Jobs Outside Teaching

Discussion in 'Job Seekers' started by Bseballchick, Aug 28, 2009.

  1. Bseballchick

    Bseballchick Rookie

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    Aug 28, 2009

    Hey All,
    This is my first post and I'm hoping for some beneficial information and words of wisdom!
    I'm not sure where to start...I'm pretty much at my wits end. I started teaching about 9 years ago in Special Education. After teaching for 6 years, I started feeling really burned out and unhappy with various things. Special ed isn't easy! I started wondering if teaching was really for me, and wanted to try something else, while I was still young enough to do so, and not married or tied down to any one area. So, I voluntarily left teaching, which led to a 2 year nightmare. I literally applied to jobs of all types. From entry-level office to retail, publishing, HR, etc. I was originally told since I had a BA degree in Liberal Studies, I could do almost anything. I understood that I'd have to start from the bottom, but figured if I worked hard, I'd make my way up wherever I landed. Well, I could NOT get a job. I was told I was either over-qualified, based on all my education, and the fact that I was a teacher for so many years. Or, I was told that I didn't have enough (or any) experience in anything else, besides teaching! I used up all my savings, had to move back home with my parents, and pretty much lived a nightmare. I finally decided to go back to teaching this past year. I ended up having a great year, and while it was stressful, I made good friends and pretty much enjoyed going to work each day. I looked forward to going back to school this coming year. Well, due to budget cuts and low enrollment, I ended up being bumped when my district cut a ton of people. Since it was my first year in the district, I was one of the first cut. A woman with more seniority bumped me, when her position was cut. So, here I am, once again, without a job. I've been looking for weeks, and applied to a few openings, but there is just nothing out there. Special ed. used to be somewhat "safe", but not any longer. There used to be Special Ed. positions open, even when gen. ed. positions were so hard to come by. Not anymore. It's insane. There is simply nothing out there! I am so angry and upset and honestly just done with education. I need a career with job security. My problem is that I've been down this road and didn't get anything! I know I'm not the only teacher who has left teaching for one reason or another. They do it all the time. What I need to know is what can I do, or where can I go to be hired in a non-teaching position??? And, I'm not talking about part-time work as a waitress or clerk, while I continue to look for a teaching job. It's not going to happen. I can't not have a full-time job after the 2 years I went through. I've barely got enough money to live another two months at most. I honestly am frantic, and need a job and money to pay my bills. I'm also wondering what you guys do while you are searching for jobs? Do you collect unemployment? I know many work part-time jobs or sub, but that doesn't pay the bills! At least not for me. Cost of living is high where I am. I'm not married, so I don't have a husband to support me. Subbing is a joke. The districts are so bad off around here, that they are putting notices out letting people know that they aren't even hiring new subs! That's not enough security for me. I have to have a steady paycheck. I really just want to start over. I just feel lost as to what field I could go into with a background in teaching. I'm happy to go back to school for a few classes if necessary, but I can't get a whole other degree!
    Please help me with information or advice on getting a good job-actually starting a new career outside of teaching! And, how do I get experience in another field, when they won't give me a chance!
    Sorry for the length of this, I just had to vent my frustrations and worries that have been building! Thanks in advance!
     
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  3. MrsA

    MrsA Rookie

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    Aug 28, 2009

    Hi Bseballchick! This is a great place to come and vent. There are lots of supportive people here.

    Have you looked into collecting unemployment? You may be eligible since you did not leave your last job willingly. That would be the first option I would look at.

    As for a job with security...I don't know that such a thing exists. However, I know that there are some fields, like nursing, that you can go back to school for and start working fairly quickly. My sister just finished a short class (I think a month?) to get her first nursing license. I don't know all of the logistics of it, but I know that she will be eligible to work as a nurse by November.

    There are lots of people on this board who have considered going into nursing, so maybe they will have more insight. That is the only field I can really think of that you can get into quickly that has some amount of job security.
     
  4. emmakate218

    emmakate218 Connoisseur

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    Aug 28, 2009

    I don't have any advice to offer really because I am also at my wits end concerning the future my career...whatever career it ends up being.

