June

The Job Experience Abyss

June 29, 2017

“I am sorry, but I think you would likely become bored with this position based on your extensive past experience.”

“Although you have a really great background, we are going to move forward with candidates that have more [insert obscurely specific role] experience.”

Is it possible to be both over-qualified and under-qualified at the same time?

I think it is probably more appropriately coined, over-qualified and under-experienced (at least in my case). According to the Federal Reserve Bank, four years ago over 44% of graduates were underemployed or holding a job that did not require the degree they held, and this number has only risen.

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Currently, I am attempting to apply for entry-level positions, except they require several years experience. I graduated literally one-year and one-month ago today, and I went straight from college to grad school. Other than my two-month summer internships (every single year), I am entirely new to the working world.. AND no one wants to take the time and resources to train me for an entry-level position ANYWHERE.

The job market is saturated with people with college or graduate degrees, so they no longer provide you with a security blanket. But I think what is even worse than a college or graduate degree failing you, is that no matter what experience you have or are gaining at the moment, it might not provide any help and, in some cases, it could even harm your chances, in getting a job.

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In my field, you could work at a firm for five years, but if you plan to switch fields, then your five years experience won’t get you anywhere when firms are looking for attorneys with five years experience in a different field than you have been practicing. Not to mention if you decide to switch occupations or just want a step in the door, you’re likely to be “over-qualified” for those positions and over-looked for more appropriate candidates for the position.

What is the secret?

I Want More than 27%

June 22, 2017

After graduating law school and taking the bar, I wanted to work somewhere part-time while anticipating bar results and before I took a “real” full-time position. What I did not realize is that my temporary job would turn into something bigger and last the next ten months.

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Working in D.C.- 2 years ago

However, that job has come to an impasse, and now I have to figure out what I want to do… While attending law school, I had every intention of working abroad or in Washington, D.C.  in international development. However, now that that possibility has become a reality, I am not sure that it is what I actually want to do.

For the first time in my life, I don’t know what is up next and it is exciting – BUT also terrifying!  Also, I am really happy with where I am, physically and mentally.  I think the dilemma that I have reached is whether I should strive to live life and be happy or to continue to pursue my “dream career.”

I am not sure why I can’t do both at the same time… But I am pretty sure the two (at least in the past) were not aligned. Now I think I can make it work, however my career goal has changed.. to what, I don’t know.

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Graduating with my LL.M.

I think the best advice that have I received so far is to look for what I don’t want to do with my life, rather than what I do want to do. Because I will get to the same result, but there will be much less disappointment, AND it is okay to find a lot of different jobs that you just don’t want to do.

I know our generation is haunted with words like entitlement and spoiled, especially when it comes to job decisions. I’ve even heard members of my own family say that you aren’t meant to be happy at work, it is a job, and it’s just what you have to do.

But what is the point of living if you are just miserable the majority of the week- a typical Monday-Friday 9-5 job, you would only enjoy a couple days of the week- or 25% of the year. Looking at the life expectancy of the average woman in America (78 years old– assuming I will even reach that age), I will only get to enjoy about 5000 days of the next 18,980 days of my life- or about 27% of the rest of my life.

I just don’t accept that I can’t enjoy the majority of my life. I realize that I will have jobs that I dislike or entry level positions that I just don’t enjoy. But that is not the same as a career or long-term position that makes you miserable. I am more than willing to work a job I hate when I need to or to rise in a company.

But to take a job that you despise because it seems like it is what you should do or it is what everyone else thinks you should do is going to lead to years of disappointment and regret. For now, I am going to enjoy my years of ambiguity, because it could lead to something great. But it has taken me YEARS to realize this.

 

In My Pursuit of Happiness

June 19, 2017

As a recent law school graduate that has passed the bar, I am overwhelmed with questions like: “What law are you practicing?,” “Where are you working?,” “Which firm do you work for?” I am sure that all recent college or professional school graduates understand what it is like to go through this.

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My boyfriend & I at my law school graduation.

I think is hard for me because I have always known what I am going to do next. From high school- it was college, from college- it was law school. This is the first time in my life that I have gotten the infamous “What are you doing now?” questions.

I want to be excited about this point in my life where I can pursue anything, but I am the type of person that has always had a plan and it provides me with a feeling of security. I can’t escape the feeling of embarrassment when I have to give an ambiguous answer about my current employment.

I think I want to use this blog as way to track my journey. I know so many people are going through this stage in their life, and at least for me it is hard to connect with others because I am too shy/embarrassed to discuss it with anyone. So if you are in this stage in your life or have already gone through it, please message or comment below. I am starting to get excited about what is up next.