Sunday, August 05, 2007

Unemployed 17 Months And Counting....

I have always advised students to be more flexible and to have as wide of a range of experience as possible while in school. So how does a guy with ".... a PhD in biophysics, a medical degree, a master's degree in electrical engineering, and a joint bachelor's in chemistry and physics..." go 17 months without employment?

Granted, I don't have a first-hand knowledge of the job situation in the bio-medical field, but really, a guy with this kind of broad knowledge would be highly in demand, I would think. The only thing that would push him over the top would be getting a law degree and being a patent lawyer. But still, what he has is more than good enough. So why is he having such a hard time finding a job?



JP said...

This guy is greedy. He wants a job that hits every aspect of his background and training and pays six figures. He lacks a basic job-searching skill -- that of tailoring a resume to meet a job description.

I have a Ph.D. in physics and had the same droopy, woe-is-me attitude for a few months. Then, I started tailoring my CV and cover letters to better present myself for each particular position that I apply for. If he REALLY is having so much trouble finding a job, he should apply for a technician-type job and just cut out some of the irrelevant information from his application package. For example, if a company does not care about his experiences in health sciences, he need not list those experiences.

It is naive indeed for him to think that pleading, "I have a broad knowledge base and can learn anything quickly!" is enough to make a company want to hire him.

vica said...

I feel his pain. I've been rejected by every employer in the past 4 months. I'm going back to school for another BS. Why did I pick physics?!?!?!?!?!

galoisborre said...

There were three people walking down the street, the first was a musician, the second was physicist and the third one was poor too...

Jim. said...

A PhD in physics (and probably other things too, but mine is in physics) effectively blocks your getting any little normal jobs, something at the petrol station and so forth. Add to that, that when I search for jobs I am lucky if I can even find any for which to apply!

I tried the following experiment: I found a job advert and wrote a CV and covering letter SPECIFICALLY aimed at it, saying I had experience in EVERYTHING they asked for, even in the same order as the advert. I wrote it without reference to the truth, just to see if it was possible for anyone to get an interview, assuming they were ideal for the job. My experimental application was rejected out of hand just as readily as my normal ones.

Once you've been unemployed for a while, that starts to look suspicious too. Let's face it, you don't need to have much wrong with you before you're not the best candidate they see that day.

I'm going to try some vocational training next and hope that nobody ever asks what I did with my life until I was thirty.