waiting to hear from- so fingers crossed! Whether you are reading this as a student, applicant or parent, there are bound to be concerns for the future job market. But my advice to you (as corny as it sounds) is whatever you do, do something you enjoy. I am continually asked - so what can you do with a degree in history of art (followed by "isn't that what Kate and William did?!"), and the answer is anything you like! If you are driven and patient you will find things work out one way or another and Kingston I have found, does everything it can to support you on your way in to the oh so scary world of full time work.
Course: History of Art, Design and Film
Level: Alumni 2012
Other information: I came to Kingston University after studying Art foundation at college. I volunteer at the University museum - Dorich House. I am a member of the Movies Art Design society, and the Wine society too! I am a Kingston University student ambassador. I chose Kingston because... I felt that I needed to be in London in order to make the most of studying the arts – the opportunities to visit galleries and meet creative people are huge. However, I didn't think that I w...