My Coaching Experience

Hi there! My name is Sophie and I’m a recent English and Related Literature graduate here at York. The university’s career coaching was invaluable for helping me to decide on my next steps after I graduated, and my mentor was incredibly approachable and generous with her advice. 

Outlining Your Expectations

As a final year student, I was worried that as soon as I submitted my dissertation in the summer, I would be set adrift to handle the increasingly competitive job market. With essay deadlines, weekly seminar preparations, and dissertation meetings to contend with, this seemed like yet another ticking time bomb I had to learn how to deal with. Nonetheless, I booked my first meeting and sat down the night before to outline what I wanted from the experience. Where was I now, and where did I want to be? What skills did I need help with, and in what areas did I shine? What did I want out of my future career—what kind of conversations did I want to have, and what type of people did I want to be working with? Did I want a 9 to 5, or was I looking for something more flexible? These initial questions (and the answers they prompted) helped me to communicate effectively with my coach, so Helen would know exactly where to direct her help, and advise me in the most effective way how to move forward.

Identifying Your Strengths

After my first meeting with Helen, I left our Zoom call with a lot of new information to take away and research. Signposting me to various job sites and support pages, I was able to steadily build up a database of what several career paths could look like, and what skills and experience I needed to make my way in the field. What was the most successful way to introduce my community engagement work to an employer? How could I use the analytical skills I’d gained throughout my degree to the best advantage? What causes was I passionate about, and how could I find a job that made use of that motivation? Helen helped me to narrow down my options so that I could focus on just the few I felt I was the strongest candidate for, and home in on what stages of the application process I needed extra support with.  

Defining Your Journey 

York’s career coaching helped me to identify my strengths, locate various vocations that best suited my interests and skills, and has provided me with a reliable toolkit to overcome the challenges of job hunting. I’ve been invited to interview with many prestigious organisations since I had my first coaching call, which has boosted my confidence when applying to different jobs. If you’re nervous about how to sell yourself to an employer, what makes a top CV, or need some advice about what careers you’re best suited to, York’s career coaching is the perfect place to start defining your professional journey.