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  1. #1

    Graduated over 3 years ago, and no decent job

    I find some comfort in reading some of these posts so I thought I'd share my situation. I am at a total loss right now...I graduated in 2005 from a decent school with a not so wise choice of a degree in art history and fine arts. I chose those majors because that was what interested me at the time. I found after graduating that I most likely would not do much with it. I thought about grad school for art history, but decided it wasn't for me. So almost four years later, I still have not gotten a decent paying job, but I have worked steadily at crappy hourly jobs. Last Spring, I decided to apply into a local community school for ultrasound, but it's looking like I may not get into the program despite taking the prerequisites because it's so competitive. I'm still going to apply, but I feel so stuck and that I'm getting no where. I thought about a master's in social work, but it's looking like it would be very difficult to get into the program with no experience in the field. I am completely lost. My plan as a sonographer may not work out, I don't have a decent paying job, and I still have to live at home. To add to the mix, I have clinical depression. The last time I felt this bad, I had just graduated. I have since been in therapy and take medication, but I can't help but feel so crappy. Any suggestions, thoughts, or opinions?

  2. #2
    Wow, your situation sounds very similar to mine. I too graduated with a fine arts degree in 05, and haven't done much with it. Or gotten a job related to it. After the degree i had no interest in staying in the field (not that there's much out there in the way of jobs). I felt like I learned nothing during 4 years of that degree. At this point, it finally makes sense to me why people go to school. To get a job. For some reason I never really got that point at 18-22. I regret not taking more graphic design courses that taught me computer programs and such. I find my mind is turning more practical and am looking to do courses that teach technical practical things, so I can feel confident in actually having a skill to present. Instead of feeling like I'm BSing.

    Some days i feel like I'm falling behind my other peers who have good careers and have moved out of home/hometown. (I still live with the 'rents) Right now I'm trying to save some money, but i haven't saved too much. Not where I envisioned myself being at 26. But i guess that's what you get for being indecisive. I'm trying to save at least 10,000 to take that world trip I've always wanted. before grad school. Right now i still feel like a teenager because I am living at home. Sucks.

  3. #3

    very similar situations

    Wow, you sound like a mirror image of me. It never occured to me at that age why i was going to college either. I don't think I was ready to go and should have taken some time to explore my options. But I cannot live in the past. While I feel that I did learn something from those four years, I know now that it was very impractical for me. I am in the exact position as you...trying to save money, and I didn't envision myself still living at home, which I think is what bothers me most. I am an adult, but don't fully feel like one. While I'm grateful for my parents and their help, I really, really, really would rather be on my own. Grad school is expensive also. And it will be a little while if I do decide to go back. But I do find comfort that someone else is experiencing the same kind of crap that I am and that I'm not alone...I always feel like I'm alone. And like you, I feel like I'm falling behind as well with friends who are settled in careers, homes, and marriages. Thank you for your post, I'm glad to hear I'm certainly not alone in this.

  4. #4

    I can relate for sure.

    Yea...I can really relate to all of the previous posts on this subject. I am 25 and graduated a little over 2 years ago with BS in Hospitality from a large state public school and have not had much success at all in terms of landing a "professional/good paying" type of job. I have been working in Retail, restaurants, and hotels since I was 15 and that is still what I am doing. I really don't think that I want to go into management right now or maybe ever so I am stuck doing hourly jobs.

    The most that I have ever gotten paid was 16.10 per hour and that was as an Assistant Manager in a retail paint store. I quit that job after working with some really shitty people after about 9 months. Then went unemployed for about 8 months and currently I am working as a cashier at a fast food type of restaurant getting paid 7.50 and hour. It blows big time.

    I always was under the impression that it doesn't really matter what you got a degree in or what you majored in. I always had the idea that getting your batchelor's degree meant that you accomplished a long term goal, jumped through a societal loop, and that it shows that you can be trained into some sort of "professional" career. Now, I understand that it may take a certain degree for some things....like accounting, engineering, pre-med, nursing, but everything else seems pretty standard and good enough to allow one to get their foot in the door in some professional setting.

    But what the fuck do I know anymore. I am totally confused about what my four years of college mean to any employeer. It has been the total mindfuck of my time on this earth so far.

    I don't think a grad degree would help that much, so I think that I am done with school, unless I try to go to a tech school and learn a skill like someone had mentioned.

    I also live with my mom too. I am grateful but I know what ya'll mean about wanting to be on your own. And it just kills me that my life simply doesn't seem to be progressing at all. I guess I am just LOST as fuck. I am LOST. Peace

  5. #5
    PosterNutBag- did you go to UNLV? As someone also with a background more predominate in the leisure industry this is an awful time to have expertise in leisure for sure. Where are you located now?
    "An end to the tears.. and the in-between years.. and the troubles Ive seen.. now that Im clean" (M. Gore)

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    ohio-penn stateline
    i completely relate to all of these posts. it is comforting knowing that i am not the only one.. although, its sad to know that its the same case for so many of us out there. i do, am 26, living at home, and feeling behind all of my counterparts. i havent done anything great either.

    i hope we all begin to have better luck in the near future. sometimes i feel like i was dooped. i dont want to have an elitest attitude, but i do get mad when im doing the same job as someone else that does not have a degree, because they wont be in debt 10 yrs or more in student loans like i will be. college is marketed so well. and yes, many people do very well. i did well indeed. but the supply and demand of jobs and labor does not equal the supply of graduates. and the 4yr degree is the new high school diploma of the millenium. it no longer sets us apart like it did for our parents generation. at least i dont believe so.

