The Higher National Diploma (HDN and Brevet de Technicien Supérieur or BTS in French) is a 2-year diploma that you can also obtain in a public institution, such as a high school, or in a business school such as IPAG. Students appreciate the level of professionalism and the short length of the programme, the HND allows also many students to continue their studies to obtain a higher degree. So, what to do once you obtained your diploma? Carry on with your studies? Enter the job market or go abroad? Check out some useful tips…
Useful questions to ask yourself before making your choice
Once you have graduated from the equivalent of a HND in France, several options are available: continue your studies, specialise yourself in a field, change your professional project or integrate the professional world by signing a fixed-term or permanent contract. Don’t wait to be officially graduated to start asking yourself this question. From the beginning of your second year, it's important to think about what's next.
Can you apply for a position right after your BTS? After two BTS years, you can already showcase your professional experience gained during your training to recruiters, whether through your apprenticeship or your internships. If you feel that you can claim for an interesting job as soon as you graduate, go for it!
Do you need a higher degree? If you feel that a line on your resume is missing for a position demanding higher responsibility in your early years on the job market, choose to pursue further your studies. The HND gives you access to many opportunities in this area (bachelors, Grande École Programme, etc.)
And why not specialise or give an international dimension to your profile? If you want to enrich your CV and acquire new skills in a field slightly different from the one you learned during your two HND years, you can opt to pursue in a specialised bachelor. If you are considering an international career, know that some bachelors (including the BBA) prepare you for it.
You are in your last year of your HND and you want to change studies? Don’t panic ! You can continue your higher studies without losing a year in a specialisation more in line with your desires and your projects by integrating a bachelor that will open other professional horizons.
Integrate the business world after a HND
The HND is a curriculum in which most students commit themselves to integrate the working life quickly. Indeed, this diploma has an excellent employment rate that has made its reputation since several years: the HND is a real passport to employment.
The HND programme allows you to accumulate the necessary experience to be fully operational after your two years of study. At IPAG, internships are mandatory each year for all HND students. This experience on the field is a major asset at the beginning of your career. The educational content of the HND programme is updated every year to meet the needs of companies.
In short, you would have understood that the HND allows you to quickly integrate the job market, and to work in many positions in many sectors depending on the specialisation you would have chosen. However, some positions may only be available to you with a 3-year or 5-year degree.
Study opportunities after a BTS
If you have a good curriculum and if you are motivated, you can continue your course to obtain a 3-year degree or higher. There are many available possibilities.
Making a 3-year degree at the university
Licences are 3-year programmes offered by all French universities. After a HND, you can integrate a licence directly into L3 degree level and why not continue your studies with a master.
Making a Bachelor in a Business School
The bachelor's degree is a 3-year or 4-year degree level taught by most business schools nowadays. The course in French, or in English if it is a BBA (Bachelor in Business Administration), generalist or specialised, is increasingly appreciated by recruiters and students since a few years.
IPAG Business School offers a large portfolio of specialisations in its Bachelor courses:
Integrate a Grande École Programme
If you did not necessarily imagine doing long studies when decided to start a HND, maybe the desire to continue your studies will finally lead you to consider joining a Grande École Programme Master degree (bac+5) such as the one offered by IPAG. With parallel admissions, you can fully integrate the 3rd year of the Grande École Programme. For that, you will have to prepare yourself with great seriousness because joining the programme requires you to be able to introduce yourself and succeed in passing the entry of AMBITIONS + exam. Job opportunities after this degree are obviously different from those of the HND, the responsibility level and the wage at the end of the course are higher. You can also get into a bachelor before integrating the fourth year IPAG Grande École Programme via the AMBITIONS + exam.
Going abroad after the HND
Whether you want to have a more international profile, to discover another culture, to master another language or for another reason, you can totally consider going to study abroad after obtaining your HND.
Taking advantage of a gap year to find a job in a foreign country can be an important experience to display on your resume, a springboard for the future but also a way to consolidate or reorient your career. At IPAG Business School, Bachelor students have the opportunity to take a gap year during their course.
In another respects, the french civic service is also an option available to you after your HND. If you are between 16 and 25 years old and want to travel, you can volunteer for a mission in an association or non-profit organisation abroad.
At last, you can also make internship abroad thanks to the VIE or Volontariat International en Entreprise in French), it allows young people from 18 to 28 years to commit for a period ranging from 6 to 24 months in technical or commercial fields.
All HND at IPAG Business School: