Monday, 17 July 2017

4 common Linkedin mistakes


Hi guys,

I decided to do something a little different today. Summer is officially in full swing and no one including myself wants to worry about school lunches, studying or anything of that sort. Instead I will be focusing the next month or so on things you can do over the summer to help you for starting college.

For those of you who may not be familiar with the site it is the worlds largest professional network. Helping to connect companies and professionals from all over the world. I myself hadn't heard of the site till my first year in college. Basically it is a way to connect with businesses and employers, and highlight yourself in a professional way. While your in college it can help connect you to businesses and let you research more about companies or can even help you when applying for jobs. I always link my Linkedin on my CV it shows you are professional and prepared as well as giving an employer a short list of your skills.

It can take a while to get used to, and starting a profile seems a lot more work than it actually is. Below are a list of the top four common mistakes people make at the start.




1. Adding irrelevant people

Quality is always better than quantity ! Grow your friends by adding people you work with, are in college with or if you know people in companies you would be interested in working for. Linkedin will then start sending you people you may know based on what information you have given on your profile, your friends and the companies you follow. It is also important that you follow potential employers on Linkedin especially if you link your profile on your CV because then employers will see you have previously shown an interest in the company.



2. Unprofessional photo

Your photo is the first thing people will see when they view your profile so it needs to be professional. If you link your profile to your CV its more than likely the first time an employer will be able to put a face to the name so make it count. Try stay away from group photos, dark lighting, and graduation pictures, stick to a clean white background and from the shoulders up.



3. Leaving blanks

I know it may seem like a huge time consuming task when your first start. There are so many boxes to fill in, find connections and follow groups but there is a reason to fill in each one. The more information you give the easier it is for Linkedin to match you with jobs, organizations and people you may know. It really does make your profile more appealing and professional as well.

Employers look at your Linkedin to get the most information about you in the quickest way possible. The headings on Linkedin are specifically chosen for this reason, your education, skills, and work experience. Make sure to also include the skills which make you applicable for the job somewhere on your profile. You can do this by adding a summary about yourself eg. a people person/ good communicator or in work experience/ education eg. trained in mass spectrometry.


                                                               4. Reviews

Having reviews from people help support what you've just said you can do above. They could be colleagues, lecturers or other professionals. You don't need a million reviews from your friends saying how nice of a person you are stick strictly to the skills and attributes.

Friday, 30 June 2017

Gap year

Hi guys ... feel like I've taken a bit of a gap year when it came to the blog lately.

It's leaving cert time for thousands of students in Ireland and with that comes a lot of pressure to know what you want to do with your life. The thing is most students have next to no clue what they want to do when they leave college and that's fine.

Sometimes taking a year off can be the best thing for you. When I say take a year off I don't me sitting around doing nothing for a year that won't prepare you for anything. I mean asking yourself what could I do this year that would prepare for college. What is stopping you right now ?

Maybe your not sure what you want to study at all, maybe your stuck between two choices and can't decide which one to take, are you under eighteen and worried your not ready for such a big change. Many students are under eighteen when they start college and for most of them it makes no difference but for some people it's just too soon. So many of my friends started college young and wish they had taken the extra year out. As well as not being emotionally ready in some cases, you also won't get to experience a lot of the night life and extra curricular activities that your over eighteen friends will.

When I finished school I got my place in college but I knew I wasn't ready to jump straight into a four year degree that I really wasn't even sure I wanted. I made the conscientious decision to take the year out. I didn't sit at home for a year I enrolled in a general science course for a year it helped me get a better understanding in science. If the reason your not ready for college is because your unsure of your course choice than I strongly suggest looking into 1 year courses.

Maybe you feel college isn't for you at all or you need time to mature and experience life. Take the year out and work or travel it could be just what you need to clear your head and find out what you truly love. At the end of the day there is nothing worse than being two or three years into a degree and thousands of euro wasted when you realise your not happy. Do what it is you love and don't be sorry for doing it.

Saturday, 4 February 2017

Why you should choose science

Hey guys,

Today's post is about SCIENCE so get excited !!



As a student ambassador and science student I get asked a lot about why I chose science. So why exactly should you chose science as your future career choice. Well there is more than one reason. I mean the only one that should really matter is that you like science and could honestly see yourself studying this for a long time. As I continue in my degree, my ideal job is constantly changing. Medicinal chemistry, environmental health, inks and dyes and it's because the possibilities are endless. If you ever wanted a degree with endless opportunities science is just that.

