19 June 2019 Arie Verhoef
The final push towards your first job
You are at the point of graduating. The world is your oyster. That world, however, does require you to know how to create a strong profile for yourself on LinkedIn and during a job interview. And that you have the right people in your network. To prepare yourself for that as a soon-to-be graduate, the Alumni Relations team organised a series of three training evenings for the first time on the initiative of Jan Geerts.
Geerts, Alumni Relations advisor, has been organising workshops for graduates for some time now: “They are training sessions for graduates by graduates.” During the training sessions he heard feedback that the graduates would have liked to have had such training earlier, before graduating.
Reason enough to start a pilot. Therefore, three evenings were organised in May under the motto of “The final push towards your first job” with topics such as “Job Applications for Starters: CV, Letter and Interview”, “Online Profiling with LinkedIn”, and “Negotiating Employment Conditions”. That final push is needed because, generally speaking, degree programmes don’t give much attention to these kinds of topics.
That final push appears necessary because, generally speaking, not all degree programmes give an equal amount of attention to these kinds of topics. Jaimy Pieterson (Cultural and Social Development): “I didn’t get these subjects during my degree programme and that’s a real shame. I think they belong in professional education. They give you tools for the first phase after graduation. So this was all new to me.”
About 20 soon-to-be graduates took part in the evening sessions, resulting in enthusiastic responses. Looking back, Skin Therapy student, Emma Jabroer said: “I found the training to be very positive! When I had my first job interview afterwards I came across as self-confident because I knew how to properly prepare myself.”
Wim van Vliet, Business Administration student, added to that: “In my degree programme we looked at employment conditions from the organisation’s perspective. In this training that takes place from the perspective of the upcoming professional. I learned a lot from it. The way the training was given was enjoyable and really made you enthusiastic.”
And Rogier Richelle (Industrial Engineering & Management) was pleased with the training on LinkedIn and employment conditions: I had Labour Law during my study, but, substantially, there was hardly any overlap with the training I received. I am therefore very pleased that I could attend the training sessions.”
The soon-to-be graduates were pleasantly surprised by the trainers’ involvement.
Former students gave the training sessions. This gave it all an added dimension. The stories about studying and careers gave the soon-to-be graduates a lot of food for thought, which generated lively discussions. For some of the trainers it had been twenty years since they had defended their thesis. The soon-to-be graduates were therefore pleasantly surprised by the large degree of involvement the trainers still had at THUAS.
Public Administration student Chandni Jhingoer: “I found this training to be pleasant and useful. The enthusiasm shown by the former students made the training even better. I definitely want to attend more workshops.”
According to Jan Geerts, the pilot was a success. “Indeed, we received many enthusiastic responses. So this training will definitely be continued next year.” Geerts also really listened to the participants’ feedback because the Alumni Relations team is implementing two changes. “We are going to offer the training earlier in the academic year, so probably in January or February, because the participants indicated they were in the middle of graduating at this point. And next year, we will be giving the training in English as well as Dutch.”
Are you graduating in the 2019/2020 academic year? The following trio of training sessions is scheduled for 2020. Send an e-mail to Jan Geerts, Alumni Relations Adviser, for more information:: firstname.lastname@example.org.