  7. #7
    I went to a college that, in the 1970s, stood out as a very prestigious institution and dwarfed most of piddly-shit local colleges, which were nothing more than glorified community colleges. However, the past 15 years brought with them two major sea changes that I'm certain changed all of that. First, my once-prestigious college got super greedy and started letting in a shit-ton of students, poured all of their money into athletics and let most 1st and 2nd year classes balloon from 30 kids to 300 kids. This brought heavy malaise to a lot of teachers and released lots of stupid into the air. Meanwhile, most of those piddly-shit schools started to grow also and it became apparent that pretty much anybody was able to go to college, even people who fucked off in high school and never had any plans. On top of that, most of those piddly places fashioned themselves into that new form of college that doesn't do any academic research whatsoever and is nothing more than a giant glorified career center. My dumbshit jock brother went to one of those retarded campuses and his entire senior year was spent learning how to write resumes and get interviews. How studious. I guess I should feel like I'm in the wrong because I was still reading 6-10 heavy-ass books at a time and working towards my DEGREE!

    Couple this educational rot-fest with an outside environment where tons of non-college idiots were still managing to hijack the workforce via sweet connections and the ever-powerful bald "experience" angle, and traditional academic-types of my ilk became completely doomed. My girlfriend works as an administrator in the pharmaceutical industry (Fortune 500 company at that), and her and dozens of other B.S., M.S., and PhD. workers are still reporting to higher-ups that never set foot on a campus.

  8. #8
    Higher education still helps but its value has definitely decreased as many have said.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by 1977
    Higher education still helps but its value has definitely decreased as many have said.
    Agreed. Alot of people are valuing vocational skills these days in addition to a college degree. To the OP, consider a career where a vocational degree or certificate is sufficient. School is generally very inexpensive at community colleges and what not.
    For example, emergency medical technicians dont require an advanced degree. After one year or so of inexpensive schooling, you can start at the entry level.

  10. #10

    Bachelor's degree

    People end up having careers that have nothing to do with the degree they have. My husband (29) got his BA in Psychology, Master's in Elementary Education right after college, and now is working as an assistant coach and part-time prof at a university! I have my BA in Graphic Design and worked at a advertising firm for about a year, now at a newspaper(which kind of sucks, and is way below my qualifications) but I'm thankful because even here they prefer BAs over tech school certifications (even though the work could easily be done by someone with a tech degree).

    As far as comparing yourself with friends with careers, friends married, friends who are homeowners, friends who moved out of town, friends with kids....try not to because homeowners are thinking.. man if only I only had rent, I could leave without having to worry about selling. Marrieds are thinking... man I'm so young to be married... do I have to have a baby now?
    People with careers are thinking.. I'm only 25, if only I just took a relaxing coffee-shop job for a while. People who moved away from home... miss home! Why did I leave again?

    I feel lost too! I took a few Journalism classes and decided that's not the direction I want to go. I thought about Culinary school. Now I'm thinking of trying substitute teaching! My husband is going back to school again to get his Law degree, so we may be moving! So there will be more challenges, and feeling lost if we do that. I think it's just part of this time of life.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    I don't regret getting my Bachelors, but I almost do regret furthering my education (I did more education after my BA). I think this, combined with the fact that I have so little job experience puts me in a really weird position in terms of hiring possibilities. I'm pretty mad at the world, because I did what I thought was right, I worked hard at it, and now it's just working against me. I wish I would've gone down a different path, and now I feel destined to perpetually wonder "What if?"

  12. #12
    There are so many people out there with a bachelor’s degree nowadays that I think just having a bachelor’s degree does not mean much anymore. Most international job postings require at least a master’s degree. (Believe me, I've looked into trying to get work abroad.) I believe that soon, some jobs in the USA will follow that trend. I’ve noticed that a lot of jobs require highly specialized knowledge – whereas most bachelor’s degrees would only give a general breadth of understanding on a wide variety of subject matters. Many of these are the jobs are the ones where it is hard to find good people – thus companies end up having to pony up a better salary, benefits, and working conditions to keep and attract people. I know of folks who went to a vocational school and are now doing better than some college grads because they made the investment in themselves to learn a specialized skill set.
    Last edited by Jabberwocky; 01-13-2009 at 02:35 PM.
    At best, life is a series of educated guesses.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Kentucky across river from Cincinnati
    I am in the same boat. Feel the same way as everyone else, B.A. in History, Minor in German, I thought at least with the German I could get in with a company doing that. But apparently it doesn't matter unless it is Spanish, it sucks! Sub teaching right now, and 24now sub teaching is good money but you do not get called everyday so it necessitates itself to have another part time job.

    One more thought, I think those two year degrees are the best thing going now a days because you send minimal money on it, still have the general knowledge that us Bachelors have, and companies are more likely to hire you because you are not overqualified, but yet they get paid the same amount as people with degrees. Also if they want to move up in a company the company usually will reimburse them for their continuing school.


  14. #14
    I see German and French requirements quite a bit for people working with international agriculture or sometimes pharma. Could just be this area (WI) but I was curious about ag jobs and saw a number in my field that either required or were seeking people who knew French or preferably German. Maybe check out higher tech fields?
    "An end to the tears.. and the in-between years.. and the troubles Ive seen.. now that Im clean" (M. Gore)

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    The Oregon Trail
    It's true...I'm from the midwest, also, an agricultural manufacturing region, and the company I used to work for when I was a student did quite a bit of partnering with German agricultural manufacturing firms, so there was quite a bit of back and forth with the German companies.
    "Even when I've f*&%ed up, I've spun it into a learning experience that's brought me to bigger and better things."

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