If you are going to go abroad, try and get your registration done before you leave. Lots of friends have been in countries for months without being able to work. I didn’t get mine finished before I went travelling it was a disaster with my poor Mum having to keep ringing me and sorting things out for me from home.
Also I would really recommend researching jobs before you leave. In Australia and New Zealand it tends to go in swings and roundabouts. When we arrived in NZ there weren’t many jobs and then 9 months later there were loads, so make sure you pick a place where there are lots advertised. Contacting recruiters before you go is great as they’ll give you an idea about the market. But I would also say don’t trust them fully as they always want to try and fill their rural positions.
Build networks. There are so many physio’s abroad that would be willing to help if they knew you were coming, so ask around if anyone knows anyone before you go. Having someone who knows the hospital system in the country that could tell you where to apply to will save so much time. They could also recommend you for jobs.
Peacock your CV. You need to have something to make yourself stand out like voluntary experience in India etc. It could also be non-physio related but get to thinking about what your unique selling point is.
I would recommend not to get too caught up by the idea of getting rotations done. I never actually did a job with structured rotations. I just kind of went from job to job and ended up getting experience in all the different areas. But really if you have no longing to ever work in resp, then you don’t need to do a rotation in it. Your undergrad training will be enough for the bits of it you need etc.
Lots of jobs aren’t on the panel. All voluntary hospitals and voluntary bodies (like Enable, Harold’s Cross etc) get to hire their own staff. So its worth sitting down and making a list of all of them and contacting them with your CV. Make sure you get the managers name and write to them directly and also change your cover letter for each one and put in about why you want to work for them specifically. You’ll be surprised how many generic letters and CV’s my manager gets in weekly, but when she gets one addressed to her, telling her why they want to work in this job specifically it makes a difference.
Also don’t forget private hospitals and nursing homes.
Add on’s are great. So doing Pilates courses etc can really help get that extra bit of side money in and help you get your foot in the door in some private practices.
Masters – If you want to stay in Ireland it could be the way to go to buy more time and make contacts. They are expensive though. It could be worth looking into whether there are any paid research ones around.
Keep in touch with old placement educators and tutors by sending the odd email. This will keep you in mind if anything comes up.
Panel – I hear they are doing a new panel. Given the last one went on for 6 years it may be worth investing time in this. UCD has a careers service where it should be free for a while after you finish college, they can do practice interviews with you. It will be competency based and will follow a really structured format so no reason why you cant do as well as someone who has work experience.
Think outside the physio box. You also have a science degree. Every job you have doesn’t have to be clinical. For example Dublin is a centre for technology and there are lots of health start-ups like Fitocracy which is an exercise based app. So doing something like that for a year or two could be fun and give you that something extra for your CV.
And lastly don't stress. You will get something eventually and if you want to be a physio all your life there is no rush in starting!