In episode 46, we speak to Nate about trying not to panic, living through weird times and the Meadows in summer.
Each episode is a snapshot, a moment, a sneak inside the minds of our graduates. As the world emerges from pandemic paralysis, are our Class of 2021 feeling inspired or inhibited, glad or gloomy, chaotic or calm?
Welcome to Season 2, a little bit of the same but quite a lot different. Subscribe now and find out what everyone is up to and how they feel about life, the last 12 months and future plans.
All opinions expressed are those of the individual and do not necessarily reflect those of the University of Edinburgh.
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Music: Since When by Mise Darling from freemusicarchive.org
Artwork: Vector created by redgreystock from www.freepik.com
This is a snapshot, a moment, a sneak inside the minds of our graduates. This is season two, class of 2021. A little bit of the same but quite a lot different.
I'm Nate, I am officially a history graduate and no longer a student. And that is weird. I am currently in Devon back at my parents place seeking jobs.
I was very much hoping to be able to sort of get a job straight out of uni. And I think my plan was always to go where the jobs would be. But with the pandemic, it seemed increasingly unlikely that I will be able to get something in a field I was particularly interested in. And I am of too nervous a disposition to be willing to pay rent for indefinite number of months without a job. And so I thought I would come back here, search for jobs, and hope that there will be one in a city that will be reachable.
I'm trying not to take it sort of too badly, I think it's very easy to get overwhelmed and sort of feel like I'm a failure, especially when I've got a couple of friends who are going on to get proper jobs and sort of being able to get their own places. But I'm kind of accepting that, because of the pandemic, and just the general economy. It's something that I kind of just have to deal with. And so I'm trying to keep on that level, and not panic or freak out too much.
I sort of try and exercise in the mornings, and then spend most of the rest of the day looking for jobs. Kind of accepting that it's because I'm looking in the field of kind of media, publishing journalism, that sort of thing, kind of accepting that it's not going to be an easy field to break into. And then on top of that, I guess it's just kind of trying to force myself to remember that it's not necessarily a comment on me that there are no jobs available. That no one really could have known that the pandemic was going to happen. And so it's just kind of reminding myself that I couldn't have foreseen this, and that obviously, every business is struggling. And so it's not really my fault if they can't take on people at the moment. I've just got to keep on and hope that at some point, the economy will open back up a bit, and someone will want me.
I definitely feel under pressure now. I think the first lockdown was actually quite pleasant. I mean, obviously, not if you have serious financial issues, but both my parents had jobs. And it was obviously the summer, so I didn't have any uni work. So I basically had a place to stay. Because it's Devon, it's not very busy around where I am. So it was reasonably easy to get outside for a bit without endangering anyone, there was less sort of pressure to get out. And you could just take a bit of time to look after yourself. And obviously everyone was struggling in their own way. And so you felt that it was very much acceptable to just take care of yourself. And that was an absolutely fine baseline.
Because of the way I treated first and second year, it wasn't as drastic for a number of reasons. So I was one of the idiots who tried really hard in first and second year even though it didn't matter that much. And also I was never that into the whole clubbing scene or anything. And so not going out wasn't that much of a big deal for me. I've got lots of friends who are like, oh, yeah, clubs are reopening let's book all the nights and I just don't care. I guess the fact that it's been sort of nonstop disruption for people in our year and the year before and the year after, because first year was sort of strikes and the beast from the east. Second year, I think we got off fairly scot free. Third year was strikes. And then COVID and fourth year was whether we're going to be hybrid learning online learning. So it hasn't been quite as distinct as it might have been for some people yeah, it's a very weird time.
I found myself largely cutting down to the bare essentials. I was lucky enough that because I was in a relationship we could have a sort of support bubble so I could go to their flat neck come to mind. And that meant that I wasn't just seeing my flatmates, but outside of her flat and my flat. I really didn't see many people. You didn't put as much effort into sort of getting to know people from your various sort of modules and stuff. And I didn't put as much effort into staying in touch with people who I would kind of see once every couple of months, but not more than that. So yeah, it was very much like pared down minimalist. And then at the end of this summer, as things began to open up, it was suddenly like, Oh, crap, I've got to meet everyone I haven't seen for a year before I go home.
For starters, I love the city. And so in better times, if a job opportunity arose in Edinburgh, I would snap it up in an instant and happily lived there again, because it's, it's just a great city. It wasn't like I'm leaving Edinburgh, I shall never see it again.I would like to live there whenever possible. And Devon is not my long term goal.
I think I probably have changed a lot. But I don't know how much of that is due to university and how much is that just, I'm four years older than I was, obviously had to become a lot more independent. And I think, probably a lot more chill than I was in first year.
I have a Master's lined up and I decided to take a year out, because I didn't know if it will be online learning again. And I just kind of wanted a year out because I've been in academia, non-stop since I was a wee lad. So I wanted to experience the real world for a little bit. Yeah, I have no real concrete plans, I'd like to get something in publishing or journalism or something like that. At the moment, I have no sort of concrete vision of where I'm going to be, what city I'm going to be living in who I'm going to be living with what job I'm going to be doing. I think at this point, just getting a job that I don't hate in a place that I don't hate would be fantastic.
For me, I think I'm going to start off with looking at generally graduate jobs because they're the most achievable in these fields that I'm really interested in. I've already sort of applied to a lot of things It was literally sort of as soon as I'd got back and settled in for a day, it was straight back on to looking for jobs. Obviously, they're going to be thin on the ground. And so I might start moving on to just normal jobs kind of retail, anything like that. If nothing happens for me for a year and I don't get into anything I'm particularly interested in, then at least all of them some money so I can help pay for this Master's in the future. And that will hopefully redirect me in something I'm interested in. But if something better does come up, or I find myself making headway in that world anyway, then I can always give that one a miss.
We also ask our graduates to share a place somewhere special somewhere we can get together when all this is finished.
Honestly, it's a very basic answer. But just the Meadows in summer is just a glorious, glorious place. And it's it's sort of like my happy place in my head. It's so wonderful. It's got vibrancy and it's alive but it's not like one of the London parks where it was just absolutely rammed and it's kind of big enough that it can contain however many people you want. There's no there's no one spot I think we generally end up going for the bit of grass in the middle of the jawbone walks you know the ones that come down from Quartermile and like bisect, the Meadows that little bit of grass, because obviously most of us are either coming from Marchmont or Bruntsfield or the University itself Whether the pizza van is there or not is a complete gamble on any day. But on this day, it is there. And in my head obviously it's it's sunny, which it's, to be fair, for the summers I have very nice summers in Scotland, which I wasn't expecting.
Thank you for listening. Join us next time for another graduate and another story.
If this conversation has raised more questions than answers, then you might find it helpful to speak to someone. Speaking with a Careers Consultant can be a great way to get some answers. Simply log on to MyCareer Hub to make an appointment. And don't forget that you can still use everything on offer from the Careers Service as a recent graduate.
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