By on July 21st, 2023


Life after graduation:the guide

It can be hard to know what the next steps might be to take after university. You may be unsure of what career path to embark on or if the working world is currently right for you. With graduation season here, the ultimate question for many is, what’s next?

To help you prepare for post university life, we have put together a guide of useful information.




The best thing about being at university is the number of friends you make. In your student accommodation, during seminars, events, or societies. By the time you leave university you’ll have so many new friendships but don’t be disheartened if you lose touch with a few when starting the next chapter of your lives. This is all totally normal, and you’ll make time for the people you want to stay in contact with. You could even make a pact to meet up every other month in a central location!

Update your CV

Yes, this may be a boring life admin task. But, this is your chance to show off everything that university­­ has taught you! It’s not just studying that counts, part-time experience, volunteering and hobbies are all valued by employers so get it written down. Interacting on LinkedIn is also a great way of networking and finding your dream job, so it is a good idea to keep your profile up to date and relevant.

Personal Development

You may think your days of learning are now over, but the reality is you never stop. There are lots of career paths and businesses that will offer opportunities to gain further training whilst you’re employed by them, which will sometimes be funded by the company.

Attend webinars and workshops!

Many are free to attend, offering you industry updates, trends, and the chance to network with like-minded individuals.

Identify your strengths and weaknesses

If you are still uncertain of what is next for you after graduation, understanding your strengths and expertise can help you identify which direction to steer your career in.


Study a postgraduate course

If you are considering an academic career, or wanting to change direction from your degree, doing a postgraduate course can be a good option to consider. You could complete postgraduate study, giving you a chance to travel and experience a different culture whilst furthering your studies.

If you have decided you’d like to go straight into the working world, the first step is finding the right role for you! Here are some different ways you can find the perfect job for you.


Most universities or student unions tend to have career departments that can assist graduates in finding job opportunities, so make the most of these resources.

Company Websites

Many companies advertise graduate positions directly on their websites, so it is worth exploring careers sections of companies that relate to the industry of your interests and qualifications.


Networking can play an important role in finding job opportunities. Attend industry events, join professional associations, connect with alumni networks, and utilize social media platforms like LinkedIn to expand your professional connections.


an image of a student updating their cv preparing for working life after graduation

an image of a student checking his bank considering saving preparing for life after graduation

Which industries run graduate schemes?

Almost all of them! Meaning you will have plenty of options when it comes to choosing an employer and a future career path. Here are some examples across various industries we’ve picked out.


Graduate schemes are a great way to gain experience within the marketing industry. There are several companies offering marketing graduate schemes including Nestle, Virgin Media and Associated British Foods.


Graduate training programmes are also run by IT and telecommunications companies such as Google, Microsoft, BT and EE in technical and sales-based roles.


All major companies including Barclays, the Lloyds Banking Group and HSBC, have finance graduate finance specialists in demand across all sectors.

Public Services

If you are interested in a career withing public services, you will find a few schemes available directly through governmental departments including armed forces and intelligence services.

Take a year out!

Not sure what to do after graduation? Take a year out! Full time work may not be for everyone, so it is important to take time out to experience new things. This is your chance to volunteer, learn new skills, save money and travel, experiencing new cultures.

Remember, this is just the beginning of a lifelong journey, and every experience will contribute to your personal and professional growth. Embrace the unknown and the adventures that awaits and trust the process! Stay in touch and share your post graduation experiences with us @downing_students 


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