York, and then what? Careers, travel and further study

Oh my gosh, I don’t know what to do with my life!!!

I’m sure this is one thought that you may have experiences at some point in the run up to Uni. Is uni even the right thing for me? What if I get there and don’t like it? What if I get there and love it but then don’t want to leave? What on earth am I supposed to do next?

Everybody stop. Breathe. It’s going to be ok.

If there’s one thing I’ve learnt whilst being at York, it’s that university may just be your most formative years to date. Any plan that I had before coming to university has pretty much gone straight out the window. You meet new people, experience new things, become challenged in new areas. Some very fortunate people go to uni with a strict plan and follow it down to the last detail. I am not one of those people. So if you are like me and need some guidance, York has so many opportunities for you. Here are some things that have helped me:

Career Opportunities

York Careers have great opportunities to get involved in stuff related to your department and your further interests. I study Psychology in Education. In my first year, I did a placement in a secondary school for one afternoon a week. I worked with children with Special Educational Needs in years 7-11. This was really worthwhile and gave me hands on classroom experience. It also made me realise that teaching is not for me. That’s good. That’s a start in the right direction. I’d encourage you to explore what opportunities careers has to offer and do go to the career talks. I’ve never come out of one without something to think about.

Travel Opportunities

Travelling is a particular passion of mine. It’s a way of learning about different cultures, gaining life skills, independence and broadening your horizons (sorry excuse the cheese!). After uni if you’re still not sure what to do, I’d encourage you to go and explore new places. If you’re one of those people, like me, who can spend hours scrolling online, looking for places to visit like Canada or the U.S., York can give you the independence and confidence to just go.

Camp America is a particularly popular one. In the summer when you’ve got no studying to do, why not teach a load of kids how to kayak, sunbathe in 30+ degree heat and enjoy views like this:


Further Study

There are two eventualities here. Either you will have had enough of studying for the rest of your life, or you’ll love it so much that you won’t want to stop (or option 3- you’ll not want to face to real world and have to do adult stuff so decide to do a masters to put it all off for another year). If you find that a masters may in fact be right for you, York has so many opportunities for further study. The perks of staying in York is that you already know your department, the area and some of your friends may just stick around too. Equally they can point you to masters courses all over the globe.

Lastly, if you get out of uni and still have no clue. That’s ok too. You have your whole life to try new things, make mistakes and eventually figure it out. I’d encourage you take as many opportunities as you can whilst your at York to just make it that bit easier when you get to the other side.

Whilst you’re here. There are some great places on Campus and in town to sit and contemplate life:

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Hi! I'm Rachel. I am a second year Psychology in Education student and a member of Goodricke College. I am Secretary of York Anti-Trafficking Student Group and College Representative for Christian Union. Also a lover of all things containing coffee or chocolate!!