I think if you had asked me at the beginning of my undergraduate degree whether I was going to consider doing a masters, I probably would have told you, ‘not a chance - I’ve had 21 years of education let’s not add on anymore’. But my three years of studying English here at the University of Plymouth has changed that for me. Earlier this year, I decided that I loved the study of literature too much to quit learning about it just yet, and went in search of a Masters programme. As much as I have loved studying in Plymouth, I become restless and want to explore somewhere new! I also felt that my swimming could benefit from a change of programme, as it did dramatically when I moved to Plymouth. Luckily, I found both the course and the swimming programme at Edinburgh University, and come September I will be pursuing my interest in cross-cultural literature on their Comparative Literature course. I COULD NOT BE MORE EXCITED!
A lot of people think that postgraduate study is just for those who want to delay the stressful job-seeking process another year or so, but a Masters is a fantastic opportunity to both pursue a subject you’re passionate about and boost your employability! As well as an extra qualification that might give you the competitive edge in the jobs market, particularly in high-skilled employment. It demonstrates an interest in your chosen area and a drive to further your knowledge and improve your skills. This is great if there is something you want to specialise in, but also even if it’s simply because you enjoy learning and studying. There’s no shame in admitting to enjoying the student life ;)
Undertaking a masters, be it a taught or research one, will also provide you with a wealth of contacts and connections. You’ll be working with professionals, as well as being given the chance to talk and listen to other academics who have proved their status in your field of study. When it comes to tackling the jobs market afterwards it will make things a heck of a lot easier. But even more importantly it’s an incredible and exciting opportunity to learn from these people and see where your subject can take you!
Finally, if you’re a bit like me, doing a masters is also just a chance to go somewhere new and explore a different part of the country or maybe even world! Meet new people, perhaps learn about your subject in a different light to what you’ve been used to and experience a different way of life. I know that Edinburgh is very different to Plymouth (I’m trying not to think about the temperature drop) and I can’t wait to immerse myself in everything that the city has to offer, my masters course included.