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First job fails to satisfy grad

Updated: 2014-09-30 07:42
(China Daily)

Ella Shen finished her postgraduate study as an English language and literature major at a top Chinese university in South China in 2012.

Upon her graduation, she was admitted to a world's leading logistics company as a management trainee, although she recognizes that the job has little to do with what she had been studying at school for seven years.

Before the interview, Shen knew nothing about the company other than what she found on its website.

Luckily, a friend working in the industry briefed her about the company and the industry in general - which was just enough to help her pass the interview.

The competition was intense. Only 10 students in South China were hired as management trainees in 2012. But Shen did not think too much about her future career plans. The only thing on her mind was "doing something different from what I have done".

That ambition was not truly fulfilled. Shen only stayed with the company for a year, as she wasn't getting the training she had expected. Nor did her salary measure up to what her peers were getting.

"I was paid about 5,000 yuan a month. If I had chosen a teaching position, I could have doubled my income," the 27-year-old Shen said.

Monthly rent cost 1,000 yuan. But she managed to make ends meet.

Though life was not that bad, her work did not turn out for the best.

"I felt kind of marginalized. Because I was an MT, other employees including my supervisor expected me to do more work without training. I worked overtime almost every day but didn't learn as much as I expected," she said.

Shen was 26 back then. The program was designed to last for three years. When she finished at age 28 or 29, she would be promoted to supervisor at best.

"I didn't think that position was worth three years of effort. Also, I tried to dream about my future life. I didn't think working in logistics would help me reach my goals. My parents also wanted me to quit because they were worried about my health," she said.

So she did.

Afterward, she found an opportunity to be a teacher in a training organization. Although the experience as a management trainee was not particularly successful, Shen was still content that it was her first step into the real career world.

"I was really an unqualified time-manager and didn't know how to say no to others. I learned such skills slowly as a management trainee. At least when my current students learn that I worked as an MT before, they admire me more," she laughed.

- Shi Jing


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