What should I do after graduation? I am totally confused. Don’t know what next?
If such questions are bothering you, you are not alone. Every college student goes through this phase (especially in the last year) and while you will have to figure this out yourself, the list below presents some of the options that you may consider and could be a good starting point.
When it comes to starting your career, keep these basic rules in mind –
1. Don’t worry too much about money at the start of your career, even if your career goal is to earn LOT of money (nothing wrong with that) eventually! In initial few years, your focus should be more on learning than earning. Remember Amir Khan’s dialogue from 3 idiots “Baccha kabil bano, kabil … kamyabi to sali jhak maar ke peeche bhagegi”
2. Choose a career that you think would make you happy. It is easier said than done. First of all, figuring out what makes you happy requires lot of soul searching and many times, even after doing that you may not have any clue on what you want from your life. But what you can certainly do is not choosing a career that you know would surely make you unhappy. If you hate programming, don’t sit for that software job. If you are really an introvert who would rather be by himself/herself, don’t go for that marketing interview. An extension of this thought is that don’t choose a career that others (parents, society, friends) think would be good for you. Remember you will be living this life; it has to resonate with you.
3. Be prepared for a long haul to achieve success. Pretty much everything is possible if you are willing to work incredibly hard over a long period of time. If you look for shortcuts, or give up too soon – you would be swinging from one job to another without really being content.
So with these 3 rules in mind, here are the 8 common career options you could consider for life after graduation –
1. Campus Placement: Bored of studying? If you don’t want to study further or at least for few years and want to earn your own money and get a feel of the real world, then doing a job is a good option. This will give you some direction to your career and you will get some more time to know what else you want in your life, that too at the expense of someone else’s money. You can go for private/ public sector jobs. Indian market is flourishing and there are many new opportunities available.
2. Do M.S. /M. Tech: If you love technology, then you can pursue your interests further by doing an M.S. from abroad or M.Tech from the top Indian Institutes like IITs, IISc, NITs and many other universities. For M.S you can give GRE (Graduate Record Examinations) and for M.Tech you can give GATE (Graduate Aptitude Test in Engineering).
3. Go for an MBA: If you imagine yourself working for an MNC, managing people, resources and great deals for the company, leading a group of people as a project manager then MBA is a great choice for you. But again just don’t do it because your friends want to do it or an MBA offers high salary. In PGP (Post Graduate Program), which almost all management colleges in India offer, you may specialize in your area of interests like HR, Marketing, and Sales etc. In India, CAT (Common Admission Test) serves as a gateway for an MBA at the IIMs and many other leading institutes. There are some other popular colleges which have their own entrance exams like XAT (Xavier), NMAT, SNAP, CMAT, TISS, IRMA etc. For MBA from abroad you can write GMAT.
Remember an MBA is mostly the last chance you would have to make a career switch, so use this chance judiciously. You can always go for an MBA after 2 years of working in technology domain but no other way round. A bit of work ex. also makes your MBA experience richer as you are able to appreciate the concepts taught and can relate them to real world situations.
4. Join Civil Services: If you want to change the system in India, then get in the system and clean it. If you want to serve the nation and play an important role in building the country then join Civil Services. The UPSC (Union Public Services Commission) offers various options like civil services (IAS, IFS, IRS, IPS), engineering services, economic services, forest services etc.
5. Join Defense Services: If you get goose bumps every time you see the men in uniform and want to live life on the edge and have the courage to sacrifice everything for India, then join the Indian Army, the Indian Navy or the Indian Air Force. You can also join the technical staff by applying through the University Entry Scheme (UES), apply on their respective websites or appear for the AFCAT (Air Force Common Admission Test). Also, you can apply for flying positions in Indian Air Force by clearing AFCAT.
6. Start your own company: Entrepreneurship can be the best option to chase your dreams and interests on your own terms. If you have a brilliant idea, are comfortable taking risks and have confidence in yourself, then go ahead and be your own boss.
7. Social Service: Every time you see small children serving you a chai or people dying of hunger or poverty, and you feel the pain, curse yourself for being helpless, then go and work for them. Maybe it won’t be that rewarding or offering a great 6 digit salary, but the contentment you will get will be priceless. Bring the change you wish to see. It’s never too late for it. Moreover, the salaries in social sector are now changing for better.
8. Explore the artist in you: What else do you want from life when your passion is your profession. If dancing, writing, photography or doing theatre is your passion and did engineering under parental pressure; even now it’s not too late. Get the professional training and chase your dreams. I bet you will see no other person happier and satisfied than yourself on this planet. There are far too many examples these days where people are pursuing really offbeat careers and days of choosing a ‘safe’ job are behind us – with increasing globalization and explosion of internet technologies, there are opportunities in every field.
Hope this helps. If you have any specific career queries that you would like to ask Internshala, leave them in comments – we will be most happy to answer!
Image Sources: www.careers.lon.ac.uk/blog/library/index.php/tag/career-choice