Despite this, most young people are still indecisive about their future. In order to help introduce us to careers we may not have heard much about and assist us in making these decisions, Heartlands started calling in different people with different, interesting careers during Year 10 lunch time. They would be sitting in the library and Year 10s are free to walk in at any time and ask questions etc.
The first of these career talks was given by Craig Burnet, an international journalist. Mr Burnet shared with us his experience of the world of journalism. He said that he did a degree in English, which led on from him doing History, English and Philosophy for A-Levels. At first, he was sure about his career path of becoming an Author however during work experience in university with a newspaper, he changed his mind. He said ‘people are fascinating’ and thus finds it more interesting to interact with people and find interesting news stories as opposed to sitting in a room alone writing the next bestseller.
He went on to mention that journalism was a job which might give you opportunities unlike any others. For example, during the first couple of weeks of Mr Burnet working with a South London newspaper, he got into an arm wrestle with a champion and worked with a murder mystery. Despite all this, Mr Burnet warned that it can be a very competitive path to follow. For his job with a South London newspaper, he was one of 150 applicants. He went on to work there for another four years.
Before all this, Craig Burnet was a general news reporter who ended up specialising in Health and Education. He now works for the Red Cross, writing reviews about how donators’ money is being used, as well as what the Red Cross do. To any aspiring journalists, he said one of the main skills is ‘being able to gather and tell a story in a simple, concise way.’
This talk was followed by another, by Catriona Stathan on Wednesday 20th November. Ms Stathan is a Humanitarian and used to work for Merlin. With the aid company Merlin, she worked in London for six months followed by six months in the DRC (Congo).
In university, she took a triple honours degree; a mixture of French, Spanish and Russian, a language she had never taken up before. She had done French and Spanish for GCSE’s and A-levels. She was in university for four years, for which one year was spent travelling to the countries related to the languages she was studying. She spent 6 months in Paris, a summer in Cuba and 3 months in St Petersburg in Russia. After emerging from university, she found out about a program to go to Japan to teach English. Not able to stay away from the opportunity to learn another language, she went there and stayed for two years. She loved it and learnt so much, simultaneously picking up Japanese.