Someone somewhere was trying to say something last Thursday. I tend to wake up in the week days to the wonderfully illuminating BBC Radio 4 Today programme at 6am* (the first 30 minutes gives you your daily dose of everything you need to know about current affairs, business and sport – in that order with some weather and a newspaper review thrown in for good measure). I miss Ed Stourton but I feel at ease with Evan Davis (Dragon’s Den), there’s something quite matronly about Sarah Montague and Garry Richardson (Sports) might be no Christian O’Connell but especially given the hours he works (and the fact that he’s been doing it since 1981) he can crack impromptu gags with the best of them.
Sandwiched between details of David Cameron’s David Letterman interview (I would never send my son to Eton and there’s no way he sounds like James Bond) and news that the FTSE closed lower on Spanish economic woes (really?!) was the announcement of a new website, Unistats, that seems to help young people (including my cousin, Charles, 18 and currently working down the local boozer) work out how much they can earn from different courses at different universities (interesting for sure but taking this as gospel might be like believing that Nick Clegg wasn’t going to raise tuition fees). Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to search for the course most likely to introduce me to a life of bling and Bollinger but here are the outcomes for 3 options:
- 1) Politics (MA Hons) at Edinburgh University (my degree): 71% Satisfaction, Average Salary 6 months after graduation: £18,000 (though last weekend’s Sunday Times 2012 University Guide dropped it from 27th to 39th on poor teaching!)
- 2) PPE at Oxford (David Cameron’s degree): 93% Satisfaction, Average Salary 6 months after graduation: £25,000 (same as Computer Sciences at Bristol University which our developer studied but apparently he is 3% more satisfied)
- 3) BA in Global Cinema at Sterling University: 81% Satisfaction, Average Salary 6 months after graduation: £15,000
As I overtook yet another bus on my way to work (how is it that since the Olympics, the traffic lights seem to have gone on strike – someone privatise them – and even if i do end up furiously mopping my brow on arrival, it still seems to be possible to get to work on a bike twice as quick as on a double decker), I then passed a new army recruitment advert with an array of different soldiers on it looking like they were pursuing an array of unsoldierly careers. The advert said: “What do you want to be?”. Anything but a soldier these days I thought, given that reports indicate that 8,000 (including many serving in Afghanistan) are to lose their jobs in January with the army shrinking by about 20% come 2020.
I discussed this further this morning with Tray and Bella, 2 of WEXO’s directors who also run Careers Mentoring company, Tinker Tailor. Bella’s father was a General in the Marines and as a child I always wanted to be a soldier. Having spent a bit of time watching reruns of Spooks recently, and in the hope that I might get an invite to the new Bond premiere this month, I think in my next job I might become a Spy. In my experience, ruthless research, undercover networking and the occasional one liner often get you all sorts of offers. And I reckon I can do a pretty good Sean Connery impression too.
Robin Kennedy, WEXO Co-founder & CEO
* NB – if you’ve had a big night you can catch it later on BBC iPlayer or even better download the TuneIn Radio Pro app on your IPhone and record it (please don’t tell me you’ve still got a Blackberry, they’re for riots and the company that makes then is slowly following Nokia to the dogs.)