I just called, to say…

jimrealiGraduates, Postgraduate


Blog post aimed at recent postgraduate graduates (2020)


I’m quite old.

Ok, let’s be truthful here: compared to a lot of people who will be reading this blog, I’m VERY old! (Think of how old your parents may be, or even older…)

Why am I telling you this? Well, it means that I have lived through some great popular music. (Yes, believe it or not, there is a careers theme to this, so stick with me…)

As I was taking a break from lockdown tasks earlier today, I realised that a lot of the songs I’ve listened to in the past focus on telephone calls. “Why is that relevant to me?” I hear you ask. Well, it just so happens that we’re going to be calling you over the next few weeks and would really like to check that you’re ok and to see if you might need any careers assistance.

During these unprecedented and challenging times, we appreciate that careers may not be the first thing on your mind, and that’s absolutely fine. However, we take our duty of care to you extremely seriously and calling you gives us a chance to check that you’re ok. If you feel that you need any extra support, it will also provide an opportunity for us to discuss this. In addition, by telling us if you’re working, in further study, or doing something else, we can then provide current students with realistic insights into the activities that previous graduates from their courses are now undertaking. Just by giving a couple of minutes of your time, you’ll be helping the university and its students, as well as yourself.

So, when we call, I’d be grateful if you don’t “leave me hanging on the telephone”, but instead, “pick up the telephone” and “talk to me.” We could “talk about you” and you could “tell me what you want, what you really, really want.” You might want to work “nine to five”, or you might not want to be a “slave to the wage”. Whatever you want to do, we can talk about your “career opportunities” and ultimately, how a “good job” could help you to achieve a “perfect life”.

Please remember that Aston University’s Careers+Placements team is here to support you for three years, so I can almost perfectly quote Mr Stevie Wonder and say that, “I just called to say how much we care” (and in case you’re not sure how much we mean this, I’ll close with Faith No More and say that, “we care a lot about you people!”)

Thank you and we look forward to speaking with you soon.

NB – if you’re a bit of an anorak like me and want to know which songs I’ve borrowed these lyrics from, here you go:

  • Blondie – Leave Me Hanging On The Telephone
  • The Clash – Career Opportunities
  • The Flirts – Pick Up The Telephone
  • Alicia Keys – Good Job
  • Faith No More – We Care A Lot
  • Levina – Perfect Life
  • Mika – Talk About You
  • Dolly Parton – Nine To Five
  • Peaches – Talk To Me
  • Placebo – Slave To The Wage
  • Spice Girls – Wannabe
  • Stevie Wonder – I Just Called To Say I Love You

Blog by Jim Reali

Careers Consultant