Tuesday, 12 July 2011

Why I am actually very lucky

Marinading my brain in wine
My last post was a bit complaining and today I have had a brilliant day with Kat but that’s not what I want to write about. Well I do a bit: this morning I got up at 7am. Yes you read that right. My mother needed her fashion advisor and as the car was going in the garage I needed to go with her when she was going out at 7.30 because my brother needed to be dropped off at work for an 8am start. So therefore being the amazing daughter I am I sacrificed my sleep and got up really early. She did take me for a coffee so fair’s fair. Anyway I talked her into getting 3 lovely new tops and a surprisingly nice pair of leather sling-backs. In the afternoon mum took me over to meet Kat coming off the bus so we could have a catch up. We met at 2.45 and we parted at 5.45 and I don’t think we stopped talking the whole time! It was so nice to see her again since we haven’t had a proper catch up since Easter! And I wasn’t up to much at Easter as I had just made a rather important decision that had left me rather sad so I wasn’t my usual cheerful self. Be that as it may Kat found a lovely pair of suede courts and skinny jeans in the sale, but the real find of the day was an ice cube tray that made ice cubes in the shapes of brains!!!! Proper big brains too, well like a cat size brain with squiggles and everything. Decided as I am off to do neurology research that it was entirely appropriate!

Anyway that brings me back to the point of why I am lucky; this placement. I am on a four year course that includes a year in industry where the faculty helps us to find jobs for a year to help us get experience and contact to help us get better jobs when we graduate. It really works since the uni has one of the best postgrad employment rates in the country! But this year the jobs have been really sparse. With Pfizer going bust a lot of placement opportunities were lost and the market just can’t afford to take students on. A lot of my friends resorted to looking at international placements or unpaid placements just to find something. Even some the placements that you thought were safe weren’t as proved when Harvard retracted their offers for placements as they didn’t get the funding they needed. So everyone started applying for everything which just increased competition! About  a month ago a placement came out working for McDonalds and everyone laughed but then about a week later people realised that they really needed a placement and the pay wasn’t bad so lots of people applied. It’s a sign of how desperate people are now. I think nearly all of my friends are placed now and we are being sneezed across a map with people in NY, France, Ireland, UK, Spain and more! But these placements were gained through a lot of hard work, willing to work for free and being awesome. The Sydney placement was emailed round early this year and I thought it looked really interesting but with all other placements that I had applied to I was expecting to hear a big fat nothing back. But to my surprise, out of the 30+ of us that applied, I was shortlisted as one of the 8 they wanted to interview. Because of the time difference and my surname I was the first to be interviewed at 7.30AM!!!! But thankfully it was only a phone interview but because the phone in my house was an old cord phone and the phone line was at the foot of the stairs, I was sitting at the bottom of the stairs in my pjs and dressing gown with a cup of tea for my interview! At the end of the interview I mentioned that I was sitting there with a cup of tea and the reply I got was: “Well so you should be; you’re British!” I thought it went fairly well but I felt I came off slightly unprofessionally from giggling too much. They didn’t think so as later that day at about 3PM I got an email offering me one of their placements!!!! It was so sudden and such a surprise. I called my parents and when they sarcastically answered the phone with “So, you going to Oz then?” I replied with “Well I can if I want!” I was sooo excited just to be offered it. I thought about it overnight and confirmed in the morning. I could tell that  my friends were happy for me but I could tell that some were already feeling the pressure to get a placement and some just plain didn’t want me to go that far away so I tried not to talk about it too much. As the months went on, myself and the two other girls offered a placement in Sydney (Eloise and Georgina) plodded along with signing paper work, getting visa applications going etc. The rest of my friends got more and more worried about placements and gradually they were placed.

But the point of this post is that although I am finding it very stressful preparing, I am thoroughly excited and looking forwards to my year in Oz.

G’day mate!