Friday, 17 May 2013

What to do with your English degree? Part 2

Hi guys! As promised, I'm back with a few more career tips for graduates, who have an English degree. I hope you are still interested, and I haven't bored you the last time, so let's see!

4. Journalist

Image taken from Data Miner UK
We have again a case of 'close, but not quite the same'. If you had an interest or even participated in the making of the students' newspaper, and you thought it's challenging and fun to be a journalist, then here is your chance. It is true that in this area you also need a kind of natural talent, but I believe that this is easier than writing a book. If you want to become a journalist you not only need excellent writing skills, but you should also have great communication skills in order to be able to gather background information. Another important factor that you should consider is how much do news affect you. There are cases when journalists have to (sorry for the expression) have the stomach for this job. Moreover, the job of a journalist can be interesting and hard at the same time, you need to be tough or compassionate, depending on the story you need to cover. Keep in mind that every story has two sides, and you should write accordingly, but there are also cases when you need controversy to raise the interest. It wouldn't hurt (it would be for your benefit actually) if you would be curious and sometimes persistent and most of all, committed, because this job requires these abilities. There is a lot of competition, but if you become successful in the world of journalism, your job won't be boring, that's for sure! 

5. Translator

Image taken from Skinner Translation
This is a little tricky, because you need to know at least one other language at an advanced level, in order to become a translator. Sometimes you also need additional postgraduate training or a special certificate, to be able to translate at a professional level, but that varies depending on countries and employers. Many people think that if the translator knows both languages at an advanced level, than his/her job is easy. I beg to differ! It is much harder than they think. This is not just a matter of how well you know a language, you also need to get accustomed with the cultures. Why? Because there are many aspects of the translation that require it. There are things that you should consider for example when you translate from French to English, you should not translate 'Bon Appetite', or when there are measurements in the text, think about such things as pounds and kilogrammes… would you recalculate it or leave it as it is? These are very basic examples, but in literary translation it may happen many times that you have to deal with traditions or rituals that don't exist in the other culture, and would not mean the same thing to the people who speak the language that you need to translate the text to. And I didn't even talk about translating poems. On the other hand, if besides the knowledge of two languages, you are also familiar with the field of business you could enter the world of business translation, where you will meet a lot less of these cases. Personally, I consider translating interesting, but it is sometimes not as rewarding, and not as appreciated as other jobs are. I know, I'm contradictory again, but hopefully you're getting used to it by now:) 

6. Tourist Guide

Image taken from Pasquale Pacicca Guiding and Travel Services
If you have a passion for travelling, history and English is one of your 'fortes', then this is the perfect choice for you. Nonetheless you should be prepared for accepting the fact that you will move to different locations, and will have to deal with different kinds of people. Naturally, if you just got your English degree, you may need to continue studying a bit and get a qualification in order to be a tourist guide in the UK (but this depends again on the various regions and countries). Still, it is worthwhile because you will get to visit a lot of different places (if you don't want to stick to your home town of course), meet new people, and talk about history, in your own manner. The hardest thing is to keep the visitors interested in what you're saying, especially those who don't give a rat's ass about the history of the places (believe me, there will be such individuals). All in all, tourist guiding can be fun and enjoyable, but only for those who would like to do such a job. 

The list goes on and on: freelance copywriter, library assistant, editor, there are the public relations, marketing and communication jobs etc. What you have to remember is that you have a lot of options, so if you just finished college don't panic! Start searching and researching to find out more about what you wanna be:) Till next time!

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