May 9, 2011

The clock is ticking...

We are really getting pressed for time in my job search. And things aren't looking bright and sunny. Basically, if I can't find a job and start working this week, there is no way that we will be able to afford another month's rent, or the bills that I'm already behind on. Oh the joys of being a "grown-up." I feel as though I have exhausted all sources for jobs. I have applied at numerous family and fast food restaurants, retail stores, temp agencies, office buildings, and odd jobs (such as "sign spinning"). Since the beginning of the year, I have filled out probably close to 175 applications, and I had only gotten a single phone back in those five months. I feel like I'm doing all the right things too.

I have been targeting my resume to each job that i apply for. I think long and hard about what to put in my cover letter. I send follow up emails and phone calls. But, these days, no one cares whether or not you have the equivalent of four years of college with a 3.7 GPA, or the fact that you're hard working and learn quickly. All they want is that one piece of paper saying that you graduated, even if it was with a 2.0.

In my opinion, college is useless. There is very little that I learned in college that I didn't learn in high school. There's the two years of Spanish, some American history, and how to live in one room with someone for nine months without driving each other crazy. There was also how to distinguish which frat a guy was in, how to manage the emotional attacks that girls inflict on each other, and how much time you REALLY need to get ready in the morning to still make it to that 8 a.m. class on time. That is my three years of college education summed up in one paragraph.

I learned no new writing skills or math skills. I learned nothing about physics or chemistry.

The life skills that I need in order to be successful at a job, I learned while actually working. Not in a classroom. I learned how to effectively manage my time while filing hundreds of records. I learned how to calm down irritated customers and help flustered freshmen figure out how to find a book in the library. I learned about accountability and confidentiality and teamwork. I learned how to learn. Not from a professor. Not from a book. But from learning itself, from experiencing it first hand.

I try to explain this in my interviews, that while I may not have a certificate explaining that I'm not stupid, that I am quite intelligent. I learn quickly. I work efficiently. I have good customer service skills. And I want to prove to you that a degree means little to me. (Unless of course you're a doctor or a surgeon or work in some other profession where specific skills and concepts must be formally taught, and cannot be learned from doing.)

I know I'm ranting, but I feel as if today's society has really lost focus on what is important; performing better than expected, respecting your employees and having faith in them, and being a global family. It shouldn't be totally about money or competition. It should be about service and quality and being proud of what you have done for your company.

Well, I suppose I will go and fill out even more applications, because we're getting desperate.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

1 comment:

  1. I'm struggling to find work for this summer (and to continue on after that) too, although I haven't done nearly as many applications as you have, it's still really disappointing to never hear anything back! I've been applying to many campus jobs at my university, which are designed for students, but since they're office or secretary type jobs and I only have retail and factory experience, they don't seem to want me! It's so frustrating. Everywhere wants experience, so how do you get it?
    Good luck on the job hunt!