By Rowan Kunz, Art of Smart CEO
You’ve finished the HSC, received your marks and ATAR, and it’s time to start thinking about your life beyond high school.
If you’ve got a career goal in mind or a particular path you want to pursue, you need to start putting your goals into action in 2019.
We’re going to take you through your first steps to take in 2019 to make sure you kick those career goals out of the park.
Step 1: Figure Out Your First Step for the Long Term
If you’ve been accepted into a University course already, click here!
If you aren’t enrolled in a University course, or are still deciding on which course to apply for:
If you have a particular career path in mind, or if you’re interested in a couple of different pathways, your first step should be figuring out what qualifications or education you need to undertake to enter that industry or career.
For example, if you want to become an engineer, you’d best start looking into what University course you need to take to get into the career path you’re interested in.
There are many different courses available at University, with a variety of different majors and streams, so it’s best to start thinking about what course will be best for you in light of your long term plan.
Check out the entry requirements and key dates for applying to your dream university course on the UAC Website.
Next, you want to apply and receive a UAC Offer:
UAC Offers are released through a set of ’rounds’ starting in mid-September of the HSC Year and ending in July the following year.
Some institutions have programs called ‘early round offers’ where offers into a university course are offered before ATARs are released.
You will only receive one offer per round. That offer will be for your highest preference for which you have qualified. You do not need to accept this offer if you don’t want to. Accepting your offer doesn’t stop you from being considered in later rounds unless it remains your first preference during a later offer.
This means that if you’ve received an offer for your first preference, you will not be offered anything for your lower preferences unless you change your preferences.
For more information on UAC offers check out the Art of Smart guide to UAC offers and getting into your dream uni course.
But what happens if I don’t get that dream offer?
First of all, don’t panic! There are many other options to get into university and into your dream career.
UTS Insearch is a foundation program where you study your 1st year at university with UTS Insearch and then gain guaranteed entry into the 2nd year of your dream course!
What’s great about UTS Insearch as a pathway is that you study and learn with UTS lecturers, and receive extra support with study and leadership programs to help you grow, develop your skills and thrive at university.
So you enter into the 2nd year of your dream degree at UTS, haven’t lost any time, and have all these EXTRA skills and opportunities that UTS students haven’t had access to in their 1st year!
Importantly, the first-year UTS Insearch diplomas are developed in collaboration with UTS, meaning you’re getting a world-class university education from Day 1!
If you’ve already been accepted or are enrolled in a University course:
First of all, congrats! You’re well on your way along your dream career path.
Secondly, it’s time to start thinking about the major/s you’re going to pursue within your degree and the subjects you’re going to take that will set you up for the particular pathway you want to pursue.
Using the example of Engineering again, if you’re wanting to go into the field of Electrical Engineering, you want to make sure you’re taking that particular major as part of your degree and that you’re doing subjects that satisfy that major, giving you the skills and knowledge you need.
Every university is different and there will be different ways to achieve this for whatever pathway you’re wanting to pursue, so it’s best to contact your faculty to discuss your individual needs and options.
Step 2: Get to Work!
Now that you’re all set with university it’s time to work on those career skills! It’s so important to gain work experience (and not only in the industry you’re wanting to enter!) to cultivate the skills you’ll need for your dream career.
To kick those career goals out of the park you need to, most importantly, have a killer resume and cover letter.
There’s a ridiculous amount of information on how to write a good resume but here are the important things to keep in mind when writing yours:
- Keep it short, 1-2 single-sided A4 pages max!
- Include your (correct) contact details, including an email and phone number.
- Have someone else proofread for typos and mistakes (it happens to the best of us!)
For writing a good cover letter, the key is to stand out from the crowd and make the recruiter want to hear more about you!
Make sure to talk about why you’re passionate about the job or the industry, talk about why you want to work for that company in particular and why you love it, and talk about your accomplishments while at school or in the workforce if you have experience.
But perhaps, most importantly, inject some humour and personality in your cover letter. Recruiters have read “Dear Sir/Madam, I am writing to express my interest in [x,y,z]...” hundreds of times. Stand out from the crowd by writing like a real person, and not a cover-letter writing robot.
About the Author: Rowan Kunz is the Founder and CEO of Art of Smart Education, an award-winning provider of world-class tutoring and inspirational mentoring. Rowan has partnered with UTS Insearch, the pathway to UTS, for a Q&A webinar on ATAR release day (14 December 2018) and presentations at UTS Info Day (15 December 2018) to help students achieve their study goals. Rowan was also a keynote speaker at UTS Insearch Leadership Program.