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Post Undergrad Sob Story, any advice?

post #1 of 93
Thread Starter 

I am having trouble getting a first job and I hope somebody here has some sage advice. This August I graduated with a B.A. in political science. During my freshman year in college I decided I was going to take charge of my own life and get my education paid for by joining the National Guard. The unit I enlisted into turned out to be 2 years out from a deployment so training ramped up which meant extended training during the year and over the summer. While it was great that my schooling was paid for and I got a monthly GI Bill check, I was not able to get any internships because of the training frequency over the summer. Between my junior and senior year I was deployed. I came home and finished my last two conventional semesters with an internship lined up for the summer along with a few online classes to complete my degree. Through no fault of my own the internship was cancelled and it was too late to apply for anything else.

 

So now I am at home with a degree in a field for which there are no jobs, no internships, and a deployment in which I served in a quasi leadership role that was technically above my pay grade. I would really like to get into academic publishing in New York but have only had one interview with no offer.

 

I have no idea what I am even qualified to do. Any advice for a lost veteran with a worthless degree?

post #2 of 93
couple points:

- being a veteran is a huge plus, especially when it comes to getting any sort of government job. use this.

- you should probably not try to get into publishing, I have several friends whose dream was this, and they are all in their late 20s, living in new york on their parent's dime, and working for publishing houses as unpaid interns or 'social media experts' who make $8 an hour to update a twitter feed.

- by academic publishing do you mean working for a textbook publisher, or working for an academic press that's associated with a university? i would imagine to get a job with the latter you'd need to have better academic credentials.

- what work experience do you have?

- does your school have a good alumni network? are you living in an area close to where you went to school?
post #3 of 93
Thread Starter 

For government hiring being a veteran is only worth 5 points. Hardly a big advantage or an advantage at all.

 

I mean academic publishing with a company like Macmillan, McGraw-Hill education etc. Monographs and textbooks I guess.

 

I have no work experience besides the deployment. I was a truck commander for most of the time with a part-time assignment as a supply clerk. As I explained in the OP I could never get an internship because of the ridiculous training schedule we had over the summers.

 

I do not live close to where I went to school.

post #4 of 93
beyond the application grading system, it's a plus because lots of people find it impressive and like hiring veterans. have you looked into any post-graduate certificate programs related to publishing? I know several exist. do you have any GI Bill benefits left?
post #5 of 93
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Teger View Post

beyond the application grading system, it's a plus because lots of people find it impressive and like hiring veterans. have you looked into any post-graduate certificate programs related to publishing? I know several exist. do you have any GI Bill benefits left?

 

I think I have 12 months of GI Bill left and I have not heard of any certificate programs. Like I said, I'm pretty well lost here!

post #6 of 93
think about what you do have - you were responsible for a bunch of trucks, right? you have 12 months of GI bill. ok, how about looking into some type of course on logistics or shipping, and trying to get a job with a forwarding company, or a trucking company as a dispatcher?

try to use what you have. if you are good, and you know logistics, you can shift that into a lot of stuff.

honestly, if my son wanted to go into publishing, I'd try to talk him out of it. it seems like an industry that will change so much in the coming decades that it makes no sense t take that risk.
post #7 of 93
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by globetrotter View Post

think about what you do have - you were responsible for a bunch of trucks, right? you have 12 months of GI bill. ok, how about looking into some type of course on logistics or shipping, and trying to get a job with a forwarding company, or a trucking company as a dispatcher?
try to use what you have. if you are good, and you know logistics, you can shift that into a lot of stuff.
honestly, if my son wanted to go into publishing, I'd try to talk him out of it. it seems like an industry that will change so much in the coming decades that it makes no sense t take that risk.

 

I was in charge of A truck and the 3-4 personnel that were with me for whatever given day. I have no interest in pursuing something related to that though. As far as publishing goes, from the interview I had the guy said it was actually expanding because people are reading more and going to college more. It's an industry I think I would be proud to work in.

