Stepping stone: Dabble in work life while studying

A hook in reality

If, when you are a student, you work as an intern, have a thesis collaboration or take a student job, you often have an advantage when the real job market calls. However, a spare time job at a café is never irrelevant.

When asking companies what they recommend doing as a student to prepare for the labour market, the answer “work while you’re studying” gets the highest score with 73 %.

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Practical experience is an advantage

“Companies assign high priority to practical use of theoretical knowledge, and if your CV shows that you’ve been working while studying, employers can see that you haven’t only had your nose in the books, but you actually know how to translate knowledge into output. You know about preparation, cooperation, deadlines and everything you need to be able to do at a workplace. This is a huge advantage,” says IDA career counsellor Sanne Mattebjerg.

Facts: Practical experience is an advantage

According to companies, the following will strengthen your position when you are looking for your first job:

Work during your studies
Make sure to write your thesis/final project in collaboration with a company
Start your job search while you are still studying

Stay in touch

If you want to work in the company in which you are working as a student, you will have a head start as you are already a familiar face.

“It’s often easier for an employer to hire a person who they already know. They know you professionally and socially. They’ve eaten lunch with you, you’re linked up to the system, you know the culture and so on,” says Sanne Mattebjerg, and stresses that obviously it is important to do a good job while you are there and to show initiative.

If you have stopped working as a student assistant, a thesis student or an intern, it is a good idea to stay in touch if you wnat to return to the company in a permanent position once you have graduated.

“Try to stay in touch with the place. This may be by offering to present your thesis and by showing up physically if you have a meeting, or just stopping by. Visibility is good!,” says Sanne Mattebjerg.

Working in a café is also relevant

Another important point is to say that you want to be employed when you finished your studies. Because this is not always noticed.

“You should remember to say it out loud. IT’s your own responsibility to ask and express a wish. You can’t expect them to guess what you want. Tell you boss: I’d very much like to continue here, and I picture myself doing this and that. Point at the possibilities yourself and do so in good time before you are to leave,” says Sanne Mattebjerg.

Finally, she states that you should not despair if you have not had a super relevant student job.

“Some people think: I’ve just been serving bruch at a café. Then you should translate what you’ve done into relevant competences: Have you kept duty rosters? Then you can coordinate. Have you balanced the cash register? Then you cna understand finances. Have you worked with many different people? Then you can cooperate. In fact, there is no such thing as irrelevant work experience.”