Dealing with Life as a Graduate

The end of Summer means only one thing, the start of school/university again. Yet this year, for the first time in 18 years I will not be going ‘back’ anywhere. Life has truly begun. I’ve graduated and no longer have the security and stability that full time education provides. How scary.

So far, this blog has captured my move to London, how I’m finding hunting for a job, dealing with rejection and just generally getting out and about exploring the city. It is such an exciting time in my life. I’m planning to move in with my boyfriend and cannot wait to find the perfect job for me! But damn, graduate life is not easy.

I recently went along to the first Gals Who Graduate event hosted by Bronte King. After leaving university, she realised that so many girls were struggling and not quite knowing what to do. Whether that’s how to cope moving back in with their parents after the freedom of University, dealing with that overdraft that is supposed to be decreasing yet seems to be impossible to defeat, or the difficulties in finding a job in the competitive graduate market. So she decided to set up the Gals Who Graduate platform for girls to come together, share advice and discuss their problems. The first event was held at Kalifornia Kitchen on Percy Street (the food was INCREDIBLE!) and there was the best atmosphere of support and solidarity amongst all the girls that were there.

Very quickly I learned that I was not alone. Everyone was somewhat struggling to deal with the highs and lows of graduate life. There is so much pressure to know what you are doing as soon as you leave University, to get a job and not move back to the family home. To show on Instagram that you are living the high life, free from education and your parents. However in reality it’s a lot more lonely than that. Constant job applications leave you dealing with a lot of rejection, quite often moving to a new city where you know very few people and struggling to find financial balance after the drain of student life.

Ultimately, there is no correct path. I met girls who had moved country to find their dream job, girls who had moved back in with their parents but were loving their new job, girls who were still looking for a job, girls living with their boyfriends, friends, strangers, girls who had absolutely no idea what they were doing and just came to meet new people. It was so refreshing. I had met nobody there before, but it didn’t matter. There was a strong sense of community and I left truly feeling that I had a great support group of other girls who would be there if I had a question, even if they were just online!

So if you’ve just graduated, a massive congratulations! University was hard, but I think life as a graduate might be slightly harder. Most importantly though, you’re not alone! Reach out to your friends, chat to the other graduates you meet in your office, try and put yourself out there to meet new people, because chances are, they are feeling as nervous and overwhelmed as you!

Gals who graduate logo, Bronte King

Dear Diary… Is it Summer yet?

Summer is so close I can almost smell the suncream. That feeling of waking up and flopping downstairs, the days stretching out ahead of you with the song of the Summer (I’m calling Avicci SOS or I don’t care by Sheeran & Bieber) blasting on the radio. The good times.

This will essentially be my last ‘free’ Summer, no work, no university to prepare for, no need to find a Summer job. It will be bliss. It’ll be first Summer since I left school that I will be going on a Summer holiday, so naturally I have an ASOS board named “Holidaze” with some sunshine and cocktail emojis with about a thousand items on it. Considering I’m not planning on finding an intermediary job and I will no longer receive a student loan, it’s certainly going to be a fun time for my bank balance. But at least I’ll have a cute yellow and white spotty bikini…

I have so many exciting things planned for the Summer that I almost cannot believe it. Not only am I going to graduate University after a long five years (I did a year abroad!) I have some amazing and exciting trips planned with friends and family. I also have big plans for this blog, creating content all about preparing for the big move and my Summer adventures.

We are so lucky to have plans to explore the UK as well as travelling abroad. From travelling to the West Coast of Scotland with our friends and visiting my family, to spending a week on the beaches of Norfolk with my boyfriend’s (and my half) gorgeous golden retriever, I love taking the time to appreciate my own country.

However since the UK does not have the most reliable climate (although I am hoping to not repeat last Summer’s 32 degrees in London, that was unbearable) we also have a couple of trips abroad.

According to both our parents, choosing to go to Malta for your grad trip is a slightly random choice (with both parents questioning whether or not Malta actually has any beaches…) but I cannot wait to explore the island with some friends. It appears to have the perfect mix between sun, sea and culture and the Maltese cuisine looks like an incredible array of seafood and pasta. Heaven.

We are also so lucky to be travelling to the States with my boyfriend’s family for two weeks of pure relaxation in South Carolina. I have only been to the States once before so I am so excited to explore a different area and meet some of my boyfriend’s family for the first time!

Amongst this whirlwind I will also need to find a flat and a job lol. But let’s forget about that for now and keep scrolling through the endless straw hats on ASOS I am trying to convince myself I will suit and work out which colour of nail varnish will match that yellow bikini…

If you have any plans for the Summer then let me know in the comments! Also if you have any recommendations for Malta then I would love to hear them. We are staying in the North of the Island near St. Pauls bay but are definitely planning on travelling around!