It’s late and I’m obnoxiously tired from being outside all day/ building a chicken coop/being a prospective farm girl. Being such, I don’t know if I can put my full heart into this which I’m pretty sure is a cardinal sin of blogging. Seriously though, let’s talk job hunting.
I have managed to achieve three degrees within six years, two bachelor’s and a master’s, and am now expected attain a job that will allow me to support myself while also paying off the excessive amount of school loan debt that has been accumulated. This means that I must ‘sell’ my abilities and experience to an agency that probably has hundreds of applications coming into Human Resources and possibly uses a program to sort out certain ‘key words.’ This is often why it’s frowned upon to put ‘Magna Cum Laude’ or ‘Cum Laude’ on a resume, even though it is a distinction of honors received while in college. However, as it works in the social work profession, women are the majority of employees which means that I am competing with mostly women, and a decent handful of men, for the very few positions that are out there. I also went straight from undergraduate to graduate school, which means that I have no paid experience. All of my experience is based off of internship and practicum experiences which, while thoroughly beneficial, do not mean a huge amount since I was not paid and had a supervisor co-signing all my notes.
It shouldn’t be THAT difficult to find a job though, right? I thought the same as I have friends and colleagues that were able to secure positions before graduation. Being in a situation of not knowing where I may be living next definitely did not help me, but I have been applying to different agencies since late March . . . maybe even earlier. Part of my own issue is that I don’t have a full concept of the position that I would like, especially since the population I enjoy working with are also some of the most dangerous. Another issue is that I have a ‘big idea’ that cannot come to fruition without lots of planning and capital to make it happen. I’m at a crossroads in a way. The typical 9 to 5 job has little to no appeal to me as an individual. The positions that I have interviewed for have involved mobile therapy and wraparound services that help clients within their home, school, and community. It can be described as anything but a 9 to 5. There is a huge safety issue involved with this kind of work though and the part of being in someone’s home when working with a client. Those two do not rest well with me as I’m a women and slightly vertically challenged. My dream job would be in either a hospital or farm setting, both difficult to conceive as a job either due to lack of availability or lack of programming. I’m the one social worker that would rather do manual labor outside than sit at a desk all day.
So, why the big gripe session? I honestly needed to vent because, after days upon days of job hunting, I’m ready to call it quits and look into PhD programs. Although, in the long run, that wouldn’t help me either.
Part of me needs to quit thinking that I should have had a job yesterday because it really is okay to decline job offers if the salary isn’t enough or the job isn’t the right one for you. Being in a profession such as social work, it’s rare to stay at a job for your entire career but it would be nice to find an initial job that I won’t dread going to every day. Part of it really is me and needing to take a day just to figure out where I want to end up, rather than throwing everything into a hat and reaching blindly for something that may or may not be the key to my happiness. Part of it is being in a profession where my job is based on a license which is regulated separately by each state. My qualifications may not be similar or transferrable to some states which limit where I can look for open positions.
Part of me would like to be a farm girl for the rest of my life. That works, right?
I need to spend a night sitting by a fire and giving myself time to think without stress getting in the way. I’m far too stressed out about my future to think clearly about anything at this moment. Speaking of campfires, here was tonight’s at a friend’s house:
Stay true, folks.