Your name gets called out; you walk across the stage, receive that scroll, and it’s official. You’re a graduate! The moment you’ve been working towards your whole varsity career. Everything looks up. BUT, no-one tells you about the worrying and fear that ensues.
A lot of graduates expect to walk into a full-time job straight after finishing their studies, but that’s not always the case.
According to StatsSA the unemployment rate of youth between 15-24 for the first quarter of 2019 was 55,2%, with graduates forming 31%. Irrespective of their level of education. However, many still believe that the majority of these unemployed graduates are those who own a degree in a generalised field, like a Bachelors of Arts (BA).
When I enrolled for my BA course I was told by many that doing my postgraduate studies would be a requirement to get a job, as just having a BA degree would not make me employable.
So straight after obtaining my BA Humanities degree in 2018, I enrolled for an honours degree in Journalism in 2019. Here I learned a variety of valuable skills, but upon finishing the course and applying for jobs at the end of 2019, I found that it wasn’t my BA degree that stood in my way of getting jobs, but my lack of experience.
Many of the permanent job positions advertised on websites and social media sites have a 3-5 year working experience requirement. How are you supposed to obtain that amount of experience if you study for 3-5 years to be qualified for the job?
I legit thought having an honours degree would ensure me jobs, but the only job I could get thus far was a 3-month internship at a media company. A job that doesn’t pay much and that offers me no security. It did however offer me the experience I desperately needed. That’s why I say if you have no other offers, take the 3-month internship. At least it’s something. You might also be surprised and get a permanent position out of it. You never know.
My life is not going the way I thought it would after graduating. I thought I would have a 12-month internship; my own flat; a licence; a car; and multiple streams of income. BUT instead I have a 3-month internship; am still living at home; no licence; no car, and no other streams of income.
Sometimes things don’t go the way you planned, but everything ends up working out in the end. I promise. You just need to be patient, work hard, and keep trusting the process.