    This past spring, I started contemplating going into the healthcare field because of the job prospects and it's a field that would allow me to help people, which is essentially what draws me to any profession. I thought more and more about all this throughout this past summer. I first contemplated becoming a R.N., which would take me approximately 2 1/2 years and I'd end up with an A.S.N.. Ultimately though, I'd rather become a R.D., which after much research over the past week or so, I found that it would take me the same amount of time. I'm in the process of updating records with my local community college so that come spring, I can register for courses without any holds. I will have to complete quite a few basic biology, and chemistry, and one math course since I didn't have those with my first B.S.. I'm also planning to schedule an advising appointment with an advisor at the university I would finish my second B.S. at. As I'm doing all this research, I find myself thinking it's all crazy, but it's no different than if I was going for a M.Ed.. It's just scary because I'm venturing into a different field, but it's somewhat the same because I'd be teaching/helping people in regards to nutrition and health, which is a passion of mine. Spending more money on education also scares me, but I just know in my heart that I won't be in education (as a classroom teacher) for long enough to justify getting a M.Ed. and I know if I'm going to spend money on more education, it should be towards something that will have a better return. In my heart, I know that I'll still be in the education field, but in a different capacity - educating those about their nutrition and health. That's the script I've been composing and plan on using when my family and friends question me about going back to school to get a second B.S.. Ha! My new plans aren't set in stone, but I know times ticking.

    I'm sure you feel lost. I feel lost. I think everybody that isn't able to work in the field their degree is for feels lost at first until they find something else that feels like home. I've had to do some serious soul searching lately about what direction I want to go.

    I know you said you can't pursue another degree, but what can you do to gain more knowledge and skills in a certain field you're interested in? Could you attend a technical college for a couple evening/weekend courses for a semester?

    What else are you drawn to doing? Start there and see what your options are for getting a foot in the field.
     
  5. Bseballchick

    Bseballchick Rookie

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    Aug 28, 2009

    I've thought about going into social services because I like helping people. It wouldn't be too far away from what I do now. Working to help kids/families, being a case manager or something to that effect. However, I don't know what degree or courses I'd need. I also don't know what the job prospects are in that field. I'd really like to do something where I can use my teaching experience and experience working with families. I had heard about home-hospital teachers and figured that would be perfect. However, I don't know where to start or where to find those jobs!
    I'm also pretty interested in Human Resources, but found out last time I was unemployed that unless you have a business degree or experience, they don't want you.
    It's pretty frustrating. As for the unemployment, I filled out something online. Not sure if I'll get it or not. I've never done this before. Last time I just lived off my savings, but this time, I'm worried that I'll run out of money before I find something.
    Glad to hear I'm not the only one with these issues. Sometimes you can feel very alone. Thanks for the support!
     
  6. Kangaroo22

    Kangaroo22 Virtuoso

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    Aug 28, 2009

    Honestly right now I have no clue what I'm going to do this year. I could sub and stay at my part-time job and continue to live at home, which I know is the best option if I want to find a teaching job next year. But I really don't know if next year I'll have any more luck finding a position and really don't know how long I want to wait and hold off on starting a new path if I never find anything. It just seems like it would be easy to keep on saying that I'll give it just one more year to find a teaching job.

    I also really want to be back on my own again and at my age (24) I feel like I "should" be out on my own. My mother is also pressuring me to give subbing another year, but I really don't want to wait around for years for a dream that may never come to fruition. I am probably going to try to go full time at my grocery store job and work my way up to management if I don't decide to give it another year. Right now it is just so tough to find any kind of entry level employment in any field. I'm sorry to not be of any help to you, but I just wanted to let you know that you are not alone.
     
  7. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Fanatic

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    Aug 28, 2009

    This describes me exactly this past year. Unfortunately, I have no choice but to continue working until I find something else. I have certification in another area so I am hoping I won't have to stay in special ed forever. Being burned out is not fun. I am also thinking of going back to school soon. I hope you find something that suits you!
     
