Work experience during your studies is essential for successful career progression after university. As well as your academic acheivements, employers will be looking at what you have done outside of the curriculum, whether through part-time work, voluntary work, placements or internships. It doesn't matter if this is not related to your subject of study - there are numerous skills you can learn which will be of benefit whichever line of work you do. These are known as transferable skills (such as communication, teamwork, problem solving, IT and many more!).
If I could talk to my unsure-self from a year ago, who wondered if a PPY was for me; I'd tell myself to stop hesitating and go for it, because it will all be SO worth it.
I am a third year student studying BSc Sports Science and Exercise Practise. I feel my PPY helped me learn how to organise and plan much better, which will be very important as I will be working on my dissertation in the final year. I also learned how important it is to start preparing for your career early on while you are still studying.
Understandably you need to focus on your studies as well as taking time off to relax/ have fun but spending just an hour or two looking into graduate schemes, working on your CV, looking into what the hiring process is for different companies an hour or two per week will prepare you for a hopefully smooth transition into a graduate role.
In terms of how my PPY prepared me for when I graduate, I feel like I have a better understanding of what the career world requires for me to make it in it. These are things that may not be covered in your degree.
You may have practical or technical knowledge through your degree in the field that you are looking to go and work in but are you able to speak professionally in order to convince employers to hire you in the first-place? Is your written communication up to scratch?
Are you able to work well in a team or do you perhaps know what qualities you need to have a leadership position if you’re an ambitious individual? In my personal experience, I learned about the above and much more.