Close up of a doctor in a white lab coat with a pocket full of pens

Not all of us have life long dreams we’d like to fulfill, we don’t all want to be doctors, lawyers or engineers, and it’s not unusual for you to not have a specific career in mind. If you are stuck for something to do, think about your general likes and dislikes, such as whether you want to work in an office environment or outdoors, whether you want to work with people or animals, or whether you want to use your hands.

Knowing what you want to do with the rest of your life when you’re 16 is no mean feat and unless you have a particular career in mind, finding good work experience places can be tough. Here's where to start.

What about those around you?

Think about what your parents, relatives or friends parents do - do any of them work in an industry that interests you?

What are your favourite subjects and what are you best at?

If you have a clear favourite subject, you could look at something related to that subject, for example:

  • English - journalism and editing, working in a library, teaching, advertising and marketing, public relations, the media
  • Maths - banking, accountancy, engineering, pharmacy, teaching, computer programming
  • History - the Civil Service, working in a museum, social work, journalism, advertising and marketing, public relations, the law
  • Geography - working in agriculture, conservation, oil, or mining
  • Biology - pharmacy, nursing, hospital lab work
  • Chemistry - pharmacy, medicine, engineering
  • Physics - engineering, manufacturing, construction
  • Art - web/product/graphic design, architecture, advertising and marketing, animation, working in a gallery
  • Drama - teaching, public relations, events management
  • PE - psychology, fitness, teaching, physiotherapy
  • Technology & Design - engineering, web/graphic/product design, animation
  • Languages - teaching, marketing and public relations, translation

Follow your passions

Beyond the school subjects you excel in, you may want to think about your passions outside the classroom. What are you interested in? If you’re a music fan, maybe your perfect work experience placement would be in a music shop? If you’re an animal lover, then why not contact your local farm, zoo or stables for opportunities?

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