How to get your dream job abroad

Are you looking for a new adventure? A lot of people are interested in working abroad, but they are not fully aware of all the opportunities that are out there. We talked to two successful alumni about their story and what their greatest advice is for anyone how wants to fulfil their dreams abroad!  

Simina’s story (BA English Language 2014, MA English Language and Literature 2015)

“These experiences I had at Essex have facilitated my road to success. The challenges I mostly faced, were financial and cultural, but having the chance to earn some money whilst a student, has definitely helped a lot! I have evolved from a simple volunteer in my first year to the unique Frontrunners scheme at Essex, which offered me the opportunity to gain invaluable work experience in event and project management, and develop confidence in communication, working alongside and being trained by experienced staff in a busy office environment. Liaising with a wide range of people, internal and external to the University, I have also worked as Student Ambassador and Employability Ambassador, while being involved in various extra-curricular activities, such as being a volunteering project leader with the Students’ Union vTeam or Secretary for the Students’ Union Romanian Society. After graduation, I have worked as Volunteering Coordinator for University of Essex Students’ Union for two years. Afterwards, I was offered the role of Liaison Trainee in the Secretariat of the European Parliament.”

Cristina’s story, (BA International Relations 2014, MSc Organised Crime, terrorism and security 2016)

I have always been an enthusiastic person, ready to challenge myself, thus, learning and developing. I chose to follow a bilingual profile during high-school in order to improve my English, hence, having the opportunity to apply at the University of Essex for an undergraduate degree. I studied International Relations and carried on with my postgraduate studies on Organized Crime, Terrorism and Security. I believe that strong lives are motivated by dynamic purposes. Being far from home has always been hard, but if I feel that something is worth fighting for, then I do my best to succeed and achieve my goals. I have always been in love with the University of Essex and that is why I chose working for the Communications and External Relations Department and improve my skills profile. I would classify myself as an EU student who worked hard to get a job in the United Kingdom. All the friendly people that I am working with, made me realise that no matter where you are from, there are opportunities everywhere as long as there are passion, ambition, and determination. I proudly call myself an Essex alumna!

Three top tips:

1 - Get involved

Both Simina and Cristina mentions how valuable the SU and the university have been for them to achieve their dreams. “I encourage all the students to join in all the activities that the SU and university offers, to gain experience, which later on, is indispensable”, says Simina. The University and the SU offer unique opportunities you will not be able to find somewhere else. There are Frontrunner opportunities, SU Jobs, VTeam, Course reps and much more, that will make your CV stand out from the crowd!

2 - Use your transferable skills

Regardless of where in the world you are looking for a job, you can write a good CV by thinking of transferable skills. Transferable skills can be gained from many different situations in life, and it is something that every employer is looking for. Things such as time management, ability to work in a team, leadership, research skills, and project management, are all things you could have developed throughout your university education or during other times in your life!

3 - Use the resources available on campus

The University and the SU have so many resources that are there to help you. The Employability and Careers Centre  has plenty of advice if you are looking for opportunities abroad after graduation! With your usual Essex log in you get access to, a global search engine for finding new jobs.

The Employability and Careers Centre’s website also has loads of other useful resources for helping you get a job abroad. They include resources how to get visas and work permits in different countries, how to find good internships and volunteering experiences abroad, and much more.

Don’t be scared to pop by at their office on Square 2 and ask for help and they will do their best to help you.

If you’re an international student wanting to find a job within the UK, SU Advice on Square 3 can give you information about routes you can take to extend your visa.