Full name: Galina Ignatova
Degree title: BSc Psychology
Year of graduation: 2020
Organisation name: Careers+Placements, Aston University
Job title: Careers+Placements Associate
What does a typical day in your part-time job look like?
A typical day may include a meeting, speaking with students, presenting or making phone calls. The schedule was very flexible, which gave me the opportunity to both work and excel in my studying.
Has coronavirus and the subsequent lockdown affected your role at all?
The C+P team was amazing with providing opportunities for remote working. Yes, there were changes – for example the face-to-face communication became online communication and the talks were completed via Zoom – however, that was well organised, and we were clear on what we had to do.
What has been the highlight of your job so far?
Being part of such an amazing team was great throughout, however, receiving the ‘Best Team’ award in the institutional round of the Student Employee of the Year awards felt absolutely amazing!
What skills have you developed?
I have definitely improved my interpersonal skills, communication and organisation skills, and teamwork. I also had the chance to speak in front of a large room of students, which helped enormously with reducing my public-speaking anxiety and was pretty fun.
Why did you decide to get a part-time job?
Having a part-time job while studying is a great chance to build transferable sills, improve your employability, test whether particular careers are going to suit you and, of course, have some additional income. Additionally, focusing on something different than studying helps with relaxing your mind and performing at your best.
How do you juggle working and studying?
The flexibility of this position was great and did not require a lot of juggling, however, it helped me manage my time better and organise my studying around shifts. It might be tricky the first few times, but it gets better with time and I found myself to be able to go with it pretty easily.
How have the skills and experience you’ve gained from your part-time job helped you in other areas of your life?
The experience from my part-time job improved my employability, as employers respect students who were able to go beyond studying and show that determination to build additional skills. Having additional experience shows that you are hard-working, determined, organised, etc. Also having to focus your mind on something different than studying alleviates the built-up stress and the interaction with the team was absolutely amazing.
What advice would you give to other students thinking about or looking for a part-time job?
Having a part-time job will help you enormously in the long run and it will be quite a fun distraction from studying. Some of my best memories and achievements of my four years at university are from my part-time jobs. Part-time jobs also gave me the opportunity to meet amazing people, build up my network and have a lot of fun in the process.
Take every opportunity that comes your way and you will graduate ready for the job of your dreams.
What are your plans now?
I have secured a graduate job position with ‘Unlocked Graduates’ and I am looking forward to start my Master’s and work experience with them as a prison officer.