What is your degree in? International Relations.
What is International Relations? Similar to politics.
So you want to be a politician? No.
It really is quite funny how so many people don’t know what international relations is, and when they find out, they automatically assume you want to become Prime Minister, or become a politician. Me, well I don’t want to do either, I never have, and I probably never will want to be. For me, I loved my degree. I have loved learning about politics, international agreements, why conflict occurs, (not so much political theory), British politics etc, but a career in politics is a no from me.
A lot of people look at you strange when you say you don’t want a career in whatever your degree is, but quite frankly I was 18 when I choose a degree in International Relations without thinking about what career I would want at 22. Obviously just because you become specialised in one topic doesn’t mean you have to follow it your whole working life. In fact, when you look at graduate jobs specification most businesses just want you to have at least a 2.1 and don’t specify a subject.
If I wanted to, I could become a teacher, a journalist, a business consultant, marketing analyst, social media coordinator, human resources manager, merchandising assistant – the list is endless. For me however, there are a few stand out reasons why I don’t want to work in politics.
1 I’m interested in current and political affairs, but not that interested – Yes, I keep up to date with what is going on in the world as I like to be educated, but I don’t want my life to be constantly involved in current or political affairs.
2 I HAVE NEVER WANTED TO BE A POLITICIAN – or a counsellor, or work for a council, or work for an MP. I have considered working in Parliament, but in either HR, communications, or press, not as working as an MP assistant. There was also a time I had this dream during first year that I would land a job in the Foreign and Commonwealth office and have this amazing job that saw me fly off to countries in the commonwealth – realistically I knew this was never going to happen.
3 The application process of getting a job in politics has put me off – Now, here I am talking about Government jobs. The process is long, there are 1000s of applicants, you never know what they are looking for on them online tests that push out the candidates that miss the pass mark based on personal attributes or situational tests, and the assessment days are hard. We have all heard about the Governments Civil Service Fast Stream Service, and yes it is hard, and I was disappointed when I didn’t pass the tests online, but looking back I only applied because I was a politics student and I was meant to apply and get a job in government. Obviously not. For a said department (which I won’t name), I had applied originally in October, did the tests in January, went to the assessment centre in February – unsuccessful because of ROLE PLAY. I passed the interview and the written assessment, but the two role plays, let’s just say they were awful and I had no idea what was even going on. The one thing I learnt that day was that I didn’t want to work in politics, and not in a government department.
4 I want a career that I enjoy (or hope I will enjoy) – If you follow me on Twitter, then you probably know that I want a career in communications, PR, digital marketing, or social media in the sporting industry. That is where my heart lies, but my degree in International Relations has helped provide me with a skill set that I can use in that career choice. I have gained analytical skills from analysing data, creating my own survey, essay writing skills, team work, presenting, creation of power-points and social media through groups tasks and simulations, team work, and research skills. Then I look at my blog, I have been creating content for nearly five years, yes not originally focusing on sport, and primarily on travel, but I enjoy writing, I enjoy social media – thats the career path I want to follow. Who knows, I could go down the communications and PR route in the political sector – but who knows.
Yes, I have previously thought about diplomacy jobs as well, but I know it isn’t for me right now. If I was to further my education, I would do a masters in marketing and not politics. You shouldn’t be scared to sway away from your degree, you should be proud of your degree, but that doesn’t mean you have to get a job in your degree subject.
So there you have it, the reasons why you wont be seeing me in a political job.