When you’re at university, what are the two main things you want? In my case, it was relevant work experience and money. Can you relate? In this blog post I’m going to talk through how freelancing during my time at university not only stopped me from having to work 10pm til 3am behind a bar, but it also put me on the path to where I am now – running my own freelance PR service.
In my first year of university, I got the role of Editor of the PR Blog which kick-started Live Love Laugh PR (so thank you, Solent PR Blog – I owe you a lot!). The job provided me with a bit of extra money every month but, most importantly, it highlighted to me my #lifegoals, if you will; my dream career is to work from my pyjamas whilst doing something I enjoy. Whilst I’ve had to put the dream of doing that full time to one side whilst I build up a solid clientele and my finances, it’s still the number one priority on my ‘Livi’s Life Goals’ list.
My Blog Editor job led me to many opportunities by chance. I started off doing one workshop on WordPress training and, by word of mouth, this led to me leading presentations, workshops and lectures around my university, and others, on WordPress/social media/building a brand and more. Before then, I’d never thought of ‘teaching’ as being something I wanted to do, other than when I bossed my younger sister around when we were younger under the pretence that we were ‘playing schools’. But I loved it; I loved designing the presentations, researching content, thinking about what people would be interested in learning about and I loved talking and delivering to a group of people. Being paid for it was also a bonus!
Two of my workshops led to me being asked to design and create WordPress sites – my first real life clients. And, again by word of mouth, I met a new client who just wanted someone to look at a problem with his website, which, after a few chats, turned into me creating a PR & Marketing strategy for his business.
Seeing it all written down like this is crazy. I do believe I fell into freelancing by accident, but I’m so glad I did as if I’d spent my university life getting money from a bar job (or if I stayed in the fateful cleaning job I had for the entirety of 4 shifts at an old people’s home) I wouldn’t be where I am now – building my freelance career so I can start working from my pyjamas doing something I love, full time.
Ultimately, you’re getting paid whilst getting experience. A win win situation for students.
Did you do freelance work at uni? How do you think it helped you? Let us know!