Hands down, the best thing you can do for your career development is to find yourself a mentor while you are still at university. A great mentor can give you industry insight, assist you with the transition to graduate employment and introduce you to professional networks.
Be inspired…or not. Find out what it’s like to have the career you think you want – you never know, it might actually put you off and completely change your direction. On the flipside, you may have a mentor in a different industry to where you thought you were heading, which can open you up to opportunities you hadn’t even considered.
Whatever happens, it’s great to get some insight into your dream career vs the reality.
Mentors know what it is like to succeed professionally, which is different to succeeding academically. Studying at university can absolutely prepare you for parts of your chosen career, but not all of it. A mentor can help you navigate the world of employability skills, whether that’s working well in a team, being able to communicate effectively with your managers and colleagues, or resolving conflict in the workplace.
Having a mentor can provide you with an invaluable opportunity to find out the areas you may struggle with and learn more about these on-the-job skills before you leave university.
It’s not what you know, but who you know. Studies show that over 85% of current vacant job positions filled over 2015 and 2016 weren’t even advertised, but were filled through networking. A mentor can help open doors to opportunities that you may not have even heard about otherwise.
So now we’ve convinced you, join NEXT STEP: Industry Mentoring! The program matches penultimate and final year Curtin students with industry mentors, including Curtin alumni, staff and friends, currently working in an industry similar to the student’s field of study or area of interest. Applications close Friday 28 April.