 

I feel like I was on a path in the woods and have emerged from the treeline into a desert. I have a feeling the only real option is to go back to school and get a masters but it is so expensive.

post #8 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by EMartNJ View Post

I was in charge of A truck and the 3-4 personnel that were with me for whatever given day.

oh. ok.
Quote:

I have no interest in pursuing something related to that though.

yeah, well, you have to think about what you have to offer that somebody would pay for. stuff needs to move from place to place, and there is money in it.
Quote:


As far as publishing goes, from the interview I had the guy said it was actually expanding because people are reading more and going to college more.

the guy was lying to you. publishing is becoming something that can be done without much proffetional help. also, there will be an adjustment, and much less people will go to college in 20 years. people don't nessasarily read because they went to college.
Quote:


It's an industry I think I would be proud to work in.

there are a lot of housewives, and people who work at mcdonalds, you prepared for careers in fields that they thought would be fun
Quote:

I feel like I was on a path in the woods and have emerged from the treeline into a desert. I have a feeling the only real option is to go back to school and get a masters but it is so expensive.

don't invest more money, figure out what you can do to make a living.


look, you either make something, move something, sell something, help the people who do the previous things, or you provide the previous people some entertainment. that's pretty much what the economy is made up of. the farther left on the list you are, the better off you are (which the exceptions of the people who help put together finance for the group on the left). the farther right on the list, the more fun it is, but the weaker position you are in.

anyway, good luck.
post #9 of 93
simply saying 'i want to work in publishing' isn't enough. you need to look up certificate programs today. if they can be paid for out of your GI Bill, and will help you get a job, you need to apply for them right now. is there a local publishing firm in your area? I bet there is. or how about a local zine/magazine publishing group? look, i have a 'useless' undergrad degree in the humanities and am getting an equally 'useless' MA, but i've always made sure at every step of the way that i was also learning real skills and had a realistic, well-paying back up plan. that's not say that you're screwed for not taking these steps (it seems like you didn't have the time honestly), but you need to be a lot more proactive than your posts suggests -- you should be telling us what options there are for you.
post #10 of 93
Quote:
Originally Posted by EMartNJ View Post

For government hiring being a veteran is only worth 5 points. Hardly a big advantage or an advantage at all.

The idea that the 5 points are hardly an advantage is REALLY incorrect. The points are awarded to your total applicant score meaning that if you and I are both found to be eligible for a position, you get the 5 point boost.

So when scoring our applicant responses to the position, I may end up with a score of 100, you with a 96+5, possibly knocking me out of the running to be extended an interview.
post #11 of 93
You have to know how to sell yourself. Your posts in this thread are painful. You have to walk in with confidence, talk about how military experience is a huge plus (who cares if it is or isn't in reality!), talk about how your school is great and you did such a good job there, and more importantly, how you'd translate these experiences into benefits for your company. Use this forum to make sure your interview suit is awesome, too. smile.gif
post #12 of 93
Where do you live? It sounds like you might have a good chance to get into a military logistics internship if you're close to/can move to an installation.
post #13 of 93
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SirGrotius View Post

You have to know how to sell yourself. Your posts in this thread are painful. You have to walk in with confidence, talk about how military experience is a huge plus (who cares if it is or isn't in reality!), talk about how your school is great and you did such a good job there, and more importantly, how you'd translate these experiences into benefits for your company. Use this forum to make sure your interview suit is awesome, too. smile.gif

 

I'm not down on myself or lacking in confidence, just being real. I can't even get an interview so it would be terribly awkward to walk in and start talking about my military experience. I try to in my cover letter but I fear it comes across as irrelevant.

post #14 of 93
I hear ya Emart...I have no advice other then your welcome to boston to have a shoulder to cry on...its tough out there just keep at it. My GF wanted to go into publishing for awhile and found it pretty tough to break into. I can ask her about some of the places she applied. I also have an ex that does tech writing w/e that is. She does pretty well for herself I can ask her too.
post #15 of 93
Take an unpaid internship in dc. Tons of them on the hill and federal agencies. They love ppl with military experience. Like mentioned before you get advantages when applying for govt jobs with that experience. Tons of research asst jobs at think tanks here too. Look up fellow ships that may pay you something as well

As I keep carping on in these career sob stories, have you reached out to the alumni network at school? Your poli sci professors? Tell them your interests and predicament (of course mentioning the sacrifices made while on duty) and ask for suggestions of resources to tap.
Edited by Joffrey - 10/5/12 at 3:24pm
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