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TravelingGal

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 29, 2004
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17,193
OK so it''s december, I work from home and things are slow. Hence all the questions...


We had a thread going on about majors in college last night that got me thinking:

What was your career track? Also, if you went to university, what was your major? It would be fun to see how many of you actually have a "logical progression" or ended up a career that was completely unexpected. I''ll go first:

Major: English
Job in college: Retail sales person, "The Broadway"
1st job post college: The GAP salesgirl
The same year: Teacher, after school institution for Korean kids
A few months later: Salesperson for major education publisher (they liked my "teaching" experience and sales experience)
1 year later: Sales for top educational software company, promoted 2 years later to management
6 years later - after being a backpacking bum, education management for a multimedia software company
1.5 years later - sales director in a global organization (one of the most recognized companies in the world actually). Still dealing with multimedia


So I guess my major did directly help me in some things. But I would still rather be a writer...
 

KimberlyH

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jun 15, 2006
Messages
7,485
I am supposed to be packing but need to get laundry done first, hence all of the answers.


College Major: English
Jobs during college: Worked in two different public library systems for a total of 5 years. In between worked at in a hospital lab processing specimens and performing administrative duties:
First two years post college: Receptionist for a human resources company.
Next three years: Executive assistant to the Managing Director of a public affairs firm. It was a small office and I did everything from make coffee to edit and gussy up proposals and press releases.
Year 6: HR administrator for a mid-sized real estate company. I was the queen of paperwork, documentation, etc. Did all of the company party planning and anything the rest of the HR staff needed me to.
Currently: Back in school working towards my M.A. in Education and teaching credential. Have applied for my emergency credential and will begin substituting as soon as I recieve it. Haven''t worked since last May.

If there had been a degree program available locally I would have applied to earn my master''s in Library Science and I would have become a children''s librarian. Alas, that was not to be so teaching it is. I am actually really excited about it as I had contemplated the possibility when I first started college, so I feel like I''ve come full circle in a sense. I haven''t come close to reaching my potential as far as career is concerned. At every job I''ve held since college I have had at least one co-worker tell me I was much too intelligent and cabaple to be in each of my positions, which was a bit disheartening because I couldn''t figure out how to find a better job that was a good fit for me; I think I''m just not cut out for the corporate world.
 

Cehrabehra

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jun 29, 2006
Messages
11,071
I was going to school majoring in astronomy and physics and left to get married etc. and decided I wanted to have kids first and stay home with them THEN finish school (so I wouldn''t have to stop schooling or career to do so later).... when the youngest was in 1st grade and in school full time. That''s next year but next year is dh''s last year on his masters so I''m waiting on more year after that.... I still want the degree in physics but now I''m leaning more toward quantum than astro.... but we''ll see! Ask me again in a few years whether I went toward the finitely/infinitely large or the finitely/infinitely small ;-)
 

strmrdr

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 1, 2003
Messages
23,295
The short list leaving out about 50 things:

age ~10-17 home construction, electrical, HVAC install and repair, handyman, lawn care, snow removal, welding, bowling alley, bagging groceries, sales.
age 17-18 some of the above but mainly busting cast iron with a sledge hammer.
college: Electronics - EET

while in college: worked all of the above plus security/alarm install, refuse hauling, car stereo installing, custom speaker systems.

after college: security/alarm systems/computers for a while then:
up until I got laid off a bit ago: Computers, Networks and Programming. Mostly networks.
 

IrishAngel7982

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
May 5, 2006
Messages
1,412
Undergrad: BA in Developmental Psychology
College Jobs: When I was home on breaks and over the summer I worked at the Rainforest Cafe and also for an organization that provides support aides for special needs children involved in Park District programs like summer camps, swimming lessons, etc.
After Graduation: That summer I worked for the same organization with the special needs kiddos, and the following fall I started working in a school as a one-on-one special education instructional assistant.
6 Months After Graduation: I started grad school to earn a M.S.Ed and certification in School Psychology. I was thoroughly unimpressed with the program and didn''t like how little time school psychologists get to spend with the children here...so I only put in about a year''s worth of work in the program (I did some quarters full-time, some half-time.)
2 Years After Graduation: This May I transferred to a different school and started a new M.A. program...Early Childhood Special Ed.
Currently: I''m still working in the school and I love it (although the paycheck is absolutely ridiculous!) I"m working on my Master''s full-time and plan on sticking with this program. =) I''ll student teach in January of 08 (thanks to their lovely scheduling of only offering certain classes in certain semesters) and graduate in May of the same year.

