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I made the decision during my second year of university to leave. I wasn’t happy with my degree and I knew I wouldn’t have made it through third year without having a breakdown. I found my way out and got my dream apprenticeship. But even though I thought I was in the clear, I still had some hurdles to overcome. I’ve still got a lot to learn but here are three things I’ve learnt that helped with my transition into the working world.
Change in Learning style
Before I managed with 3 days a week at university. But now I’m at work 9-5, 5 days a week. I had trouble juggling the work/coursework divide – I would set a day aside for coursework and pre-work and end up being distracted by work or the sneaky check of the news and ASOS (don’t tell!). But after 7 months of trying different things I have found what works for me. I set out my day on my work calendar of what I need to do, whether it’s work or coursework. It also helps me track my 20% off the job learning. If I find myself with a spare moment unsure what to do – I check my calendar and I find a task to complete. WhiteHat also has breakfast sessions and skills workshops that help you with coursework and allow you to learn from other apprentices.
I thought my social life was going to be non-existent after I left university, but when you start working you’ll have all these opportunities to meet new people and make friends, whether it’s at work or attending events. Take advantage of this. The best thing about WhiteHat is they’re just more than an apprenticeship provider, we’re a community. I’ve been lucky to attend networking events and skills sessions where I’ve met the most amazing people and learnt so much that will help me in the future.
Lecture hall to the office
I think this where I struggled the most. I had a hard time adapting to what I was used to, which was three hour days, three days a week, to a new reality, which was 9-5 staring at the computer for long periods of time and going home exhausted.The HSE recommends a 5-10 minute break after 50-60 minutes continuous screen time, which should be taken away from your desk/laptop. During your 5 minutes break, why not go make yourself a cup of tea or do some people watching out a window. Give your poor eyes a rest for a bit and trust me, you’ll feel better at the end of the day.
Like I said I’ve still got a lot to learn but I’ve found these 3 things has helped me feel more settled. Don’t be afraid to ask for help, you’ll be surprised with the amount of support you have around you.