“Be confident in who you are and be proud of who you are becoming”
Did you enjoy your time in education?
I enjoyed the learning environment and took a particular interest in IT, but towards the end of secondary school I wasn’t sure of my next steps and made a snap decision to study a beauty course at Gower College Swansea. After completing the first year of the course, I decided that it wasn’t for me and I didn’t see myself pursuing a career in the sector, so I enrolled onto an IT course to try and find my path. I struggled to settle into the course, and I started to doubt whether further education was the right next step for me, but I was determined not to give up; Instead of dropping out of the course and leaving college, I decided to complete my second year and transfer onto an employability course to boost my chances of securing employment at the end of my time in education. I worked in two part-time roles alongside the course, first in hospitality, and then in retail, and these experiences really helped to prepare me for the full-time world of work. As my studies came to an end, I contacted the Futures team for support in exploring potential career paths and securing full-time employment.
What shape did your career take post education?
The Futures team encouraged me to apply for an upcoming internship opportunity at Better Jobs, Better Futures; I was apprehensive, but I trusted their advice and I wanted to challenge myself through the recruitment process. I worked closely with my Career Coach to boost my confidence and prepare for the interview, and I worked hard to hone my skills and effectively demonstrate my relevant experience. I actually enjoyed the interview process as I was able to put all my practice into action, and I was absolutely delighted when I was offered the role! I am so glad I took a leap of faith and listened to the advice and guidance of my coach; I have already learned so much about the working environment and the different people, processes and systems that come together to run a busy and successful business. My perspective on my career has become far more positive and I feel more optimistic about the future and what I can achieve.
When my internship came to an end, I was extremely lucky to be offered a full-time role within the reception team, and I jumped at the opportunity. My confidence continues to grow every day as I am working in a supportive environment with a great group of people. I now have the self-belief to progress in a personal and professional capacity; I am happy and settled, and this really does feel like the start of my career journey!
Are there any career decisions that you regret?
Whilst I didn’t particularly enjoy my roles in retail and hospitality, I don’t have any regrets as they taught me valuable life skills; I found the roles extremely challenging, but they gave me the opportunity to demonstrate my work ethic, resilience and determination. Every decision I have made has brought me closer to where I am today, and I can confidently look back on the positives gained out of every experience.
Is there one thing you wish you’d known when you were younger?
Try not to worry so much! I have always worried about something, whether it was schoolwork, personal circumstances or making decisions, I have always found something to be scared of. Growing up and surrounding myself with the right people has made me realise that there is far more to life than worrying about the future. If I could tell my younger self anything it would be to be bold enough to choose your own path and be strong enough to follow it!
What is your ultimate piece of advice?
No-one is you, and that is your superpower! Celebrate your achievements, take pride in your success, be confident in your dreams and work hard to make them a reality!