I'm never going to get a job

There’s a lot of whining ahead, but I didn’t feel like really putting the effort into making this a Pit rant.

I graduate in May, with double majors in biomedical engineering and biochemistry (it’s only taken me 5 years to do it). It sounds impressive (at least, all my relatives sound awed), but the truth of the matter is that there doesn’t seem to be a whole lot of demand for biomedical engineers. Sure, there are plenty of medical companies, but it seems they’d rather hire someone with kickass engineering skills, and teach them the biology, then hire someone with lots of biology/medical-related classes and perhaps only good engineering skills.

Add the fact that Engineering Career Services sucks at getting medical companies to recruit on campus. They try to placate us by saying that there are “several” companies that come to career fairs to recruit us, but they get a lot of leeway because big consulting firms come and are willing to recruit any engineering major. So the actual number of engineering firms looking for BMEs is rather small.

I’m in a biomedical engineering student group that has amassed a list of perhaps 300 or so companies that could/do hire people with my major. We’ve tried giving ECS this database, but they haven’t done anything with it. As a further matter of fact, they don’t want our student group cold-calling these companies to ask them more about they’re hiring practices, because they’re afraid we’ll “misrepresent the university.” But at the same time, when any BME students express they’re frustrations at the poor recruiting, they tell us we have to do our own job searches. Which would involve cold-calling companies! Go figure.:rolleyes:

But onto the matter that really led to this post. We sign up for interview times online. There’s this thing called “preselection”–a company looks through resumes and if they like what they see, they’ll grant you preselection status. That means you can sign up a day before they open signup to anyone who meets they’re qualifications. I didn’t get preselected by a company, but there were 4 open spots as of this morning, and I figured I had a chance. So I headed to the engineering computer lab, logged in, and opened a couple windows, to maximize my potential to get one. At exactly 7 AM (when they open up the signups) I was able to get to the page that would enable me to pick an interview slot. All 4 were still open, so I figured it was my lucky day. But alas, every time I tried to click on one, I’d get a “server busy” screen, rather than a “you have signed up for an interview at XX:XX.” I had to backtrack a couple screens, and getting into the system took forever (not surprising, as there were probably 30-50 other BME seniors and grad students trying to sign up for 4 open spots). By the time I got in, all the slots were filled, and I have to content myself with being #2 on the waiting list.

I don’t want to give the impression that all I want to do is sit around and have a job fall into my lap. I have a list of companies I’m interested it, and I’ve started sending my resume out. I just have this sinking feeling that I’m not going to get any offers. Like many other engineers, the one thing I would comfort myself with, as I saw many [WARNING: joking stereotype ahead] business and liberal arts majors starting their partying on Wednesday night[/joking stereotype], was the fact that I would actually have a job, and a somewhat high-paying one at that, after I graduated.

Ahh, I feel better.

Consider headhunters.

But you will get a job.

Period.

So ditch that negative attitude.

I’m not giving you any of that “bootstraps” cr*p, just saying that you can and you will get a job.

Keep yer chin up.

I think this is an odd statement. The first time I read it, I thought “bullshit”, then I thought about it.

There is nothing stopping you from contacting these companies. Their concern is about the student group contacting them. If you, on your own, contacted them, sent them a resume, that’s fine. If the student group contacts them, the group is representing the university. So call them. Send them a resume - the worst they can say is no.

Now that I’ve had some time to cool off (and some coffee), I realized that although inconvenient, this isn’t the worst thing in the world. If anything, it’s what I needed to really get me motivated to get my job search in full gear.

Bosda–I’ve heard of headhunters, but what exactly do they do? I’m guessing I pay them $$, and they go and knock on company doors for me?

Lsura–I realize I can (and will) call companies. But doesn’t it make more sense to have one group do the calling (we were planning on having a little info session, so the callers would know what to say and how to act), rather than have 40 or so people, in various states of formality and with varying degrees of information, call?

easy e, I got laid off two months ago today, and believe me, I’ve been thinking the exact same thing. The deal with headhunters is employers pay them to find you. I’ve been out of work a few times in my life, and I would never use a company which required that I pay them to find a job. One nice thing about head hunters – the higher the salary they get for you, the more they get paid, so it’s in their best interest to sell you high.

Concerning college placement offices, I still remember walking into my college and telling them I was about to graduate with a degree in Japanese. Their response was “Can you do that?”:confused: Needless to say, they were no help whatsoever, which is why this Pittsburgher wound up getting a job in Hawaii thanks to a help wanted ad in the Honolulu Star Bulletin.

Good luck, and let’s both of us hang in there together.
CJ