I NEVER wanted to be a teacher...my mom teaches and I swore I''d never do it. Look where I ended up!
 

ephemery1

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Mar 20, 2006
Messages
1,724
High School Job: The Town Babysitter
College Major: Psychology (Minor: English/Creative Writing)
Post-College Jobs: Preschool teacher, Hospital Volunteer, Nanny
Grad-School Program: Counseling Psychology (school counseling certification)
Grad-School Jobs: Research Assistant, Internships (school counselor, therapist for sexually-abused kids)
Post-Grad Job #1: Project Manager for implementing Poli-Sci curriculum in high schools
Post-Grad Job #2: Academic Advisor for large undergrad engineering program
Grad-School Program #2: Counseling Psychology Licensure
Grad-School Jobs #2: College Counselor, Advertising/PR consultant

Phew... definitely a trend there, but kind of overwhelming to see it all laid out like that!
 

larussel03

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Oct 22, 2005
Messages
1,747
Undergrad major: Microbiology
Grad (MS) major: Microbiology
Job In College: Dishwasher briefly, pharmacy technician
1st Joe Post College: Data Analyst at MIT
The Same Year: Had brief stint at Express on weekends to make extra money but decided it wasn't worth it. Also started freelance medical writing and I now have a column! Moved in with my FI and got engaged.
2 years later: moved to Ann Arbor, unemployed for 2 months
2 months after that: started my internal sales/customer support job at a bioscience company to help market their major product. Began sales training (which I am still doing, it's fun!)
3 months later: I'm still waiting for a phone, doing QC for the company in the meantime...it's slow b/c it's a startup...

My major did help me out, although I found that I'm unhappy in a lab/analytical environment and I enjoy the business side of science much more. According to a personality assessment I had to take at the beginning of my sales training I'm a "natural salesperson" and I actually scored higher on the "match" test than people who have been in sales (higher than average) and I have no experience!


I did, however, start collge off as an english major!
 

aussiegirl23

Shiny_Rock
Joined
May 25, 2006
Messages
465
College Majors: Immunology/Virology & Astronomy
Jobs during college:
-1st-2nd year:
Lab tech in lab studying HIV/HEP-C interactions
-3rd-5th year: Research assistant on Mars Rover project
-5th year: Research assistant in lab studying HPV and cervical cancer
Job after graduation: Research assistant in lab studying prions and Alzheimer''s disease
Concurrent job after graduation (part time, from home): Research assistant on Mars Rover project

I have been waffling back and forth between biology and astronomy since my 1st day of college as a freshman. I still haven''t figured that one out yet. At least for now, I''m able to include both in my life -- the Astro department at my college is heavily involved in a bunch of the Mars exploration projects with NASA -- and they''ve been incredibly flexible in letting me continue on with my work at varying speed, depsite being out of state. I love this job... maybe wouldn''t if it was what I did all day, but for now, I''m going to hedge my bets. I must make a decision soon! (Repeats to self several times)... I must choose!

Aussie : p
 

sumbride

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Feb 17, 2006
Messages
3,867
All through highschool I worked for my parents'' company as a receptionist, file clerk, and newsletter editor.

College major: Public Policy Studies with Economics as an emphasis
College jobs: Newsletter editor, Resident Advisor, campus tour guide, admissions office ambassador
1st job out of college: Entry level assistant at a non-profit Trade Association for 1.5 years
2nd job: Customer service rep for another trade association, transitioned into Data Integrity, 3 years
3rd job: Database Administrator for yet another trade association, been here over 2 years now.

I talked to my college advisor last year and it kind of blew his mind that I''m in IT now, but "that''s what a liberal arts education does...." I''ve just always been into helping people and I like computers so it was a good fit... I''m not that thrilled with the future path for my career as it will take me more away from the people I like to help if I follow it blindly, so I''ve been sort of stagnating, trying to stay in the "training and helping" arena.
 

monarch64

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Aug 12, 2005
Messages
17,744
Travelingal, after reading your thread where you posted your wedding pics and all the fun captions, I would say writing is definitely in your future!!!! You''re funny and articulate and charming!

