Grad Programs are an excellent way for graduates to get a foot in the door of their chosen industry. These programs allow them to grow and develop their skills so that they can continue to flourish in their chosen careers. Customer and Portfolio Graduate, Jake Crozier, understands the importance of such programs in introducing individuals to the working world.
Jake was originally studying Commerce majoring in Finance but soon realised that this wasn’t the right path for him. It was his eventual change to a Business Economics major that led him to his current role at Medibank.
“Medibank was one of the many companies that had a Grad Program on offer and after reading through the job description, what I would be doing in the role, what the company culture was like and how the program was structured, there was no hesitation to apply.”
With new jobs come new challenges and Jake’s experience with Medibank isn’t any different. Having previously worked in physical labour, learning to work in a corporate environment is something he has had to get used to.
“Adapting to a corporate environment would definitely be the biggest change. I was working in a factory in Brisbane, so to go from physical labour to working where I am now has been a huge change.”
Jake and some of the other grads volunteering with the Medibank Community Fund, making sandwiches for the Eat Up Org, supporting children who go to school without food.
In his short time at Medibank, he has learned invaluable lessons, which he will be able to use for the rest of his career. Although the changes he’s had to face in his role have been big challenges, they’ve also been very important in his growth and development.
“I have the chance to work with so many different types of people and to work collaboratively. I’m learning to think on my feet, to actually use my skills and knowledge, and to use who I am as a person to add value. It’s incredible the things you’re thrown into as a grad and the positive impact these experiences have personally.”
Jake with his team having a pancake breakfast on the level 6 balcony.
In his five months at Medibank, Jake has also been given the opportunity to mentor university students. The University of Melbourne holds a Management Consulting course in which students get together in a group and are then assigned to different companies. During this time, they are required to act as consultants for that company.
“It was such a great experience because the shoes that they were in were quite literally the shoes I was in six months ago. I could empathise with them and relate to them because it was so fresh to me. I loved having the chance to lead and mentor, but also see them develop and be faced with real outcomes.”
Jake says the one thing he has really noticed since coming on board with Medibank is how much the company really values its employees, including graduates.
“The company can see the value in us and they understand the long-term benefits of having graduates. They can see our potential and are really supportive of us as young professionals coming into the corporate world.”
Jake getting together with fellow grads Yuanshen and Ali having FriYAY drinks after work.
According to Jake, in order to stand out from everyone else, it’s important for graduates to use real-life examples in your role, whether it be through their university experiences or outside of work.
“It’s not about the mark on an essay or the degree that’s been undertaken, it’s about who you are, your experiences and what you think you will bring to your team and the company.”
One piece of advice that he has for future graduates looking to apply for grad programs is to stay persistent because just like with most things in life, there may be setbacks but that’s no reason to give up.
“During the whole process, you will get rejected and you will feel like you’re not going to get anywhere, but if you keep persisting, you will definitely find your way.”
To stay balanced and teach himself to switch off from work mode, Jake recently took up bouldering, which is a shorter version of rock climbing, with no ropes or harnesses but thick mats on the ground.
Jake giving bouldering a try, as a way to switch off from the everyday distractions.
“I heard about it, started watching some videos online and thought it looked like a fun activity so I went for it and I’m really enjoying it! It was quite hard at first and I’m still working on it and trying to improve, but I’m getting there.”
Now that’s persistence.