Upskilling Tips for Students
By Amelia Bashford, Misha Manani and Rowan Groat
There are many transferable skills that you can build on throughout your time at university, so you can prepare yourself for applying for internships, schemes and entry-level roles. It is never too early to start! We have compiled advice and resources for you to make the most of your time as a student.
Top Tips for University
Take advantage of the opportunities and services available to you during your degree, because this is a great time to consider and consolidate your career plans, develop your skills and connect with interesting people.
Join Publishing-Related Societies
If your university has a creative writing, literary or journal society, make sure you join at least one. This can be a great way to pursue your passion outside of your studies and meet others with similar interests. Or, if your university does not have a publishing society, why not start one yourself?
Become a Committee Member
This is a relatively easy way to demonstrate your interest in the literary world in one of the aforementioned societies. It’s also a brilliant role to add to your CV and write about in your cover letter, especially as a recent graduate, covering the communication, teamwork, organisation and management skills you developed.
Student Media Groups
It can be difficult to get work experience at a publishing house when you are a student. Instead, why not check if your university has a student newspaper or magazine? If you can join the editorial, design or leadership team, this is another useful avenue to build your skillset while studying, whether you’re certain you want to work in publishing or not.
Utilise the Career Services
Some universities may have a dedicated creative industries career pathway on their platform. If so, take advantage of this. Otherwise, look for resources that can help with interviews, applications and assessments, or try booking an appointment with a careers advisor.
Outside of University
Publishing is a very competitive industry, both inside and outside of London, so it’s great to have some knowledge, insight or experience that will help you stand out and show prospective employers that you have gone out of your way to engage during your studies.
Join The Publishing Post
Why not join one of our teams? Chelsea is more than happy to help and The Post is always accepting new team members. The roles are voluntary, so they aren’t paid, but our experience working on this magazine has been invaluable and incredibly positive! Check out the various teams and how to send an email expressing your interest here.
Work in a Bookshop or Library
This kind of experience is a really good way to highlight your enthusiasm for the publishing process and industry. Working or volunteering in these places will help you obtain a strong understanding of the market through engagement with customers, sales, book displays and marketing campaigns.
Create a Twitter or LinkedIn Account
Connect with people to stay updated on what is going on in the industry and send them a message if you’re feeling bold. In our experience, people working in publishing are always willing to have a chat!
Start a Side Hustle
You could start a free blog via WordPress, become a bookish YouTuber or TikToker, or even launch your own podcast. Check out parts one and two of our previous articles on people in publishing with a side hustle to be inspired.
The Publishing Post aside (of course), there are lots of other resources available to access freely and remotely.
While not student-specific, the SYP is a volunteer-run organisation with regional branches, supporting aspiring and junior publishing professionals across the UK. They host a wide range of interesting events throughout the year, including the annual SYP conference. They also run a blog and a podcast.
Why not check out some of the courses offered via LinkedIn Learning? You can develop your knowledge in a particular niche or try to brush up on skills you think are necessary to work in publishing. You can usually set up a free account through your institution or, if you’ve recently graduated, you can make use of their one-month free trial.
Similar to LinkedIn Learning, this site hosts wide-ranging online courses of varying length, from micro-credentials to online degrees, covering different topics, both specific and general.
Thanks for reading Issue 39 and our first article of 2022! Join us again for Issue 40, where we will cover the first instalment in our social media series: Upskilling Tips for Instagram.