ADVICE AND TIPS
Giving back to your local community, or even further afield, is great for everyone – you, the people you’re helping and potential employers. In the busy modern world, time is our most precious commodity – so giving it up to help other people is a pretty big deal. There are lots of ways you can volunteer, from ‘cat cuddling’ with Cats Protection to running activity groups for youngsters in your area. Think about what you’re good at, what you’re interested in and have a look for organisations you can help. Alternatively, think of a charity or cause close to your heart and get in touch to see how you can help. Check out Volunteer Scotland online to find up to date volunteer vacancies across Scotland. You don’t have to stick to volunteer opportunities here in Scotland – what about combining travel ambitions with a volunteer placement? Companies like Lattitude Global Volunteering (www.lattitude.org.uk) and Projects Abroad (www.projects-abroad. co.uk) give young people the chance to see more of the world and make a real difference at the same time, working on education and conservation projects.
For hands-on experience in a field that interests you, get yourself out there and look for work experience. Volunteering your time in a workplace similar to your career goal is invaluable. Not only do you pick up lots of transferable skills that are important in the workplace like communication and team work, but you’ll find out more about the job you want to do. Whether you’re a wannabe medic spending time in a local nursing home, an aspiring reporter who spends a day a week at their local paper or a future joiner who’s helping out at a local firm on weekend jobs, there’s no stopping you from getting out there and acquiring some relevant experience. Contact companies in your area to see if they take on work experience candidates and submit your CV. Work experience looks great on application forms, as it proves you’re really serious about what you want to do. Make sure, though, that you go for stuff that interests you and don’t just collect a bunch of random, unrelated placements. My World of Work is a great source of inspiration for job roles and industries to get you started.
MORE INFO: www.myworldofwork.co.uk
MORE INFO: www.volunteerscotland.net
COURSES AND TRAINING Success isn’t just about passing your exams at school – there are lots of other learning opportunities out there beyond your typical classroom. You could take on a course in an area that interests you like baking or crafting, IT, learning a language, web design, sports… Anything at all! Further education colleges Scotland-wide have evening and weekend programmes which allow you to take classes in a whole range of subjects. Even a First Aid course can make your CV shine – workplaces need a First Aider, and if you’ve already got the skills, you’re going to stand out. It’s particularly helpful if you’re going for medicalrelated roles or courses. While the outcome might not be linked to your dream career, you do have a course to pop on your CV that shows initiative and demonstrates that you’re a keen learner. You’ll also get to meet interesting new people beyond your classmates – always good for boosting those all-important people skills.
MORE INFO: www.hotcourses.com 16
Published on Feb 25, 2016