I Graduated AND Got My Dream Job During a Pandemic!

“I was fast tracked for a role with a company.”

Hear from Bethany as she explains her journey to finding her dream job with Ordnance Survey.

Two months before I graduated in Liberal Arts and Sciences at the University of Surrey I discovered Graduate Mentor. My housemate had started using the platform and after just a few sessions she had managed to secure an internship. She was impressed and recommended I give it a go. It really appealed to me as it offered a more personal service than what I’d seen elsewhere, and it was free!

I found a mentor called Emily on the platform who worked at Ordnance Survey (OS) and sent her this request for a mentoring session,

“Hi Emily, Whilst searching for a mentor, your profile stood out to me, as I too am adventurous and passionate about the outdoors! I have 2 months until my University career is complete and would love some advice about how to get my foot in the door within the outdoors industry. Your area of work, communications, is also similar to the line of work I hope to become involved with. Let me know if the time I have suggested suits you.”

She accepted my request and we were off! Our first chat was great. We had so much in common that we just talked about shared interests. It was really chill, felt very casual and it was very easy to build rapport with her from the get-go. We had four mentoring sessions in total and the main things we covered were CVs and interview prep.

I was so glad to have someone who actually hires graduates in my industry to look at my CV and give specialist advice. I felt that my CV had all the right info on it but I didn’t think it would stand out. Emily turned this around and I ended up with a nice, new shiny CV that would definitely impress a recruiter. I then used this to apply for a range of jobs.

As the weeks passed, we regularly kept in touch on LinkedIn and WhatsApp and she was incredibly supportive and enthusiastic throughout the whole process, then she gave me the best news ever – there was a job at OS and I should go for it! I did it without hesitation. I got to second interview but someone pipped me to the post. However, all was not lost as Emily explained I could now be fast tracked for any future roles.

Things moved quite slowly at that point and I couldn’t rely on this entirely. I succeeded with another job application as a teacher in London and got a job offer. I spoke with Emily and we both weighed up the pros and cons of this job versus a potential future one at OS she was putting together. I really trusted Emily at this point and decided to turn down the school job offer, taking a risk, in the hope the job with OS would actually materialise. Eventually it did, thank goodness! The role was Marketing Executive and I gave this my absolute all to make sure I got it. I am so pleased to report that I did get the job against a lot of competition and I’m loving it. It’s perfect for me!

Without the help of Graduate Mentor my career may not have got off to the best start, especially during a pandemic. It’s a really good, personal way of gaining advice that doesn’t feel formal or dull. Other friends have had similar experiences so why not try it out today!