My career track has gone something like this:

High school job: retail--dept. mgr. of juniors at a big-box discount store
College major: first one was Radio/TV/Film (I wanted to be an Anchor!), hated the coursework right from the get-go, so second one (which stuck) was Textiles/Apparel/Merchandising, which I graduated with a B.S. in.
College jobs: keyholder/supervisor at juniors chain store, and same position at another well-known women''s apparel chain, as well as an internship at the latter.
Post college jobs: Department manager of children''s dept. in upscale department store, then onto Chicago for an assistant store manager position at a big-box upscale discount dept. store.
Present job: well, after 10 years in retail and a college degree later, I was burnt out, my father became ill, and now I have a nice little 8-5 desk job 5 blocks from my home. It may not be glamorous, nor do I have the benefit of an employee discount any longer, but dammit, there''s nothing quite like having the freedom to accept invitations to weddings, parties, social gatherings, etc. on the weekends, or being able to spend time with my family and husband and his family after "normal" business hours!

Someday I may decide to get back to retail or go into the buying part of it all, or even open my own business....but for now I''m off the fast track and enjoying life outside of the grind of unpredictable hours and sore feet!
 

TravelingGal

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 29, 2004
Messages
17,193
sweetpea, you started out as English and then went to Microbio? Wow, that dual brain talent!

Monarch, normal biz hours are priceless in my opinion. For the first 6 years of my career, I was focused and worked long hours. Now I am happy where I am and don''t care to be promoted or have anyone report to me ever again. I am in a cushy spot where I have the title, the benefits without any of the frustration. I consider my dues paid in this industry.

And thanks for the compliment. I actually do have a full book written...travel related stuff, of course. But I don''t know how to go about getting it published, so it sits around for my own entertainment for now.
 

monarch64

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Aug 12, 2005
Messages
17,744
Date: 12/11/2006 7:42:30 PM
Author: TravelingGal
sweetpea, you started out as English and then went to Microbio? Wow, that dual brain talent!

Monarch, normal biz hours are priceless in my opinion. For the first 6 years of my career, I was focused and worked long hours. Now I am happy where I am and don''t care to be promoted or have anyone report to me ever again. I am in a cushy spot where I have the title, the benefits without any of the frustration. I consider my dues paid in this industry.

And thanks for the compliment. I actually do have a full book written...travel related stuff, of course. But I don''t know how to go about getting it published, so it sits around for my own entertainment for now.
TG, you''re quite welcome. About getting published, are you familiar with any writing trade publications? I have no idea, but have always wondered how one goes about getting something published, be it through an agent or otherwise...I did a quick search from my homepage using "writing trade publications" and came up with a few things... is your book non-fiction? (Thinking Frommer''s) or the fun stuff?
 

TravelingGal

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 29, 2004
Messages
17,193
Date: 12/11/2006 8:31:36 PM
Author: monarch64

Date: 12/11/2006 7:42:30 PM
Author: TravelingGal
sweetpea, you started out as English and then went to Microbio? Wow, that dual brain talent!

Monarch, normal biz hours are priceless in my opinion. For the first 6 years of my career, I was focused and worked long hours. Now I am happy where I am and don''t care to be promoted or have anyone report to me ever again. I am in a cushy spot where I have the title, the benefits without any of the frustration. I consider my dues paid in this industry.

And thanks for the compliment. I actually do have a full book written...travel related stuff, of course. But I don''t know how to go about getting it published, so it sits around for my own entertainment for now.
TG, you''re quite welcome. About getting published, are you familiar with any writing trade publications? I have no idea, but have always wondered how one goes about getting something published, be it through an agent or otherwise...I did a quick search from my homepage using ''writing trade publications'' and came up with a few things... is your book non-fiction? (Thinking Frommer''s) or the fun stuff?
I have a Writer''s Market book that I haven''t looked at in some time. I would think one would need an agent. It''s fun stuff...a travelogue of sorts which was written as I went along without any hindsight. I probably should research this kind of thing more instead of coming up with questions for Hangout. Hee hee.
 

monarch64

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Aug 12, 2005
Messages
17,744
IrishAngel (again I enjoyed meeting you this Saturday--it was so fun!), I knew you were in grad school but couldn't remember your area of study...I kept meaning to ask you but there was bling everywhere, lol!

