Some of you might have started considering what your next moves are; if you’ll get a job or start a masters course or maybe even a doctorate. Whether you are thinking of going into employment or going onto further education, you will be facing the big decision about whether to stay at Manchester or to go to a different and new city/university.
I found myself in a similar situation last year (and the year before) when I was wondering whether to do a masters at Manchester and, a year later, whether to do a PhD here too. It’s a monumental moment in your life, to stay in the same location for seven years is a tough decision; do you stay or do you go?
Firstly, check with Careers at the Uni. They will be able to offer you specialist advice catered to your field and career path you are considering. They can also provide you with information on taster sessions on masters courses, internships, CVs and funding opportunities.
Secondly, keep an open mind. I ended up staying despite being determined to leave at the start of my final year of my undergraduate. Realising that I could make a fresh start without leaving the city made me open my eyes to the opportunities which were right in front of me here at Manchester. Since starting my PhD, I have moved away from the student area to a completely new and unfamiliar area of Manchester. This meant that everything was new, from my local shops and pubs to my commute to uni. Through this move, I feel like where I live is more of a home than a student house and my daily routine is completely different to the routine of my undergraduate years. By keeping an open mind, I have managed to make Manchester feel like a new city. So, don’t let the thought of staying in the same place put you off seeing what Manchester has to offer after you graduate.
Be independent in your decision
Remember that whether you stay or go is a personal decision. If you’re thinking about PhDs, think about your current relationships with your tutors; who could be a good supervisor to you? Who do you think you will be able to get on with for three years? If you’re considering a masters, what are the courses at other universities like? Are you eligible for fast-track into a masters at Manchester, or even a bursary? Finally, if you’re thinking about employment, what is Manchester like for your career path? Do you see yourself here for another year, three years, five years? Are there more opportunities elsewhere? Remember that the place you choose could be a permanent home for the coming years, so don’t let others influence your decision.
Whatever you decide, be confident in your decision. You don’t gain much in regretting and every path will lead you to somewhere new.