AIBU to not go to this interview?(21 Posts)
Hi, I'm 22 and have recently finished my MA in English. I have never had a proper job, I've only worked as a catering assistant and as a waitress/housekeeper/cleaner/childcare assistant through a temp agency the past 6 years and during my under and post grad degrees. My family have never done typical 9-5 jobs or worked in an office, so they are limited on advice. So I'm coming here!
Since I have finished the MA, my family have been on my back to get a job every day. To stop them asking, I applied for a job at a supermarket as I didn't feel ready to apply to anything else. The interview is on Friday, but I'm thinking of not going.
I am hyper aware that having an MA is utterly useless without experience, and I have none. Would it be a complete waste of time to work at the supermarket as I would not be gaining experience in my area to help me in future?
Then again, I am very nervous about applying for a proper office job as I've never really worked before. So in that way I feel the supermarket would be alright, as well as it being a real, paying job.
Also, financially I do not need to work right at this moment.
If anyone has any advice I would really appreciate the help, or any perspectives on employment for MA students. Thank you!
Do you have a vision of what you would like to do? You sound as though you need some direction to be honest.
It seems to me you are not making the most of your experience that you already have (and I'm not sure that the supermarket will add to it). What about applying to grad training schemes for supermarkets, or for the hospitality industry?
Also, do you use your Careers Service at the university? YOu can usually use it after you leave. So many students don't know what to do, but then don't use the facilities such as CV writing, interview practice, information on internships, work experience and employment opportunities- it really frustrates me that a lot is on offer but under-used!
What career did you expect to follow with an MA in English? You must've had a plan of sorts?
What was your MA in? Did they not have any careers advisors to help?
When you did the MA where did you see it taking you?
I think you need to narrow down what you actually want to do and then take it from there. Yes you might still have to start at the bottom but with an MA you would likely move on pretty quickly
Doh! Sorry missed it was in English
What kind of area do you want to work in though. It's such a broad subject
Go for the interview, see how you get on. At the very least it is interview experience. You don't have to stay there forever but it will give you an income while you figure out your next step.
I also have an MA in English, and applied for office jobs with no 'office' experience. I assume you can type, use basic PowerPoint and bumble about in Excel to a degree?
If I were you I'd just apply for interesting companies - media, entertainment and digital companies are a good shout if you're an English grad. Just write a compelling covering letter and tweak it for each job. Team Assistant, Coordinator type jobs are a good place to start. Or perhaps a 12-month paid internship? The company I work for pays £20k p/annum to interns which isn't bad.
If you don't apply, you won't know. It's truly a numbers game at the junior level - and if you don't know what you want to do long term, you may as well get some experience somewhere interesting, rather than worrying.
FYI I'm now 29 and fell into my career of choice - I'm now a Head Of at a big media company. I do still do some creative writing and other bits that fulfil my 'whacky' side.
What sort of career do you want to go into, and what are the usual entry points?
In the meantime, you presumably need some sort of job to fund your day-to-day living costs, and a supermarket sounds like it would potentially offer the flexibility to allow you to do applications and get to interviews, and would have a short notice period when you get an offer of something in your chosen career
Well OP, what is your long term plan?
To be honest as an employer I’d take someone who had worked in tesco whilst waiting for their “break” over someone who had just sat around waiting. Shows me you’re serious and mature enough. A grafter.
As I understand it being currently employed, in just about any job, is one of the best things to have on your CV when you apply for the jobs you really want.
At worst it's interview experience. If you get it you'll have something else on your cv & it fills a gap. Go for it.
Working at a supermarket isn’t that bad and it will look good on your CV as it shows you’re actually doing something!
When I left college, I was desperate for a job - so I got one at McDonald’s. I was there for 5 months before getting a job that I preferred.
I have been asked about gaps on my cv which is when I’ve had my children.
Thanks for the replies!
I used the careers service quite a lot at university, so the interview technique and CV skills don't worry me so much. I tried to take every opportunity, I think I'm just afraid of putting myself out there.
As for direction, I completely agree I need to figure that out. It's just that everyone has told me how impossible it is to get a job so I didn't want to focus on one specific area as I probably wouldn't get it. Not one person I know has got the job they originally wanted so I thought I would see what was about rather than decide where I want to go right away.
I've decided to go for the job, and have the income whilst I figure out my direction and where I want to go.
Thank you very much for everyone's input!
Well you wouldn't the first person to start at the bottom and end up running the company! Seriously though, go for the interview. If you get the job, you'll be earning your own money and getting used to working for a living. In the meantime think about what you want to do and start putting some feelers out.
OP, congratulations on your masters degree. You could look into volunteering for charities to write their blogs and manage their social media. If needed you can work to keep a roof over your head until you get paid gigs and then freelance as a writer. You could also try and get into medical writing. Be proud of what you have achieved and believe in what you will achieve.
Its easier to get a job if you already have one and will show that you've been prepared to do something interim and not sit on your arse. Also think about what transferrable skills could be useful in future, for ANY job, such as working with others, communication, organisation etc.
Work of any description will broaden your experience - even if it makes you realise what you DON'T want to do. And there is always the social aspect of meeting new people, nights out etc.
I do get the sense that you are backing off from your graduate competition and preferring jobs which you think are not so 'status' oriented and will be easier to get.
Perhaps you could think about trying for management positions in whatever companies you work in after a short while. Or look for internships as a stop gap (some as others have said are quite well-paid).
Fortune favours the brave, OP, in the job field in particular.
" I have never had a proper job, I've only worked as a catering assistant and as a waitress/housekeeper/cleaner/childcare assistant"
Those are proper jobs! Maybe but what you aspire to eventually but they certainly are proper jobs!
the jobs you list are proper jobs.
as my dad drummed into me 😁 no honest work is beneath anyone.
workplace experience is never a waste of time.
earning your own money is always a good idea.
having a job is never a waste of your time.
Ah I was worried it sounded like I turning my nose up at my previous jobs, or at supermarket jobs. I'm really not, it was only that all those jobs were on a temporary basis so I didn't know if they counted, and I wasn't sure if supermarket work would help or hinder my CV as it isn't related to English. But I see that it will help! What I should have said is I have no experience in permanent, longer term employment.
Yellowblackgrey, that is a really good idea, thank you. I would love to do the blogs and social media and I will go and look into that! And thank you for your congratulations!
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