How to secure a grad job, before graduating...

Jessica tells us how she secured a graduate job before graduation!

Jessica Fielding

Jessica Fielding

As graduation approaches, a whole world of opportunities await you. One student has managed to seize her opportunity by working hard to secure herself a graduate position in her final year, before graduation.

Final year BA (Hons) Public Relations and Marketing student, Jessica Fielding tells us how she managed to secure her graduate role at Mosquito Digital as a Junior Project Coordinator, working on big brand names, and gives us her tips on securing that coveted grad job…

Start your career planning early…

For Jessica, starting the process of becoming employable started right from her first year by getting as much work experience as she could:

“I made sure to gain work experience each year of university, and personally I think this boosts your appeal to employers much more than simply good grades.

Of course, good grades are still essential, but getting work experience in a relevant industry shows you are willing to go the extra mile whilst completing your degree, not just completing the bare minimum.

I think one of Manchester Met’s best qualities is that each year I’ve had the push to gain experience, not just complete my studies, and without these opportunities I may never have discovered the perfect role.”

Making the most of your university opportunities…

Not only did Jessica gain valuable work experience, but she also completed a placement year, where she actively sought out a placement opportunity with help from the Careers Service.

“I used My Career Hub to search for vacancies for my placement year, I didn’t find it necessary to use anything else as they were up to date with the best positions.

I also visited the Placement team who helped me with my CV and applications; I found this really helpful as, although I have quite a lot of volunteer work and achievements to talk about, I’m not the best at getting them across as well in writing and I hate bigging myself up!”

Jessica found a role at LateRooms.com for her placement year, and made sure to make the most of her experiences there:

“Whilst I was at LateRooms.com, I was proactive and approached the PR team for extra work, created blog posts for them and helped with campaign ideas.”

Making an impression…

Initially, Jessica applied to work at Mosquito Digital as a part of her the module ‘Agency Life’ in her second year of her course.

“In second year I carried out my Agency Life unit at Mosquito, then following my placement year I contacted Mosquito asking if they would consider me for a paid summer placement June - September. They advised that I had made a really good impression during agency life, so they would be happy to meet up to chat about potential positions. 

Thankfully they agreed to take me on over the summer to help out with new clients they’d just got on board; during this time I proved I was capable enough to be given more responsibility, so quickly progressed to a Junior Project Coordinator for one of their big name clients.

I now work there two day’s each a week whilst completing my final year, until the 20th May where I will become full time.

I love the variety of clients Mosquito have to work on, and the people who work there are all really welcoming and supportive. Mosquito are really invested in developing their employees, personally I feel extremely thankful to both Ant and Gemma at Mosquito who have given me plenty of support in completing my degree whilst at Mosquito. 

It’s definitely a hands on job, but that’s what I liked about it; I’ve learnt so much in my role, been given much more responsibility than I expected - I wasn’t just doing admin tasks because I was new, they trusted me enough to be creative and handle my own word load.”

Jessica’s advice…

“Time management and organisational skills are essential when working part time during their year. Working 9-5 on Thursdays and Fridays pretty much writes them off altogether for Uni work, so you HAVE to make sure you’re utilising the other five days to complete your studies, whilst also making sure to give yourself some time to rest and relax. 

Although it is difficult, I feel so much more equipped to graduate University; even if Mosquito hadn’t offered me the role, I would have had much more experience when applying for other roles, giving me that edge to stand out from other people. 

I would suggest reaching out to digital agencies around Manchester and ask to intern or complete some work experience with them - agencies are normally a very busy environment, so in most cases they’re than happy for the extra help.

It’s a very creative industry so fresh sets of eyes with new ideas are always welcomed. If you make a good impression, it might just lead to a career after Uni.”

If you need help looking for a graduate role, placement, work experience or boosting your employability skills, take a look at our range of career guides here.

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How to secure a grad job, before graduating...

Jessica tells us how she secured a graduate job before graduation!