How to prepare for your First year of university

Post-results day preparation 

After the painfully long wait for your exam results you finally know which university you’ll be starting at in September and which course you’ll be studying. Perhaps you’ve chosen your degree with a clear idea of the career path you plan to take. Or, maybe you’ve chosen a course you’re interested in but aren't too sure which job is right for you. Either way, here’s our advice on how to get a head start on preparing for your future before you dive into university life. 

Not sure what you want to do?

University is the time to discover your likes and dislikes, particularly to do with your career. So whether you are studing geography or law, you can discover what path is right for you. It can be daunting with so many options out there, so we have created a guide dedicated to helping you discover how to decide what job you’ll love to do. This guide aims to help you explore what really matters to you, how to pinpoint your skills, and ultimately, how that can help you to find your dream role! 

We know that it can be hard to begin researching what industry you might be interested in with so many out there. So to make your life easier we've collated all the different industries out there into nifty career paths guides. Take a look around to get an idea of what you like the sound of and what you don't. It's an excellent starting point along with information on how to get into your chosen industry and the steps you should be taking to get there. 

Another super way to do this is by networking, talking to people who work in different industries - you never know where that may take you! It's a unique opportunity to ask questions and get honest answers on how individuals have secured roles or managed to break into an industry. It could also open some great doors for you - some research suggests 85% of roles are secured through networking, so it's definitely worth making you connections now. Here is our guide to networking with everything you need to know! 

Remember - it’s ok to have no idea what you want to do at this stage! Ultimately, your first year your year of discovery where you can experiement and find out your likes, and more importantly your dislikes. Gain as much exposure to opportunities as you possibily can - attend career fairs, join societies and gain work experience. You'll thank yourself down the line! Why not take our Academy module on preparing during your first year to make sure you are on track.

Know what you want to do?

Brilliant! First, begin by improving or creating your CV. You can instantly update your education details to include the university and course you’ll be undertaking in September. Use our ultimate guide to creating your perfect CV where you can find our nifty CV templates and discover what employers are looking and the best way to demonstrate your skills on paper.

Now is also a great time to begin boosting your employability in the free time you have before starting university. There are a number of ways you can do this from thinking about societies or volunteering groups you might want to join when you get to university, as well as reading more boradly about business and developing your commercail awareness. Why not sign up for our weekly commercial awareness update delivered straight to your inbox every Monday! 

Finally, attending careers events are a brilliant way to start networking and meeting the firms you may be applying to a few years down the line. You can learn more about different industries and the opportunities available to you whilst gaining experience talking to people in a professional environment. The Bright Network Festival is the perfect event to get involved in – you can meet over 70 world leading employers to work out where your degree can take you and develop the tools you need to make sure you stand out in your applications. To get a head start, find out how we recommend you prepare for a careers event here - it contains everything you will need to know about networking and how to gain a headstart in your applications. 

There are plenty of steps you can start taking following results day to prepare for your future, and we are here to help you through the whole process!