Making friends, passing exams, and the college or university place that lets you pursue your dreams: this is what being a student is all about. However, whilst you’ve got your mind focused solely on studying hard in your chosen subject area, you’re also simultaneously learning some invaluable lessons that will take you far beyond the classroom and into the real world, where work and post-academia life awaits.
These aren’t just skills that could help you stand out in a competitive employment marketplace. They’re the thought processes, competencies, and communication abilities that will stand you in good stead throughout every aspect of your life ahead, including in a social and recreational capacity. Here are some of the invaluable skills you’ll undoubtedly pick up whilst studying, without even noticing.
Managing Your Time, Like a Boss
Right now, you might be starting your day with assignments that need to be submitted within the deadline, errands to run and social obligations to meet. Your success is defined by how well you organize your day and prioritize each task. This is essentially time management in a nutshell.
Finding what works for you, be it post-it notes or incessant phone reminders, is a way to help manage your responsibilities and will help far beyond the remit of studying. Effective time management is something every employer will look for, and it will be important in your home life too. For example, juggling the responsibilities of a career alongside recreational pursuits like being part of a local football team or the best man at your friend’s wedding. Time management enables you to have it all, so long as you prepare and organize efficiently.
Playing Nice Within a Group
On the surface, it’s a group assignment and that means a collective grade. Yet working with others can help you to improve across a number of areas. For example, a group assignment will demand that you learn how to fit in with others, and that you build up an awareness of your colleagues, getting to know the strengths and weaknesses of each individual, in order to find effective ways to then motivate your peers to present to their best standard.
Elements from this process, including the likes of teamwork, collaboration, and communication are also key skills you will likely need for career success and will be generally crucial for your life path ahead, especially when working with others. Perhaps you become a freelance illustrator, for instance, and have to listen attentively to your client in order to deliver work to their standards. There may be disagreements, but this will call for compromise and professionalism, skills that you’ll already have in abundance if you’ve had years of practice with group work in academia.
Making the Most of Free Time
In our digital world, being able to communicate and collaborate with people who might be on the other side of the world is also a vital skill that employers really value. So, your time with friends at a local café or spent playing video games with international participants all counts towards developing excellent, career-boosting communication abilities. Being proficient with online forums is obviously beneficial, as most careers now revolve around online communications, but also getting practice face-to-face is valuable as you can learn to practice basic conversational etiquette.
Don’t Lose Student Savvy
Don’t forget that you’re also building up your financial and strategic savvy as a student. Living on a tight budget is tough, so it’s no wonder you’ll seek out the best store deals and offers to get every dollar’s worth.
It’s another life skill to take forwards and something that, for example, fans of online sports betting swear by. Just as you scour the shelves for a bargain, as a prospective sports bettor, you have to keep a keen eye out for the very best welcome deals and bonus offers available to make your money go further whilst enjoying their favorite sports. It’s just like weighing up which stores have the best sales on, which lenders will give you the best deal on a loan, or which restaurants will suit your appetite as well as your budget.
Being a student really is like a dress rehearsal for your life to come. You’re learning how to be independent, resourceful, responsible, and productive in your own world for now – but you’ll be taking all these skills into the wider world very soon.
So, when you’re in that first job interview, finding your feet in a new neighborhood, or simply living the life all that studying has been geared towards, you can feel safe in the knowledge that you’ve learned an awful lot more than the well-deserved educational qualifications you’ve achieved.