Student Case Studies: Aisha
Aisha – 1st Year BA (Hons) Politics and Philosophy student 2017/18
Aisha strongly recommends Careers to other students:
“If they just look into what Careers can offer, they’ll start getting into it – looking into one thing, they’ll find out about another thing. One thing leads to another and they’ll start to develop both themselves and their ideas for their future.”
Aisha’s journey to Lancaster University
Aisha did her A levels at a Girls College that particularly encouraged aspiration to science and medical careers but she was uncertain about her future direction until she discovered her academic interest in Politics through A level study. She wanted to go to a good university while staying living at home so now commutes daily to Lancaster.
Accessing support from Lancaster University Careers Services
When she started at Lancaster University, Aisha soon realised that Careers could help her: “I was not so sure about what I wanted to do but Careers gave me opportunities to develop my thinking and my prospects of what to do in the future. They showed me different job prospects and I saw so many jobs that I could do”. She was reassured to know that the university does not just help you with your studies then throw you out into the world when you finish.
Aisha is still open minded about her future but is considering either continuing on to a Master’s Degree or possibly a research and policy-making role in the Civil Service. She found out about Civil Service opportunities through on-campus workshops hosted by Careers and through the Capital Connections Programme, which included a visit to the Civil Service to find out about the Fast Track Graduate scheme; this insight session really broadened her knowledge. Aisha particularly appreciated that the Capital Connections residential trip to London was fully funded by Careers. She thinks it was great that students whose backgrounds mean they have limited funds did not have the dilemma of taking up a great opportunity while stressing about the money side. The networking session with Lancaster alumni who are now living and working in London was a great way not only to practice networking but also to get tips for the future from those from similar backgrounds who have made the move to London.
Having already planned to get work experience and do some volunteering, Aisha found the Lancaster Award really useful for bringing all her extra-curricular activity under one umbrella. She thinks it is a really clever idea that you can earn an Award this way. It also lead to finding out about other opportunities and she has attended a number of Careers workshops. The CV writing and interview workshops really helped with applying for and getting her summer work experience placement in Strategy and Planning with her home town’s Local Authority.
The Future Leaders Experiences Programme changed Aisha’s previous stereotypical image of leadership as that of extroverted corporate CEOs. After meeting different types of leaders, such as those that make our communities work and who don’t have extroverted personalities, her knowledge was broadened and she was inspired by realistic goals. Her confidence increased as she realised that she can mould herself to be a leader.
Aisha’s advice to other students: “Even if they have a specific mind-set about doing one particular thing, if they go to Careers, they might find out about something they didn’t know and broaden their thinking. There are so many opportunities that can be discovered through Careers.”