So now that I know...if you'd given me three guess that day, psych-related being one of them, I would've totally guessed that. Your strong and silent presence gave you away! (That's a compliment!!!)
Now I have to wonder (well, my ego does, hee hee) if you thought I was a total nutcase, ha ha!
ETA: I just re-read and your undergrad work was psych...sorry! One of my best friends is deciding whether to pursue her master's in special ed. now as well...maybe I should introduce her to you!
Oh, and I wanted to tell you also that I thought your "blingy" sweater was totally cute! I liked how you incorporated some extra bling into your wardrobe for the day, or was it just coincidence?

(Irish was wearing this pretty blue-ish green sweater with this delicate sort of rectangular buckle on one shoulder, it was really lovely! )
 

monarch64

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Aug 12, 2005
Messages
17,744
TG, I''m just now 3/4 of the way through Saving Fish From Drowning...is it anything like that?
 

TravelingGal

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 29, 2004
Messages
17,193
Date: 12/11/2006 8:46:00 PM
Author: monarch64
TG, I''m just now 3/4 of the way through Saving Fish From Drowning...is it anything like that?
I haven''t read that one. In fact, I have never read an Amy Tan book, although I had been tempted in college. Don''t know why I never did.

If I were to aspire to a particular writing style, it would be Bill Bryson. I am nowhere near as witty or brilliant though. Another that comes to mind is "Round Ireland with a Fridge" by Tony Hawks as far genre goes.
 

decodelighted

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jul 27, 2005
Messages
11,534
Date: 12/11/2006 8:38:48 PM
Author: TravelingGal
I actually do have a full book written...travel related stuff, of course. But I don''t know how to go about getting it published, so it sits around for my own entertainment for now.
Ahh. I wish I knew more or had an agent myself! I''ve known a couple folks who''ve had books published ... one wrote magazine articles & cold called & query-lettered agents until he got a bite ... the other got a job as an assistant at a literary agency, wrote a novel every a.m. between 6-8am, then submitted it to her own boss. I think she''s on her fourth novel now! DH is co-author of a computer-oriented "how-to" book ... he got the gig from his friend (the main author) .. and has recently been pitching an idea of his own to that publisher (turned down) and another (still in play). Computer stuff is kinda different though - he doesn''t have an agent either.

I agree with Monarch though ... you have a great "voice" & I''m sure whatever you write would be a great read!
 

Logan Sapphire

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Sep 5, 2003
Messages
2,369
Major: Sociology

Job in college: Catering, temping at US Airways

1st job post college: not really a job but rather a year of volunteering at a prison in England

Grad school program: MA in Sociology, with a specialization in Criminology

Grad school job: Teaching Assistant

1.5 years later: Child Protective Investigator with a Florida sheriff''s office

4 years later - Analyst with the US Department of Labor, using my degree''s research and evaluation skills but not my interests at all.

1.5 years later and counting - State Policy Advisor with the US Department of Justice- much more in tune with my interests, though not using research/skills as much. However, I can''t complain too much since I''ve gotten to go on drug and brothel raids, flown in helicopters and surveillance planes, etc. Pretty cool, sometimes!
 

Kit

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Sep 7, 2005
Messages
501
In a nutshell...

college major - sociology

relevant work experiences in chronological order
-college internships at ethnology museum and cultural festival
-production coordinator (film & TV) 2 yrs
-fundraising campaign coordinator 2 yrs
-director of public policy for national organization 3 yrs

Currently earning my Master of Public Administration, full time

who knows where I''ll be this fall???
 

IrishAngel7982

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
May 5, 2006
Messages
1,412
Date: 12/11/2006 8:41:55 PM
Author: monarch64
IrishAngel (again I enjoyed meeting you this Saturday--it was so fun!), I knew you were in grad school but couldn''t remember your area of study...I kept meaning to ask you but there was bling everywhere, lol!

So now that I know...if you''d given me three guess that day, psych-related being one of them, I would''ve totally guessed that. Your strong and silent presence gave you away! (That''s a compliment!!!)
Now I have to wonder (well, my ego does, hee hee) if you thought I was a total nutcase, ha ha!
ETA: I just re-read and your undergrad work was psych...sorry! One of my best friends is deciding whether to pursue her master''s in special ed. now as well...maybe I should introduce her to you!
Oh, and I wanted to tell you also that I thought your ''blingy'' sweater was totally cute! I liked how you incorporated some extra bling into your wardrobe for the day, or was it just coincidence?

