Getting a degree is easier than you think. With the right ingredients, a degree is within most people’s reach. The ingredients are:

 

the right course

the right academic provider

the right method of study

financial plan

support, motivation and perseverance

Here is some more advice that will ensure your success:

Try not to panic or feel pressured into rushing your study decisions.

If you need some clarity, take a step back and think about whether going to university and studying for a degree is the right path and the right time for you.

If you have chosen to take a gap year, remember that your future potential employers will want to know what you have gained from your time out of education and work. It is important to show that you spent the time constructively to describe this time and the benefits it has given you as an employee.

Look out for opportunities to broaden your experience, through volunteering, internships, or joining clubs and societies.

When you graduate, it will useful to have these experiences to draw upon and to discuss the transferable skills you have gained in job applications and interviews.

 

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Study towards a job

When choosing a degree, students fall in two broad categories: The first group has a very specific career in mind – like becoming a professional (doctor, lawyer or architect). The second group simply loves a certain field and would like to learn as much as possible – without really knowing where they will apply the knowledge. Once they become involved in the field, they may choose an area of specialisation and only later find jobs that relates to this.

Whichever group you fall in, you have to keep one eye on the market. In tough financial times, it might not be the best idea to pursue a degree in ancient arts or Latin literature. However interesting it might be – it may not pay off financially as there are very few jobs available and you might have to stay in an academic environment in order to use your knowledge. This might be true for many academic degrees such as philosophy and history. However if you hope to find employment soon after graduating and climb the corporate ladder very fast, you must choose your degree with care.

When planning the progress of your career, it is important to keep an eye on job vacancy requirements to see what levels of qualifications employers prefer. Many recruiting companies can help you with information regarding your field. It is also a good idea to speak to a career counsellor or professionals in your field of interest to find out if what the needs are in the industry. If you have a specific company in mind where you would ideally like to work, contact the HR department or management and find out which degrees they seek in new recruits.

Do not start thinking about what you want to do after university, at the last minute. The sooner you start the better. That does not mean you have to have a clear career goal in mind by the end of the first semester, but you should always have it in mind that your time at university will pass quickly and you do not want to end up as one of those graduates who regret missed opportunities.

For further advice on studying for a degree and finding work – please visit the following sites:

www.careertest.co.za

www.career-advice.co.za

www.studies.co.za

www.courses.co.za

www.managementcourses.co.za