The journey through undergraduate courses does not necessarily follow one imagined direction. This is why a student of Industrial Design may develop interest in creative content development and take up jobs in public relations for a career. While the university expected that students, early in their undergraduate journey, learn new skills and review their work progress, employers, on the other hand, expect students to be equipped with necessary skills and attitude to be ready to enter a career while they experiment more with corporate organizations evident in their students’ portfolios.
Students’ portfolios are not expected to be fully polished as per work experience should be. What an employer is interested in at the level of graduation is potential and not work experiences. Having a student’s portfolio will help to showcase the journey that an applicant has been on from having initial ideas to creating something. Students’ portfolios should make sense in the context of a journey that one has undertaken so far.
Because the university is designed to help students develop specific skills towards an area of specialization, it will not give a full understanding of that skill because the potential to learn new skills should be inborn in the students’ mind. It’s therefore important for students to look around and understand the work that is socially relevant to their discipline early in their academics. For example, Students looking to further career in areas like Arts, Creative Content Development, Graphics Designs, Website Development, Software Engineering, Architecture, Digital and Social Media Analyst etc. should be able to build a portfolio for employers and potential partners to see in terms of presentation – a process of revealing oneself as a practitioner.
Portfolios are important documents in one’s life in the university – documents, which has helped people reach a desired outcome. One of the importance of including the range of works that you have done is to show that you are open-minded and that your practice is evolving. It’s important for every student to start building their portfolios early in their undergraduate journey, even if they are not happy about their achievements in school.
A simple student’s portfolio should include everything of their involvement from the start of the academic journey – the thought process such as honours, awards, academic accomplishments, completed tasks, artworks, lab reports, volunteer activities and physical projects.
In light of the above, Skyline University Nigeria is playing a vital role in helping students identify criteria for selecting and creating portfolios through the university’s entrepreneurship lab. The entrepreneurship lab is comprised multiple students’ clubs designed to train students to demonstrate their skills and think about how their selected area of specialization might support—or detract from—the statement they want to make with their portfolio. They are also encouraged to learn how to combine achievements and commentary in their portfolio to craft an effective argument or statement about their learning and to develop in them the ability to describe specific features of their areas of specialization.