Monday, 10 November 2014

Leftovers. Post grad.

Something happened that devastated me and I thought nothing would ever be so painful or difficult to get through as that chapter of my life, now I can say that something has eclipsed that.
This here, right now, this moment in my life is so far the hardest thing I have had to go through. Those with parents who have cancer, or have gotten accidently pregnant or some such will obviously look at my 'hardest experience' as trivial, but the truth is none of those sorts of things have ever happened to me. What has happened to me is I've graduated and I'm unemployed. And that right there is the hardest thing I have had to deal with in my twenty one years.

I've read so many posts and articles online of people in exactly the same situation, stats on top of stats and so I know it's not just me. I'm not the only one sat in my bedroom staring at a computer screen and wishing someone would give me a chance. I read today about a young woman whose dream on leaving university was to become a journalist, finding this near to impossible she had settled to find a job as a receptionist or some such but was finding that was just as difficult. I completely related.

The point is, we went to university, we now do not qualify for the training or the apprenticeships or the courses that are thrown at 16-19 year olds. We also don't have the 'Two years minimum experience' in the jobs that are available on every jobsite known to man. At the same time we're now over-qualified for the jobs that don't ask for any requirements at all. So, if the jobs that are available for university educated individuals insist on refusing employment to those of us who have spent three years studying and therefore don't have the minimum of two years experience in this role....
and we're now overqualified for anything else....
and we don't want to work in SALES knocking doors and nagging people who have finished their day at work to hand over their hard earned money....
Then what's left? Where are we supposed to go?

Granted I give you that there are a selection of us who have found a foot on a path...
The few lucky ones who managed to land a job on their chosen career path, or the people who have friends or relatives to give them a leg up over the wall, ANY wall into employment. Or for those who opted for teaching, because the country is screaming for teachers....

Well what about the rest of us? We are the leftovers, we are lost names drifting in last years computer system and no one seems to be thinking about us. Every job that seems within reach we reach out for as desperately as a soul reaches out for it's body, only to be told we are without appropriate experience. Are we expected to spend the next three years post graduate working for free in unpaid internships and voluntary roles until we have the experience we're without? What do you think we live on? It's a myth that students live on super noodles, no one can survive on super noodles!
What is the benefit of having gone to university if those three years mean nothing in the system? If no one regards the education we earned there to be enough to trust us and give out a chance? Are you giving out chances but there's just too many of us clutching at the same ones?

I refer to us humanities students , but I am certain this branches out further.

Perhaps what we didn't consider when we filled out our UCAS applications was that when we finished our degree, the jobs they listed at the bottom of the subject description, you know the bit: "Where this subject can lead you" those areas of work would, by the time we qualified, be replaced by machines!
Who needs reporters when news is spread before it's half happened via social networks?
Who needs librarians when you check your own books in and out with a machine?
Who needs informants in a museum or an art gallery when Google is a click away on our phones?

This list goes on and on when you start to wonder what you used to aspire to and what you're now reduced to.

Where is our place? I say it again, we are the leftovers, where do you expect us to go?

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