Interesting side story I didn't ever consider being a scientist until my last year in school. Since I was little I wanted to study law. I never once questioned doing anything else. When I was in Sixth year I went to the higher options show in the RDS. I went into a law talk and fell asleep within the first 20 minutes. I quickly realised that studying law for four plus years was not realistic for me. So I left the talk and went to find a friend who was in a science talk. Well the women speaking showed in no uncertain terms how many jobs the were in science that year and the starting salary for scientists in Ireland. I thought about it, I always loved science, money in science was good and I wanted a job that would keep me interested. Science ticked all these boxes for me so I shifted all my attention into finding an area of science that I would love. For me that  choice was chemistry. I guess that was less of a side story and more like half a blog post !



There is something very satisfying about learning how things work. This is a core principle that almost every scientist has. Science really is everywhere whether it's learning how a microwave works or how chocolate is made, yes chocolate making is a science in itself ( Its a branch of chemistry). When most people think of science they see this

@ can stock photo credit

I'd like to point out we are not all nutty professor stereo types. For the most part we do indeed work in a lab but a recent campaign by the royal society of chemistry is pushing the boundaries of what society expects of a scientist. Such as this marine chemist.



Science being everywhere and being involved in all natural occurrences means that scientists get to do some pretty amazing work in every corner of the world. Ill put the link of RSC down below.

Not only are there many exciting jobs for scientist but there are many jobs period. Ever heard the saying there is no such thing as an unemployed mathematician, that's because a mathematician can work in finance, science, technology the possibilities are endless. Science and finance are two of the only sectors that continue to higher more people even in a recession. Ireland is the largest exporter of pharmaceuticals in Europe. The pay for a scientist is pretty good as well.

The real reason you should choose science is because you love it. All scientist share one of two common goals. One to help people or two, to leave your mark on history. Bottom line is would you mind getting up everyday and going to class to listen to a lecturer talk about science for four years. Don't get me wrong there are days I would rather stay in bed for an extra hour or some classes that I don't relish going to everyday but overall I don't mind going to college everyday because I truly enjoy learning about science and that's all that really matters when choosing a degree.


For those of you interested in learning more about the royal society of chemistry this is the link.




Credit for the second photo above also goes to the royal society of chemistry.

http://www.rsc.org/learn-chemistry/resource/res00001654/not-all-chemists-wear-white-coats?cmpid=CMP00004939




Wednesday, 25 January 2017

How to study effectively

Hi guys,

I know it's been a while since I last posted but second year med chem exams can be stressful. For most of us a new year means a new semester. This brings with it new classes and an opportunity to study the right way. 

When I say 'The right way' I mean taken what you wish from my list of tips and making them work for you. I done a previous study smarter not harder post a few months ago but I've picked up some other tips since then that I thought I would share with you guys. 

So let's get started.....





Numero uno, Letting go. 

Don't spend time dwelling on what you could have done last semester. If your like me you won't get your exam result's for a while. There is absolutely no benefit to stressing about your results now, it won't change them. Instead take note of what didn't work last time and build on that. 






Revise material sooner

One thing that didn't work for me was scheduling all my study for two specific days. It is proven that revising material straight after you've had a class is better for you. Although you may have the notes in front of you the point of going to class is for the extra nuggets of wisdom your lecturer will slip into the lecture. For instance highlighting what info in the notes is not going to be on the exam. I have started studying each lecture notes the same day as the lecture. Of course this means some days will have more studying than others.







Plan ahead

Plan for the free time you have. On a monday I have labs, no classes therefore no lecture notes to study. Instead I start my lab reports that day. Again the information is still fresh in  your mind. Last semester I would start reports whenever I had free time that could be days after by which point I would need to look at my manual to try and remember what the point of the experiment was. Plan one day maybe at the weekend that you have completely free, this day can be used for any missed revision and finishing up reports.





Do the self work

Unlike school everything you need to know will not be handed to you. 50% of what you need to learn is self teaching. You can get this extra info from books, websites or my favorite YOUTUBE !! So obviously don't use Youtube as a source in a report but to help you really grasp the hard topics it is a very goof source of information. For chemistry student's I recommend 'Ben's chem videos'. He thought me a whole module in one night. 

Most lecturers provide a recommended reading list on the first day. This is something I did not use last semester and really regretted. This semester I made sure to get the name of at least one recommended book for each module.





I hope these tips help to make semester too a little bit easier.