By Alex Bean
Like nearly every upcoming graduate I panicked when my final few months of university were approaching and I had not yet decided what I wanted to do, either after University or with my entire life. Surrounded by students who were in the same sinking boat as me and others who knew exactly what they wanted to do, I felt the pressure not only from my own conscious, but from the careers centre who sent newsletters about jobs. every. single. day.
As the months passed, and I handed in my last assignment – the dreaded 8500-word dissertation, I still found myself stuck at what I should do. It seemed that all the graduate jobs that initially interested me were thousands of miles away or you needed 10 years’ experience (which would make me 11).
One day I opened my university email to find yet another career centre newsletter, except this time something sparked my interest ‘Assistant Curator of Communications and Events’ at Hanicke Robins Sanderson. I remember thinking ‘oooooooooo that sounds like a fancy title’ and it was quite close to where I live. Reading the requirements and the roles description, I took a plunge and applied. While this company is based around PR, marketing and organising events particularly in recycling and energy, I was still intrigued, even if I knew nothing about it. About a month or so later I got an email asking to meet for interview. I went, had a second interview and a month and half later, here I am writing this blog post.
My first day was extremely nerve racking, not only did I not get any sleep, but I didn’t know what to expect. Walking into an office for your first ever post-graduate role is never going to be easy, but it was quite a chilled atmosphere. I settled into my little desk (with my own little laptop that is also a touchscreen-both practical and frustrating) and waited for instructions. Paul Sanderson, the curator of us and events of Hanicke Robins Sanderson, made me a fabulous cup of tea and told me to write a small press release. Being a History and English Language graduate I thought I had it under control, but I did not. I started misspelling words, using incorrect punctuation and overall just worrying that I was doing my entire job wrong already. However, this is the most important thing I have learnt over the past few days, you can always improve and learn.
As the next couple of days went by I felt more comfortable in writing press releases, even if parts of it were still wrong. Getting into the role of the job more, I was told to come up with ideas of how to ‘create a buzz’ around Hanicke Robins Sanderson’s conferences using our social media accounts. While this has been the main priority of my role so far, I have also built a flatpack table, made Paul buy a new kettle because I’m fussy and redesigned the office multiple times in my head and shared my ideas (pictures coming soon). I also learnt that I will be attending events and interviewing clients about environmental issues which is extremely nerve racking, but the fact that I know nothing about environmental issues is equally terrifying. However, the thought of being able to learn from Adrienne and Paul and the clients we work with, and expanding my own knowledge and skills, will be rewarding.
Working life is always a scary thought, but so far, I am enjoying it, even if it is early days. I am grateful to this company for allowing me to expand my knowledge and life experiences without having to be 11 and know about rPET and CO2 carbon emissions.
Here’s hoping the next few months carry on this intrigue- keep posted for updates!
Assistant curator ‘of buzz’ and communications and events at Hanicke Robins Sanderson