(Irish was wearing this pretty blue-ish green sweater with this delicate sort of rectangular buckle on one shoulder, it was really lovely! )
Strong and silent? I don''t think I''ve ever been described that way! =) Silent, yes, because I''m very shy around people I don''t know, but strong and silent? If it''s good, then I''m all for it HAHA.

Honey, you were not a nutcase by any means. At all. I''m probably more of a nutcase than the four of you combined!

About my sweater, my mom gave it to me! Thanks for the compliment, and yes it was just coincidence. It was absolutely lovely meeting you too, we''ll have to do it again soon. =)

~Megan =)
 

AceP

Shiny_Rock
Premium
Joined
May 28, 2006
Messages
336
-Major: English lit
-During undergrad: internships at IBM, Fulbright Commission
-Following undergrad: two-year string of useless, big biz, what-should-i-do-with-myself jobs in NYC, while trolling Barnes & Noble for every "who-am-i-what-color-am-i-what-should-i-do" book on the shelves
-Grad school
-Now I am a happily employed (well, for the most part) journalist at a major news organization

TravelingGal: An agent is definitely one way to go. They will take a cut (generally 10-20%) of what you make from assignments they help you get, but they''re a foot in the door. Also, have you tried MediaBistro? It''s very useful site for all things media related. You can post inquiries on their freelance board, as well as choosing from a host of how-to articles and courses.
 

Molly1024

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jul 18, 2006
Messages
493
It''s really helpful to see such varied responses & intersting to see the paths different careers can lead to. I graduated in May and moved to a small, econonically depressed area in a military town and still am not able to find a job. It''s difficult to network when all your contacts are a thousand miles away but I''m really hoping for a change in the New Year. I know my first post-grad job will be neither glamorous nor my dream job, but I''m just hoping for one that increases my professional body of knowledge and makes me a more desirable candidate in the future.
 

Selkie

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jan 11, 2006
Messages
2,876
Major: English and Biology, minor in Environmental Studies
Jobs in college: library assistant, lab assistant, deckhand/marine bio teacher on a sailboat
1st job post college: internship with a whale research center on Cape Cod
Grad School: M.S.in Marine Sciences
1st job post-Grad school(1 year): Lab technician at large east coast oceanographic research inst.
Current job: For almost 7 years, I''ve been the lab manager for a marine bio lab at large SoCal university.

I love my job, and my field, but am getting a little itchy in academia. Currently, I''m trying to learn more about computer mapping (GIS) and database management, so I can combine that with my research skills and be marketable to a wider range of employers.
 

poptart

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
May 23, 2006
Messages
1,899
Date: 12/12/2006 12:03:23 AM
Author: Molly1024
It''s really helpful to see such varied responses & intersting to see the paths different careers can lead to. I graduated in May and moved to a small, econonically depressed area in a military town and still am not able to find a job. It''s difficult to network when all your contacts are a thousand miles away but I''m really hoping for a change in the New Year. I know my first post-grad job will be neither glamorous nor my dream job, but I''m just hoping for one that increases my professional body of knowledge and makes me a more desirable candidate in the future.
I also like reading all these. I live in a crappy military town also (we both hate it here!), and I graduate in May so I probably won''t have a great job after college either. My network is over 2500 miles away, so I guess I will just have to wait till we move closer to our hometown to jumpstart an actual career.

*M*
 

larussel03

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Oct 22, 2005
Messages
1,747
Date: 12/11/2006 7:42:30 PM
Author: TravelingGal
sweetpea, you started out as English and then went to Microbio? Wow, that dual brain talent!

Monarch, normal biz hours are priceless in my opinion. For the first 6 years of my career, I was focused and worked long hours. Now I am happy where I am and don''t care to be promoted or have anyone report to me ever again. I am in a cushy spot where I have the title, the benefits without any of the frustration. I consider my dues paid in this industry.

And thanks for the compliment. I actually do have a full book written...travel related stuff, of course. But I don''t know how to go about getting it published, so it sits around for my own entertainment for now.
Haha, yeah I initially was english/communications and a french minor but ended up in biology then microbiology. I should have double majored and finished the french minor (I missed it by 2 lit classes) but I wanted to graduate on time since changing my major late made it harder to. I always loved science and I''m good at it, but I hate working in it, and in my career path I find myself drifting back towards communications and english with my writing and sales/customer support jobs now. Funny how things like that happen...
 
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