ITALIAN STUDIES STUDENT, LUCY, TELLS US ABOUT HOW SHE FOUND HER PLACEMENT AND WHAT ACTIVITIES SHE’LL BE GETTING UP TO…
As part of my studies in second year, I chose a module called Literature, Languages and Media. At first I thought this module sounded rather ambiguous and I wondered what it would entail. Luckily my personal tutor taught part of it last year so could give me some advice and guidance about what it was all about. It turns out it is focused around a two week academic placement which had to be in the area of literature, languages or media. For me this sounded like the ideal module seeing as I have an interest in these fields and so I really wanted to gain some experience in the industry. I also think doing a placement looks fantastic on your CV and is brilliant in preparing you for the world of work that lies ahead.
Finding my placement
Finding a placement was completely down to us as individuals. We had to find, contact and organise them with only a few snippets of advice from the lecturers. Whilst this was certainly daunting at the time and I was incredibly stressed about how I would ever find a placement, I am incredibly glad that we weren’t handed everything on a plate. By doing everything yourself, it really feels like an achievement when you do find the placement. In addition to this, it is really good to learn about independence when it comes to communicating with companies and this is a skill I will always value.
After sending email after email to companies that I had an interest in, I began to become rather disillusioned that it was so difficult to find someone willing to take you on. This is another great lesson in life – if you don’t succeed the first time, keep trying and do not give up, it is inevitable something better will come around the corner.
I was chatting to one of my relatives about how my second year at university was going and I was telling her all about my year abroad, my new living arrangements, the different modules I was taking and much more. I was telling her about how I was struggling to find a placement and asked her for some advice about finding one. I had completely forgotten that she has a connection to the Daily Mirror and she therefore had links in the industry. She gave me the email address of someone who worked at the Mirror and put in a good word for me. This was a great help considering it is very hard to find personalised email addresses for people in a company. I have learnt that you do not get much luck in terms of a response if you email a generic account like “firstname.lastname@example.org” for example. So I sent off my CV and my proposal for an academic placement and a few days later they agreed to take me on for two weeks over Easter. Recently I have been considering my career paths and I particularly like the idea of working as an editor in a magazine. Therefore, I was overjoyed at the thought of a placement at an established newspaper because it would be incredibly insightful and it would look excellent on my CV.
What I’ll be doing
I will be spending one week of the placement with the Editorial team which I am particularly excited about as I will be able to discover more about the career I may want to go into. I will then be spending the other week in the Marketing department. Marketing is another area that I find particularly interesting and I am keen to further develop my interest in this field.
So whilst I won’t be relaxing over the whole of the Easter break, I will be doing something very exciting which will benefit me massively in both my studies and in the long term.