Monday, December 14, 2009

Mea Culpa

I've been considering my future employment opportunities lately. Right now the economy sucks and the job market is extremely tight. It makes me wonder if luck and determination with a certificate in Web Design will be enough to land me even an entry level job. My biggest concern is lack of practical experience in my newly chosen field. There is nothing to put on a resume that states I would be great at doing that type of job. Next semester we will begin building our portfolios. That will help to some degree. Also, the school offers a huge discount on software that financial aid will cover. I plan on availing myself to that so I can garner more practical experience with the software than just the time in the classroom. I've also been checking out job requirements for posted positions so I have a better idea of what companies are looking for and therefore what I need to focus on. Another idea I had is to even sign up for a few more classes in summer in an effort to build knowledge and maybe sneak in another certificate. I seriously doubt that as soon as I'm handed my paper, a job offer will be forth coming, so why not continue on while job searching? I'd love to have everything fall into place quickly, but that rarely happens to me. Plus there are still many things to be concerned with and dealt with next year.

I need some sort of income, but yet still have to find the time to help my parents ready their house for market, build a shop for my father, move a greenhouse, and start construction on my place, all the while job hunting, taking more classes and hopefully, living some sort of life. It is really a catch 22. Something has to give, I just am not sure what. My parents can't help me out forever, nor can they spend big bucks to get everything in order by paying someone else big bucks to do it. I'm cheap labor. On the other hand, I need a job, but require real computer skills to land it. If I managed to find any job at all, it limits the time to do everything else. Everything impinges on something else. It's a convoluted mess. I'm stuck in the middle of it. Damned if I do, damned if I don't. I know it will work itself out. Everything will fall into place in it's own time. I just wish I could see it coming a bit more clearly.


Larry Ohio said...

Does the university have an externship program? Or perhaps you could do a little work for the university itself. Even volunteer work is good because it will pad your resume.

Lemuel said...

I think that being able to state in a cover letter or in an interview that you are continuing to broaden your experience and knowledge by taking addition classes in pertinent areas can be a great selling point for yourself to a prospective employer.
You might also want to see if you could land some kind of internship with a company - even if it pays little or nothing right now - to add experience to your resume. Perhaps your school's career development center would have some leads for such internships. There is nothing wrong with contacting companies cold to ask if they have such. Another experience building option for you might be to contact non-profits in your area and volunteer your services (part-time) to help build or maintain their websites. Such organizations as pet shelters, hospice services, gay social groups, poverty centers might be grateful for the help and you would have something to point to in an interview as an example of your work. It might be something that you could do from home in down time in between helping your folks. Good luck and best wishes, always!

TomS said...

Larry's advice is excellent (above). Sounds like you have limited flexibility to relocate?

Often, those currently employed in positions in your desired industry are available for informational interviews. I have conducted several of these and was glad to do so.

Business Associations in your area often have opportunities to network.

You are such a great guy (from what I have gleaned from your pages) and I wish you the best, with the job search and in navigating your other responsibilities. I'm sure you would receive a lot of great character references from your followers here!


Russ Manley said...

The comments above are good advice, Dave. Education is just the minimum to get you in the door; experience is what lands you the job in most cases.

You have a lot going on. Try taking one hour and get quiet and still with yourself, and list, without censoring, all the things you have to do in the foreseeable future, and all the things you want to do.

Then go back and carefully rank them in order of importance. That will give you a priority list that might help you find you way through this uncertain time. Best of luck to ya bud; you have a lot going for you.

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