How to Make the Most of Your Final Year at University

We’re guessing that those first couple of years at university flew by and that final, all-important year has arrived far too fast. It’s going to be a tough one, but don’t worry, you don’t need to lose the fun factor!

There’s plenty you can be doing to make the most of your final year at university. Here are six important things to factor in.

1. Focus on your work

You may need to step it up a gear if you want to achieve a top degree classification. Relying on your lecture notes isn’t enough – you’ve got a lot of individual study and research to complete if you want to earn the top grades. Organisation is also key, if you’re not completing assignments until the last minute (all-nighters should be a thing of the past), you’re unlikely to achieve the highest mark you’re capable of.

You’ll find securing a graduate job that much easier if you have an impressive degree grade that you’re happy to show off to employers.

2. Keep calm and carry on partying

Wait, what? Partying is a good thing? Your time at university is about so much more than just studying. Getting involved in social events, clubs and activities is important too. Not only will you have fun, but employers like to see hobbies and interests on your CV as they suggest that you are a well-rounded and sociable person.

3. Find the balance

Too much partying and socialising may have a negative impact on your grades. Too much time holed up in the library with your head in a book will not help your future prospects and will likely make you quite miserable. It’s all about the balance!

You’ll need to be planning your days effectively and motivating yourself to get your work done so that you can get out and enjoy your evenings. When you do secure a graduate job you’ll also have to be able to strike a work-life balance so you may as well start practising now.

4. Start making the big decisions

We hate to tell you this, but your final year will fly by like the rest and before you know it you’ll be in your graduation robes. So, what’s next?

If you haven’t decided already, it’s time to start considering your career options, especially if you want to get stuck into a graduate job straight after uni. If you’re really stuck, go and speak to someone in your university careers department. Start researching and exploring your ideas now and you’ll be ready to dive into your job search once you’ve finished.

Want to find out what careers your personality suits? Take a look at our quiz >

5. Think about what employers want

When it comes to applying for graduate jobs employers aren’t going to think: Great, they have a degree in Politics, I’ll hire them. What they actually want to see is evidence of the transferable skills you have acquired at university.

TOP TIP: Start browsing job adverts early and you’ll soon see a pattern of the types of skills employers are looking for in your chosen career. The good news is that you still have time to develop any desired skills that you are currently lacking.

6. Get work experience

The work experience that you have is the main thing that sets you apart from all the other graduates applying for the same roles as you. You may have a fantastic degree, but this alone isn’t going to win employers over.

If you can get some work experience in your final year, or set yourself up with a summer internship, you’ll be much more likely to secure the graduate job you want.

Bringing it all together

Your final year is the big one and it’s important to make the most of it. If you do it right you’ll be leaving university with a fantastic degree, a lot of great memories and you’ll be ready to hit the ground running with your graduate job hunt. Have a good one!

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