Returning volunteer, Meg Jocson-Ong, brings you our latest article on how she grew as an individual during her placement this year.
Confident, communicative, and outgoing. These are words I could use less than often to describe myself before I began my placement. After a last-minute decision, in April 2018, to take on a placement year, I can say nothing but positive and encouraging words for those who are still on edge about taking that leap into the working world.
There were many factors that I considered before deciding that I wanted to go on placement. To be honest, the most contributing factor was gaining knowledge and experience that I simply could not get during term time or from that of a short summer placement of two to three months. Working full time for a period of nine months would make me get a fuller grasp of the role and the whole experience itself.
In the beginning, I was only applying to specific fields that were in my field of degree (Communications and Media Studies), such as Marketing and PR, as I already had gained experience in both from my past work experiences. However, after a few weeks of one-sided email conversations and over a hundred failed applications, I decided to broaden my options and apply for placements outside of my comfort zone.
Production, procurement, and photography are just a few fields I applied to. Looking back at my excel sheet of applications, I applied for placements in 15 different fields – and eventually ended up securing a sales role at Dolby Laboratories.
No words can describe what I’ve gone through to get to where I am today (in terms of placement applications). All the tears, late nights and constant conversations with my peers, parents, and placement tutors have all gone to good use because without going through all that, I wouldn’t have found my place here at Dolby. It strengthened my perseverance, patience, determination, confidence and drive. I just never gave up.
Coming into my placement, I considered myself quite a shy and quiet person, who didn’t voice her opinion as often as she liked. However, during my 7thmonths as a sales placement student, I can confidently say that I have changed for the better. Everything leading up to this moment has influenced my outlook on life and how I view situations – whether it’s professional or personal. I’ll be coming back to Loughborough with a brighter smile on my face and a straighter train of thought as I continue to set a clearer direction as to where I want to be in my career, and finally setting realistic goals for my future.
For those who are still undecided about taking on a placement, unsure of your plans post-graduation, or just need a year of experience away from the textbooks, I highly recommend you apply for a placement year. If you’re on a 3-year degree (like I was) and worried about transitioning into a sandwich degree, I can assure you that with the help of the careers centre at Loughborough, your transition will be smooth sailing and you’ll be able to get yourself out into the working world sooner than you know it.
Just always remember to be brave, remain yourself, have confidence and lastly, never give up.
Featured image by: Omeiza Haruna