  8. Bseballchick

    Bseballchick Rookie

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    Jessica-Those are my feelings exactly. I should/definitely NEED to be back out on my own. I also do not want to get stuck in the "just one more year", pattern. Out here, the districts are telling people that next year's layoffs and budget cuts are going to be even worse than this year! So, I really have no hope that things will get better. I can't imagine waiting years and years for a teaching job that may never come about. Sadly, I think that it's time for me to move on. However, with the economy being what it is, you are right about finding entry level jobs. My chances are probably slim to none. So, with all that being said, what are my options??!! I'm educated-2 classes away from my masters, and for what?? To not be able to get a good job doing anything??!! It's just so maddening! If I were you, and had a college degree with a job that could lead to management, I'd totally do it! You are fortunate to have something. I fear that I won't even be able to get a retail job! In college, I worked retail and when I left because I was getting ready to graduate, my manager asked me to reconsider and told me I could work up to management in only a couple of years! Now, I think if I had only done that, how different my life would be. Fast forward 9 years, and I'd do anything for an entry-level position that could lead to something bigger!
    Anyway, thanks for sharing. I appreciate it!
     
  9. Blue

    Blue Aficionado

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    Aug 28, 2009

    How about a tec school for health care options. My daughter explored going into a program that was a few months long, to get training to be a medical assistant.
     
  10. megawinn

    megawinn Rookie

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    Aug 29, 2009

    Sorry to hear about your troubles. I am in the same jobless situation. One thing that you could consider is Dental Assisting. I worked my way through college as a dental assistant. It's not a glamorous job but it pays fairly well depending on the location and type of dentistry. The hours are great. Also some dentists can offer benefits and will work with your schedule if you decide to go into Dental Hygiene, which is a two year associates degree and pays about $35 to $40 an hour. Also, with a degree in Education, you will become certified to teach Dental Hygiene at the university level. I did not go to school to become a dental assistant but I found a willing and patient doctor who trained me. It's not as great as a teaching job but it's a steady income. Good luck!
     
  11. Bseballchick

    Bseballchick Rookie

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    Megawinn-Thanks for the advice, but no way!! I could never work in the medical field in any way, shape or form! Just not for me!

    I'm actually thinking of making an appointment with a career counselor at the university I got my credential from. I just feel so lost, and feel like I need some guidance as to what I can do. Has anyone ever tried going to one of these? If so, did it help? I'm pretty much desperate right now! I've been thinking about getting a Library Services Credential, or checking into a Masters in Social Work.
    If I go back to school, I'll still need a job and a decent income, so then I'm back at square one: who will hire me??
    Yikes, this is the worst feeling!
     
  12. emmakate218

    emmakate218 Connoisseur

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    Bseballchick, you're up late...just like me. :) Another late night of wondering about the future and researching my options.

    I didn't mention in my first post, but I'm living at home with my father and if I end up returning to school, I will definitely continue to live at home because that would be the only option! As painful as it is at times, I am grateful. If you're able to live with family, I really encourage you to "take advantage" while you're pursuing other options. It won't be forever and there will come a time that you have to be reminded how you lived with family for an extended period of time. I can't wait for that day. :) Also, I'm not married either so I have no husband to support me. I plan to work "whatever" job I'm able to find while I'm back at school. I will be living at home, but paying bills...student loans and all. I will basically be a poor broke college student again, but I'm a poor broke out of work teacher now so there won't be much difference!

    I think it's important to remember that going back to school and pursuing another degree doesn't take away the fact that you're a certified teacher. If you go back to school, you'll always have teaching to fall back on if you decide to take a break from going back to school, if it's too difficult to manage financially, or if you end not being able to find something right away in your new field after graduation.

    I've also been asking myself, "Am I wanting to go back to school just because it's tough to find a teaching position at the moment and I'm panicking? Or is this truly an opportunity to pursue another passion of mine that will end up leading me into a different career that I may enjoy more?" I think my heart is leading me on this one and I want to follow it.

    I think meeting with a career counselor sounds like a great opportunity! My alma mater is three hours away so that's not an option for me, but I definitely would visit if it were closer. When I started feeling lost this past spring, I started looking at what options my local community college provides.

    As far as finances, you have to ask yourself what you're willing to sacrifice. Are you willing to sacrifice living with family so you can spend another two or so years getting more education? Two or so years sounds scary...but it would go by so fast since you'd be in school and working.

