My Career After University - 4 Years After Graduating.

This time 4 years ago I completed my Dance degree, packed up my attic bedroom and left Coventry University. It's 7 years ago I was a fresher, where has the time gone? I've written about my Perspective on Leaving University and my tips on You've Graduated, What Now? but I've never actually reflected on my career since then. 

I've had over 10 jobs in four years! I've crammed quite a lot into the time since University finished. I do believe that every single role played their own part in my career development and getting to the point where I am today, a Learning Support Assistant and Part Time Freelance Social Media Manager.

It's important to say that getting to this point wasn't an easy ride. 


Back in the summer of 2014 when I left university I had no idea what would happen and I had no idea what I wanted to do. I decided to continue my placement at People Dancing until the September, I worked with them during my final year of university and it felt right to stick around for a couple of months. It gave me an escape from the day's I spent job hunting and I learned so much from working alongside their team, particularly Louise who was once my mentor for my placement but now a good friend of mine. She taught me a lot about organisational skills, networking and believing in my capabilities.

After a lot of job applications, rejections and lots of tears I finally accepted a role as a Breakfast and After Club Leader for a local company. It was my first professional role in a school, I did all sorts of activities in primary schools whilst having lots of fun in the process. It became too difficult to travel to and from the locations of the schools so I decided that I needed something with a bit more "meat" to get stuck into and wouldn't be such a challenge. 

At the end of 2014 I got my first "big" job in the dance sector when I undertook the position as Young Associate Programmer for a local dance organisation. This job meant that I got to be on panels for Youth Dance events and I programmed a Fringe Festival of performances in the local shopping centre. This was the first time I was exposed to the professional world and an office type job. I helped out with marketing, contacting dance groups, organising events, meeting venues etc. I'm no stranger to admitting that they were creative differences with people in this role and so I cut short my contract there as it just wasn't working for me or them.

After this, I became a Freelance Dance Artist and took on a variety of different roles in a variety of education settings throughout the county. I really enjoyed the opportunities that being a Dance Artist provided me, I loved working with children and the Dances we created together. At this point I had met Jordan and we wanted to move in together so I needed more stability and everyone knows that having a Freelance career doesn't always offer you that stability of an income. I decided then to balance my Freelance job with working in the local pub. I've had my fair share of pub jobs but this was hands down one of the worst managed that I've worked in, however, I met such a fantastic group of people who I'm still friends with now! 



In 2016 I got the job I wanted, I had decided that I wanted to become a Teacher. I worked in a secondary school as a Teaching Assistant and worked on a 1:1 basis with a student with multiple learning disabilities. I absolutely loved my job! The people in that job were an incredible bunch and I felt part of one of the best teams ever and extremely lucky to have done so. But my blog was doing well and I wanted to do more with it. There was a pressure I felt that I should be doing it full-time if I wanted to receive the opportunities that other bloggers had. I couldn't make it anywhere with my blog unless I was full-time is the cycle I kept on thinking, how wrong was I.


I did two jobs in Marketing and realised it wasn't for me.

The first job was entitled 'Social Media and Content Editor' which was, in fact, more customer service based than social media and I spent a lot of hours doing nothing productive with my time. Within the first 2 weeks of the job I was overcome with crippling anxiety, signed off from work and got a stomach virus. I decided that this role was doing nothing for me and resigned within my first month there. The second job I had high hopes for but they didn't reach them. I was part of an incredibly small team and paid to do ALL the company's marketing as an assistant wage (in hindsight I should have asked for more pay!). Anyway, I definitely believe that I was treated unfairly and so it wasn't actually too much of a surprise when 5 months into the job I was handed a letter to say I would be dismissed immediately from my position. I think what was the worst part of the entire experience was being handed this letter to read and pack my stuff whilst the manager just sat behind me in complete silence, no thankyou or anything. It was a really challenging time for me and my MH hit me massively. 

I haven't looked back at the experience though. 

That was 3 months ago and honestly losing your job is shitty, of course it is. The last 3 months I have regained some confidence back, been working a couple of part-time jobs and just been trying to find the ideal job for me to get where I'd like to. I am sure now that the balance between working Freelance part-time and in a school is where I'd like to be. I've been having the best time working as a Classroom Support Assistant during the day and spending my evenings managing a couple of clients and blogging to my heart's content. 

I have in fact also recently accepted a new role as from August 2018 as a Learning Support Assistant in a local primary school that looks and sounds wonderful. My blog/freelance services will always be a side hustle of mine and I'm happy with that settlement, it suits me well. 

What is your career journey? Tell me what are the variety of jobs you've had in your career? 




4 comments

  1. This made me feel SO MUCH BETTER! I graduated almost 2 years ago and had a really tough time and 5 jobs. I felt like such a failure! Glad to see I'm not the only one who's had some disappointments and still come out the other side.

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  2. Well done on getting your new job, it sounds like you'll be a lot happier :)

    Mel ★ http://www.meleaglestone.co.uk

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  3. I find this so interesting, you've done so much! I went from auditioning for dance schools to working in a dance shop, to front of house in a theatre, to nannying and university, then internship after internship before getting a job at ASOS, then I moved to Camden Market as the content co-ordinator, then freelance for a bit, then to my current job as an editor!
    Congratulations on the new job, it sounds like it will be perfect for you ��
    Hels xx
    www.thehelsproject.com

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  4. I'm currently in my second year of university, and the prospect of going out into the real world after graduation absolutely terrifies me, but reading this has made me feel a lot better! Also congratulations on your new job, it sounds perfect for you - and great that it gives you the chance to balance your blog alongside work! x

    Han | lifewithhan.blog

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