Follow @MulryanD I've been travelling a bit recently and also the sun has decided to make an appearance here in Granada so I have been quite busy. It has been in the mid 20 degrees here all week and hit 35 today.....which has just made the thought of going back to rainy Ireland all the more depressing!
Being in lectures with the people who study straight commerce (without the language and year abroad), me and my friends have noticed a certain mindset that infests itself within the undergraduates. It's the norm these days to go through college, pulling out a 2.1 degree with a lot of effort in your final year and applying to every accounting firm willing to take a look at your C.V.
Many of these get what they want, or what the think they want. An internship and fully funded masters degree from any of the top 4 accounting firms is the holy grail of business students in Ireland. Deloitte, PWC, KPMG and Ernst and Young. When told one has been recruited by one 'The Big 4', the recruit is met with immediate respect and congratulations. However, when you ask are they actually looking forward to tying down their next 4 years working long hours for average pay in a ridiculously expensive city?....... I've yet to meet someone who says they are.
I'd be a hypocrite if I was to say I never wanted to follow this path, and I fully respect anyone who has worked to get these positions, but it was only leaving Ireland that made me realise that I could never do it. A few of my friends have job offers from Deloitte and PWC, and even though they are great jobs with huge firms, they know they most likely won't enjoy it. On the other side of things I have met people who are currently halfway through their internship and practically begged me not to apply for them!
I know that if I want a job in business it will be in marketing or in somewhere that will creatively and mentally challenge me, ever since my first accounting module in college I knew I never wanted to be in that sector. Seeing everyone in the sun here lately has made me realise that there are other ways to live life, the locals here just literally do what they want, they don't care about what is expected of them or what others are doing. Without exaggeration, I have been sunbathing and hanging out with friends on my roof terrace everyday this week. It doesn't matter how much money or what company you work for in Ireland or England you just cannot do that there!
I spend a lot of time with English teachers here, and from what I have heard they make only slightly less then a trainee accountant at KPMG makes, however when you take in the facts that rent is less than half the price here and the weather is infinitely better, the choice seems easy does it not?
People will argue, ''but 3 years working at a worldwide firm looks better on a C.V than travelling around Spain and Europe for a few years does right?'' So what? Having a long list of achievements written on paper isn't going to make you happy or feel fulfilled, finding something you actually want to do will.
I might still find myself in a graduate scheme after my degree if the right opportunity comes along, but what I have learnt recently is that there is more ways to do things than what everyone else around you is doing....