Image: Unsplash
Image: Unsplash

Approaching the grad scheme: organisation, success and rejection

I am a very optimistic person, but I have never faced the kind of rejection that grad schemes give you.  I have to admit, sometimes I start to think about applying for a Masters just so I can forego this hardship entirely! Seriously, I am so jealous of my friends that have an extra year to avoid this grad scheme trauma! However, when I snap out of this, I sit down and remind myself of the other ten I am still waiting to hear back from. If you are going to keep your head straight in final year, optimism is a must!

Time management has never been more crucial in my life. I would recommend anyone applying to graduate schemes to make an Excel spreadsheet. I know, probably not the first thing that comes to mind. However, it has been my saving grace to ensure I am up to date. As each application has multiple online tests, alongside video interviews and other forms of examination, it’s very easy to forget where you are up to. Therefore, with an Excel sheet with rows outlining things like ‘online test finished’ or ‘status of application’, you will never forget to finish that test or look out for that email. Just remember to actually update it when you do get a reply from that employer!

If you are going to keep your head straight in final year, optimism is a must

Also, I would recommend trying to avoid talking about grad schemes with other people, this is, unless you are helping each other. It really isn’t healthy to hear others gloat about how many they have applied for. Avoid these conversations if possible, as they really aren’t helping anyone!

It’s completely up to you how many grad jobs you apply for. Personally, I am not a person who knows exactly what they want to do. Therefore,  I am applying for whatever interests me and is located right. I literally picked up The Times 100 Top Graduate Employers book and went from there. Others people may be different and are applying to one as they have been set on a particular job for life. Both approaches are good as it is up to you what you choose to apply for. I would say, the more applications you do, the easier it gets, I promise. Rejection one ended in tears and brownies whereas rejection three was a laugh and a ‘I didn’t really want that one anyway’. A friend of mine told me that the best way to get over rejection from a grad scheme is to apply for another one and I couldn’t agree more. Take the feedback they gave you and use it on the next application. A live-and-learn attitude is essential to grad scheme success.

Rejection one ended in tears and brownies whereas rejection three was a laugh and a ‘I didn’t really want that one anyway’

As the lady at the CV clinic told me, Warwick students are in high demand. It is important to keep this in mind when submitting an application, as it provides a boost of confidence, especially in your video interviews (even if it is a bit narcissistic). Grad schemes are a two-way process. They need good people and you need a good job. Grad scheme applications can be a long-winded nightmare. My main advice would be to keep as optimistic as you can, manage your time well, and remember, we are all in this together!

 

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