    I feel lost too and there's lots to figure out. :eek:
     
  13. Bseballchick

    Bseballchick Rookie

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    Emmakate-Yes, I was up late like I am every night! My mind just goes and goes and I can't stop thinking about the future and what I'm going to do! Like you, I am fortunate to have family to live with. I am beyond thankful. Although it does a number on my self-esteem and it's hard to tell people that I still live at home! My main concerns are how to pay my bills-student loans, car, credit cards, etc. I think I'm getting an ulcer thinking about that stuff.
    What also worries me is the finding a job doing "whatever" while I go back to school. That's easier said than done! I had trouble finding even min. wage type jobs before because of my history and experience. They don't want to hire me because I'm WAY overqualified. It's kind of unbelievable to me that I'm a professional with a degree and almost a masters, and no one will hire me!
    You also mentioned going back to teaching if I wanted a break or changed my mind. Can't do that either, since there aren't any jobs!! This next school year is going to be even worse. Here in CA, they are warning teachers now that more layoffs are coming and next year will probably be worse than this one. The sub pools are full too.

    Anyway, I will meet with the career counselor and see what advice I can get. I just think the state of education is a mess, and I have heard people on this board say they've been looking for years...
    I can't even imagine that! I need to move on and find something that I have an interest in, that can hopefully lead to something steady. In the meantime, I feel ashamed and like a total failure. It's really hard to go places with family and friends and when they ask about things tell them-Yes, I'm still unemployed and no, there are no prospects. They don't get it. People figure if you got a college degree and were in school forever, how you wouldn't be able to find something! It's really hard on my self-esteem and I've been very depressed. Like you said, I'm lost and there is LOTS to figure out!
    Thanks for the support and knowing I'm not alone!
     
  14. Carmen13

    Carmen13 Groupie

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    Bseballchick, don't feel like a failure! The hiring market is really bad right now, and people with college degrees are no exception when it comes down to getting a job. And it's no shame living with your parents until you can afford to rent (that is, if you have supporting parents). I did that and I don't regret it.
    Concerning jobs besides teaching, I would look into case manager - I think you are qualified for that. Also, have you considered working in a school or facility for kids/adults with special needs?
     
  15. HeatherY

    HeatherY Habitué

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    Aug 29, 2009

    I can also relate, although I have never been able to enter the teaching field- not yet anyway- due to factors beyond my control. I do substitute, but I am also married and we do not need a second income, it is just nice to have. I thought I would be content with "just a job" but what I really want is a career in teaching and for the foreseeable future, that just isn't happening. My husband's career rules our household right now. I am okay with that, but so frustrated as to where that leaves me sometimes.

    Anyway, I have been thinking about getting a masters in library science. I really love books and I think this could be a way to work with children and people, but without the isolation of a contained classroom. Unfortunately, it is also a field that is hard to get a job in, and like you, I am not sure if I want to invest money in education for another failed career. I am looking into online programs and funding, but at a snails pace, so we will see about that. I did some volunteer work in a library and I loved it, but I don't feel comfortable doing that at my present location (my library here is not friendly), so I am not really sure where that leaves me.

    So not sure if that helps, but no one else had mentioned library.... I know you are in a more dire situation that I am, but I think we all know the feeling of despair that comes with not being able to get a job. Good luck and I hope you figure it out soon.
     
  16. Kangaroo22

    Kangaroo22 Virtuoso

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    Bseballchick--I think meeting with a career counselor at your college is a great idea. Maybe they'll be able to tell you options that you are unaware of or use connections that the college may have to get you an entry-level position somewhere. Good luck! Make sure to post here and keep us updated.
     
  17. Jlyn07

    Jlyn07 Comrade

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    Aug 29, 2009

    I really think I want to get another master's in order to be a speech pathologist. However, since I have none of the background courses and there is only one (very expensive) college around here to get it in I need to wait until I've paid off some of my student loans.
     
  18. nasimi77

    nasimi77 Groupie

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    Aug 30, 2009

    This is great to find this thread because I am totally going through the same thing! However, my dilema is I'm 42. I'm very young for my age, also single. I am considering another career for the same reason, but sometimes I wonder if I should because I already have school loans I can't pay back from my teaching credential. Yet, the job situation is so bad here in California. I have also taught before, so it's not like I've never had my own classroom. I'm considering either nursing (my late granny was an RN) or even paralegal work. I tend to lean more towards RN because there is such a big need in the medical field. I was reading though that a lot of places prefer that you have your 4 year degree in nursing vs. just a two year program. There is also something called Occupational Therapy Assistant's that's supposed to be in big need right now. I've got a friend who is an occupational therapist and said it's a great job for someone who used to teach, because you still get the chance to use your creative techniques, and it totally incorporates teaching. There's a 2 year program at a local junior college near me. They are having an orientation coming up in a couple of weeks and I'm seriously considering going. I'm feeling like others have said, that perhaps there's another career out there that I would enjoy even more than teaching at this point. I'm just trying to consider other options, like so many of us are!
     
