Being career ready: It’s okay to not have all the answers

If you aren’t sure yet where your career is headed, know that this is more than normal and many of us are or have been in the same boat at some point in our lives.

Whether you are aware of the many paths you can take or you haven’t found what sparks your interest yet, it is overwhelming for many.

We asked some of our students and staff what words of wisdom they would give to those who are unsure of what to do after uni.

Here’s what they had to say:

Jaq – Peer Learning Assistant

“The secret to adulting is we are all just mostly making it up as we go along and that is often the same for careers.”

Heartily agree with this, as someone who has changed career at least once. Not knowing what you want to do will be a thing you are likely to feel numerous times throughout your life.

Sometimes, it is just better to get out there and work to see what you enjoy and then go from there. If life takes your career in a totally unexpected direction then that is okay, so long as you aren’t absolutely miserable in what you are doing.

Vi – Peer Learning Assistant

“One profound realisation I had recently is that there is no need to rush. For anything.”

That set me free from my own internal expectations and external pressure that others unknowingly, yet directly placed on me. After experiencing two years of having our plans tossed out of the window, you learn that life is uncertain.

There are a lot of things out of your control. You may not know what to do after graduating and that’s okay. The key to dealing with this uncertainty is to grow with the flow. Approach whatever comes your way with an open hand, using what you currently have in your hands – your knowledge and skills, life experiences, family, friends, academics, peers and resources.

Amid the uncertainty, you’re not alone. I along with everyone else are going through life together with you. My best tip to figure out all this cloudiness is to source a range of perspectives for your decision-making.

Ashley – Career Ready Ambassador

“You are not alone!”

So many students feel lost about what to do after they finish their degree. It is normal to have mixed feelings about graduating. Many of us have spent years attending classes and spent countless hours studying.

Rest assured it is totally normal to feel lost about what’s next. The good thing is that La Trobe has specific services that are designed to help you move past this feeling and into clarity about what to do.

I would recommend anyone feeling unsure about where to head post-graduation to get in touch with the Employability programs team and with the Career Ready Ambassadors. They can help advise on potential employment options alongside providing guidance about how to plan for future career.

Cris Stanway – Employability Advisor

“it’s important to know that you’re not making a decision about the rest of your life – just the next step.”

For many students, the idea of deciding what to do after Uni, and in particular choosing the ‘right’ career path, can be quite daunting.

The reality of most people’s careers is that they are not straightforward, predictable or linear. In fact, students in university today are likely to change careers six to eight times over the course of their working lives.

To help you figure out what your next step will be, take some time to reflect on what interests you, get to know your strengths and your values. Do some research into fields and occupations that you think might be a good fit for you and then look for opportunities to build skills and experience in the world of work or in your chosen field, whether it be through paid work, internships or volunteering.

Of course, don’t forget that the Employability team are also here to help! So, take a breath and remind yourself that all is ok and there are plenty of resources, services and programs to assist you to become Career Ready.

Document your experiences and develop your career portfolio in the Career Ready Advantage Award.