Are you starting TY in September? Here are ten tips you should know before starting an exciting new year!
Tip No.1 Get Involved
You’re probably going to hear this a lot during the year but our first tip is to get involved. Transition Year can be seen as a break but also an opportunity. Making Transition Year an opportunity all comes down to you and what you make of it. You will hear people say that Transition Year was boring or a waste of time, however, if you ask them what they did in during the year don’t be a surprised if they say that they didn’t do much. Getting involved is important but so is time management. If you’re getting involved in a lot of things make sure that they don’t clash with each other.
Tip No.2 Organise Your Work Experience Early
One of the most important aspect of TY is work experience. Students all over your county will be looking for the best place to work and that’s why you should organise your work experience as soon as possible. Don’t wait until the month before you start work experience to organise it. Also, try to find work experience in a place you would actually like to work rather than just going to a relative’s shop. The experience is just as important as the work.
Tip No.3 Develop Your Skills
Develop your hobbies and skills. As there’s not so much focus on academia in Transition Year you will find that you have more time for yourself than you did in third year. Use this extra time to perhaps go back to your local Taekwon-Do club or continue learning piano or guitar. Transition Year is all about developing yourself.
Tip No.4 Develop New Skills
As well as developing your existing skills, perhaps try learning something new. You will indefinitely learn new skills in TY such as making a CV and presenting, however, try getting into an extracurricular activity. We recommend coding or a sport. Both can be tricky to get into at the start but once you do, you’ll enjoy it and be happy that you did.
Tip No.5 Research TY Activities and Competitions
Before starting TY, you should know what you’re getting into. Do a bit of research into the activities and competitions you can get involved in and you never know what you might find interesting. The great thing about TY is that there’s something for everyone. From art to science to debating, you’re bound to find something that interests you. If not maybe that’s a project you could take up! Check out a list of competitions you can participate in here.
Tip No.6 Volunteer
TY students receive a lot of praise for their charitable deeds. The opportunity will arise for you to volunteer for a project and we have one piece of advice, do it! Volunteering allows you to meet new people and it looks great on your CV.
Tip No.7 Do Well Creatively and Academically
Depending on how TY is organised in your school, there most likely won’t be a large emphasis on school work, which is nice. Our advice would be that whatever school work, exams or projects you get, you should try to do your best in them. This will at least keep you at a stage where you can still enjoy TY but also be in the position to start 5th year afterwards. Most TY students settle back into an academic year just fine so don’t be worried about “going astray” from school work.
Tip No.8 Get Your School Involved
You might find that your school might not be involved in a programme or competition you want to participate in. If this is the case don’t be afraid to go to your TY coordinator and ask if something can be arranged. This is one of the reasons why it’s important to research what programmes and competitions are available to you. Remember Transition Year is about you and what you make of it.
Tip No.9 Keep Your CV Updated
Throughout the year as you participate in different activities and competitions you should remember to always update your CV. All the information you add will become valuable to an employer when you’re looking for work experience or a Summer job. Download CV Templates here.
Tip No.10 Keep a record of activities you get involved in and stay organised
In some schools you are asked to keep notes on your daily activities in TY, whether it’s learning 1 – 10 in Chinese or any progress you make with Mini-Company. If your school doesn’t do this we advise that you keep some kind of record yourself. Simple bullet points at the back of your school journal would do. You might be thinking about what the point of this is. It’s really just for yourself rather than anyone else. When you want to remember what you discussed last week at a meeting you’ll be able to take out this record and check. At the end of the year when you’re putting together a TY portfolio this record will be very helpful. Also even after TY, it’s nice to able to look back at this record and see all the activities you got involved in. Make sure to always stay organised during the year too. Work towards deadlines and keep on top of everything you need to do. From our own experience in TY, we found ourselves needing to finish a 2000 word essay, while preparing for a Mini-Company competition and finishing that science project that was due a week ago!