Take time out
You might decide that you don’t want to go straight into work or further studies after completing your degree or postgraduate qualification. Taking time out, whether to take a break or to explore opportunities, can be a good option. It is usually perceived positively by employers, particularly if you can demonstrate that you gained something from the experience. If you’re concerned about how it might impact on your career, consider the practicalities and think about how you can showcase your time out it in a positive light in future applications.
Benefits of taking time out
- You can acquire life experience and have a great time.
- For those going on to further study, a year out is often an opportunity to make money to pay off a debt or save for the following year.
- It is possible to combine travel and work. You may be lucky enough to get career-related work abroad. If not, you could focus on improving your language skills or do some voluntary work or work shadowing related to the area in which you hope to work. Later on your language skills could open up opportunities.
- Employers can be impressed with the initiative and independence shown by travelling abroad. Staying locally and doing something active in your own community can also be viewed favourably. In both scenarios, you can equip yourself with skills, develop your self-awareness and enhance your CV.
Things to consider
- If you decide to take time out after your studies, some people around you may not understand your decision to not follow the traditional path of going straight into work or further study.
- Even with online job boards and networking platforms like LinkedIn, it is still hard to job hunt from afar. If you are planning to take time out abroad and would like to work while overseas, you might have to take the leap and look for work when you get to your destination.
- Postgraduate study applications can be complex involving several deadlines for applications and funding and requiring a lot of documentation. If you are going overseas, where possible make arrangements to get your applications in order prior to leaving Ireland.
- It can be helpful to set up an action plan and define your goals for the time you will taking away from work or study.
After taking time out
When you decide you want to work or go back into study, or when you come back home from your travels, you need to think about how you can apply your experience to your next steps. Think about how you have developed during the time and how you can bring value to an employer or are better placed to undertake further study as a result.
Find out more about various opportunities from the resources below.
- MyCareer A careers portal for Trinity students interested in vacancies, further study options, competitions and events
- Online Tools More information on Profiling for Success, Vault Career Insider and Devex
- Internship USA Unique opportunities to work in the USA in your field of study
- JET programme A great opportunity to live and work in Japan to acquire teaching skills while earning a salary
- Working holiday to Australia Useful information about working visa arrangements in Australia
- Fee based projects overseas Some organisations will arrange for you to do voluntary or community based work experience overseas with fees attached to such programme.
- GRADLINKUK A website featuring graduate jobs internationally including India, China, Malaysia, Canada and the Gulf
- The year out group Promotes the concept and benefits of well-structured year out programmes. Lists organisations targeting students taking a year out before college
- USIT Provides information on working and living in different countries