From Campus to Career: How The Business School Empowers Students for Real-World Success
Kate Walker, a 4th year student studying Marketing with Digital Media, explores the benefits of the critical soft skills development given to every student in The Business School.
As a university student, I always knew that academic knowledge was just one piece of the puzzle in preparing for the real world. However, when I embarked on my third-year Work-Based Learning internship, I truly understood the value of the Employability Skills Programme (ESP) – rebranded for the academic year starting September 2023 as MyDevelopment – and how it translated into practical skills I have used in the professional workplace.
MyDevelopment, an integral part of our university experience, aims to instil in us a set of transferable skills that will make us stand out in the job market and enable us to excel in various aspects of our personal and professional lives.
Building Soft Skills:
It focuses on developing highly prized soft skills such as communication, teamwork, and problem-solving. These skills are not just necessary for securing a job but also for success in any field. As students, we often work on group projects, participate in club activities, or engage in volunteer work, all of which demand effective communication and collaboration. MyDevelopment (known from my first to third year as ESP) helps refine these abilities, making us more adaptable and versatile when entering the real world.
The Art of Networking:
The programme teaches us how to make meaningful connections, whether it’s through career fairs, workshops, or online platforms. My training in collaborative skills and understanding group dynamics played a pivotal role in helping me seamlessly integrate into my internship team. These skills will be vital for finding job opportunities after graduation and creating a robust support system for our future careers.
Time Management and Adaptability:
University life is a juggling act of assignments, exams, and extracurricular activities. MyDevelopment enhances our time management skills and teaches us to adapt to different situations and environments. Learning to prioritise and meet deadlines efficiently is invaluable as we enter our chosen careers. I have already seen how highly employers value individuals who can manage their time effectively and adapt to the ever-changing dynamics of the workplace.
Embracing Digital Literacy:
In today’s technology-driven world, digital literacy is also crucial. MyDevelopment acknowledges this and ensures that we are well-versed in using digital tools, from software applications to online communication platforms. These skills help us excel in our academic pursuits and are crucial for functioning effectively in the professional world, where remote work and digital collaboration are increasingly common.
Putting it all into Practice Beyond University:
MyDevelopment isn’t just a theoretical framework; it’s a hands-on guide for students seeking to excel in the real world. My third-year Work-Based Learning internship was a transformative experience, and the skills I had cultivated through three years of ESP were vital throughout. I now understand that these skills aren’t just for securing a job; they are life skills that have enhanced my confidence and capabilities in the professional world.
These skills are also crucial for maintaining a work-life balance, communicating effectively with peers and superiors, and making informed decisions in various aspects of our lives. Whether we’re in our dream job or pursuing further studies, MyDevelopment’s impact will extend far beyond the university campus.