Creative Careers Week was put on to inspire and inform students, with talks and presentations from creative professionals from around the city. As a Careers Adviser listening to some of the talks, the week has highlighted for me the range of brilliant creative professionals out there in Sheffield, doing their thing and making a difference. Some of the key messages coming out from many of the sessions were:
- Know what skills you have to offer, but also think about your values – what is important to you? What sort of work do you want to do? Who do you want to work for?
Keep learning. You aren’t going to leave university with a complete set of skills required for a job – much of what you need in a job you will learn as you go along, and this is an ongoing process. If there is a skill you don’t currently have that you think will be useful in a future career (coding, blogging, photo editing, running workshops…) teach yourself, do a course, ask a friend to teach you, or volunteer to gain the experience.
Don’t be defined or restricted by your degree – for instance, just because you haven’t done a creative degree doesn’t mean you can’t be creative in your job; you don’t have to have an events management degree to organise events…
Finally, and most importantly:
Talk to people. Everywhere and anywhere. It’s all about making connections – people who can inspire you, help you, give you feedback, give you work, but who might also gain from you as well. Make those first contacts online, use social media, but then good old face-to-face conversation is the best way to develop meaningful professional relationships.
Rachel Firth, Careers and Employability