What happens when I finish my course?
Preparing for graduation and moving on after studying can be both exciting and daunting. It is a good idea to think about the steps you can take to help you manage the move out of university and look after your mental health.
Preparing for life after university
It is completely normal to have no idea what you want to do after university. This can be stressful, or affect how you feel about yourself, but it is important to remember that many people take months or even years to work out their next steps.
How do I decide what to do next?
- If you are studying a course that could lead onto a specific career, relevant societies will provide information about career options in your field
- Make use of your university or college careers service. This is a great place to help you start thinking about what you might like to do when you finish studying
It may be helpful to remember that lots of graduates describe the process of finding a career as trial and error. Most students do not have a road map planned out – you do not need one!
Maintaining your support network
When you graduate, it is likely that the support networks you have at university may no longer be as easily available.
- Stay in touch with university friends – everyone finds this transition tricky, and hearing from an old friend is reassuring
- Try online support – you can access this wherever you move to
Arranging your healthcare
If you are moving away from your university town and are currently receiving support from your family doctor you will need to plan how the move might affect the support you receive.
- Visit your current family doctor and think about the process of transferring your care to a new family doctor
- Find out where you can register with a new family doctor
- If you are in touch with your community mental health services team or crisis team, make sure you let them know that you are moving and find out how you can access the support you want in your new home
Mental health at work
If you are starting work, it is important to think about how you will manage your mental health in this new environment. You can check online resources to look at the pros and cons of talking to your manager about mental health, and read about other people’s experiences of making the transition out of university and into work on online blogs.