View Full Version : How'd you get started down your career path?

Dan Turk
06-14-2004, 12:20 AM
I'll be graduating soon with a degree in Sociology and Criminology...how do I find a job? What I want to do is work for the state in some sort of position counseling or helping kids. I'd even be a "social services coordinator" which is where you tell people where to go to get aid, and set up appointments with them at the proper places and help secure transportation, child care, etc.

I've been to www.myflorida.com and searched for jobs, under therapy and counseling, but they all require experience. Hell, all the jobs there require experience, which leads me to ask...are they maybe just not listing entry-level jobs? In Florida, much is said about the lack of DCF (department of child and families) employees and social workers, yet on their web site, they do not appear to be in need of any.

Should I take one of my days off and hoof it around to local government offices and see what they recommend, so I know what to do in this final year of school?

How'd you start out?

China Guy
06-14-2004, 07:35 AM
I was a Chinese major in college, then went to China. It has changed my life in uncountable ways as I listen to my 1/2 Chinese daughter play the piano in Shanghai. Oh yah, I've been a guidebook writer, investment banker, consulting manager and now big swinging sales guy for a multinational to other multinationals and based in Shanghai. I've lived and worked in Hong Kong, Tokyo, Taipei, Shanghai and spent several years in the area of Southwest China. Fight the power.

It's good to start looking now rather than waiting like most people to graduate. Heck, find someone in your field and ask them "if you were me now, what would you do" or post on a message board or something

Winston Smith
06-14-2004, 07:47 AM
10 years ago, I was a Truck Driver and a College dropout. I got tired of never getting ahead and not having any future career prospects, so I started looking in the Sunday Paper Classifieds, and selected the highest-paying job I could find without having to go to Law or Med School - NT Administrator (hey, it was the 90's ferchrissake). I've done very well for myself, too, through the tech wreck, the Arthur Anderson fiasco, and all the other forces that conspired to thin the herd of Network Admins I've managed to not only keep my job (a feat unto itself), but I've gotten a raise every year I've been in the business, and I've been promoted twice in the last 4 years.

The rest, as they say, is history.

My point (if there is one) is to figure out what the Man needs done, and get a job doing it.

06-14-2004, 08:48 AM
I thought this was going to be about how I decided what my career path was going to be. Instead, it's a much simpler question: I did two internships which gave me sufficient experience to find a job in the area I studied. I don't know why more Florida school don't seem to encourage internships; for me, it was a graduation requirement.

Regardless, my first job was still a bit of a stretch in terms of being related to my major, which was Journalism/Public Relations. I was a customer service representative for a car rental company.

My advice is to take any job, or temp, in the city where you want to live and then keep your eyes peeled for The Perfect Opportunity. You might volunteer evenings and weekends to gain the experience that will lead you to The Perfect Opportunity. Use The Network: talk to everyone you know, everyone your relatives know, all your friends' friends, you get the picture. Circulate the idea that you are looking for a position in your area and ask people to let you know about any openings. Make random cold calls to the agencies you're interested in working for and ask what it takes to get hired in. Be patient and persistent and realize that the first job you take might just be to pay the bills: it doesn't mean your chosen field of work is lost if you spend a year or two flipping burgers or something. (You could give them advice before they get eaten!) When you graduated from college, nobody tells you that you might have to work some crappy jobs before you get the one you trained and studied for.

(And, IMHO, working for DCF might be the worst possible job in the state. I knew someone who was a caseworker for the abused, neglected and fell-through-the-cracks kids and she was traumatized from seeing all the trauma these kids went through. Are you sure you want to do that? I'd look into volunteering or internships before committing your life to a job like that.)