A graduate's guide to getting a job
When Jennifer Temelkovska finished her degree, she graduated with the skills and experience to skip the entry level job and land herself a managerial role. Here’s how she did it.
Talking to Jennifer about her university days and the first thing that strikes you is how committed she was to squeezing in every possible learning experience.
“In high school I was never really that person. I pretty much stuck to the sidelines and didn’t get involved much. Going to university opened my eyes a little bit to the world and got me to step outside my own little bubble.
“I pretty much took on any opportunity that was offered or was available to me,” she said.
Before you start, attend University Experience.
“I actually came across ACU in high school when I went to University Experience. We got to sit in a lecture theatre and really get a vibe of what the university was like.” The appeal of ACU was the smaller class sizes, where meaningful relationships between staff and students could be built.
“There was more of a community culture than at other unis and I could tell there was a lot of support from the staff. If you had questions you could reach out to them.
"That kind of relationship is something you don’t really get a chance to do at larger universities.”
On the day, Jennifer got chatting to one of the ACU staff members who encouraged her to apply for an early offer program. To Jennifer’s relief she was accepted.
“It took a lot of pressure off me during my Year 12 exams, I could really focus on my studies knowing I already had a university offer," she said.
Two for one
Jennifer chose to do a double degree in business administration and commerce, a decision she says gave her exposure to many different fields of work, without adding too much to her workload.
“When I started, I wasn’t too sure what I wanted to do. With the flexibility of the double I could really get exposed to all the business units and pick two different majors.
“I studied for four years instead of three, but I completed units over summer and winter breaks, so I has semesters where I was only doing three units at a time. That meant I could fit in part-time work and other commitments.
“It was only one extra year of uni, but I got rewarded with two degrees,” she said.
Early on in her degree, Jennifer had the opportunity to take
an overseas study
tour. She didn’t hesitate.
“I joined students from the other ACU campuses to travel to Europe
and learn firsthand about business and trade relations in the region.
“We visited think tanks, embassies, financial institutions
and partner universities in London and Belgium. We also spent time at the ACU
Rome Campus. We spoke to a lot of thought leaders, international lecturers and
researchers on current topics including Brexit, the European Union and
international trade. This exposed us to various professional ideas and perspectives.”
Join (or start) a student society
During the tour, Jennifer and a group of other ACU students
started discussing the creation of a society for business students.
“We were in London and sitting around and someone said, ‘You
know every other faculty has their own society, wouldn’t it be good to get
together a group of us and just start something,’ so we did!”
It was the birth of the St Patrick’s Business Student
“The society runs events with guest speakers from all
industries. They talk a lot about what employers are looking for or how to
apply for graduate programs. There are also LinkedIn and CV writing workshops. The
society really helps prepare students for what happens after they graduate.”
As one of the founding members of the society, it also gave Jennifer
hands-on experience in event management, working in teams, delegating tasks and
getting things done to a deadline, skills she draws on heavily in her career.
Take a placement or two
Jennifer also made sure she sought work placement opportunities
as part of her studies. Her connections with ACU staff helped her organise her
“I actually did an internship at ACU as they needed
assistance with marketing. I really enjoyed it because I understood the culture
of the university and got to work on marketing targeted towards my peers and
upcoming students,” she said.
In her final year she took part in CISCO MentorMe, a program
designed to expose female undergraduate students to the opportunities available
“My mentor was great. He helped me meet people that were in
my field and each week I’d be given a task to do with CISCO marketing.
example, if they were holding an event, I’d present ideas on how to market it.
“At first it was a bit daunting, but it assisted with
developing my strategic thinking and I gained a lot of confidence working in
the professional setting.”
The end game
Jennifer’s first job after graduation is as the Sales and Marketing
Manager for Shield Corporate
It was a matter of right attitude at the right time, “Most
people they’d interviewed were only after a nine to five job and this role
wasn’t that. It was pretty much starting a whole department from scratch and I
think that scared a lot of people.”
“I’ve been able to adapt the skills I learnt through my studies,
my internship and the CISCO MentorMe program to my current role. Because of the
choices I made throughout my degree, I know I have opportunities that would not
normally be open to me as a new graduate.”
To graduate job-ready, like Jennifer, explore our business
and commerce degrees.