  19. Beverly

    Beverly Comrade

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    Aug 30, 2009

    Ladies, please don't let living with your parents affect your self esteem. I think it's VERY common these days for people 21-30 to live with their parents. I sympathize with everything you have been saying. I'm married, but I feel like I've done a great dis-service to my husband because it's almost time to pay back my college loans- all $40,000 of them... and I am only making about $9,000 a year. I don't want to give up on teaching and am willing to go back and add endorsements or whatever is necessary, but there's just no way that I can afford it.

    Megawinn- I'm curious about dental assisting. Obviously, I probably won't be able to take more classes for an associates any time soon.. but was it a friend or family member who got you started? Did you have any other experience in a healthcare setting? What's the process for becoming certified to teach dental hygiene?
     
  20. Bseballchick

    Bseballchick Rookie

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    Nasimi-I'm in CA and feeling like things are utterly hopeless. Like you, I've had my own classroom before. I taught for 6 years, left to try something new (with no success), went back last year and was VERY lucky to find something, but it was only a temp 1 year contract. Now, I'm unemployed again and feeling like teaching has really burned me. I've given so many years, worked so hard, and am in a TON of debt, for what?? I've never heard of a professional career, where you go to so much school, do so much training, and still can't find something in your field! It's insane. I too have been thinking about going into OT and also Speech Therapy. Since I teach Special Ed., I'm trying to find something at least somewhat in my field. The problem is that I owe so much now in student loans, that I don't think I can afford to go back for 2 years or so that it would take for one of these fields. I'll end up owing like $50,000! I'll never be out of debt! I also have bills to pay and need an income/benefits, now! I worry that I'm also too old to go back to school. I'm in my mid-thirties, and really hoped/thought I was done with school, save for finishing up my Masters. I was hoping that I could find a job with my current degree. But, that's proven to be almost totally impossible. I've heard about Home-Hospital teachers, and am trying to look into that, but not finding much info. All I know for sure is that there are NO jobs her in So. Cal, and it's only going to get worse. They are closing 3 schools in my old district, and already telling people that there are lots more layoffs to come this year. So, to try to hold out until next year, would be silly. At least for me. I have to be realistic. The only problem is I'm so lost and confused and with every day I'm unemployed, it just gets worse. I'm hoping the career counselor can give me some helpful info.
    Thanks for sharing, and I'm glad to know I'm not alone! By the way, what school is the OT program you're referring to? Thanks!
     
  21. amaryllis

    amaryllis Rookie

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    Aug 31, 2009

    Bseballchick,

    I'm in CA too, and while I don't have much more advice to offer than what others have in the thread, I really understand how you feel. My original goal was to teach University-level English and I'm now turning my attention to teaching private high school (a few years off still). It's important to remember that California's employment problems are absolutely not a reflection of you, your qualifications, or even teaching, per se: they are endemic to ALL sectors of the California work force. Very few fields are secure anymore. We have one of the two highest unemployment rates in the country, if I recall. According to McClatchy (?), we aren't due to feel economic recovery until 2013 here. That's slower than the rest of the country.

    Of course, that doesn't help you pragmatically, now does it?

    But at least if you can keep perspective and remember that doctors, lawyers, and tons of other people in so-called safe professions are also struggling to find basic work, maybe it will help you feel less overwhelmed by it.

    Thus said, I have been extremely hesitant to go into education right now, even at a lower and less-competitive level than a Ph.D. program to become a Professor, because of the kinds of concerns you've raised. I'm going through various programs and making yet more sacrifices, probably burdening my husband more than he deserves, not to mention my family. While getting my BA, I very much stayed in a horrible relationship out of fear of losing that opportunity (the BA, not the relationship: sorry if that sounds callous).

    Some things you might consider are just little evening classes toward getting a clerical-type certificate. I'd done assorted clerical work in the past, and having taken some community college courses helped out to get jobs as well as network. The pay is admittedly pretty low, but there's usually room for growth. I was an entry-level clerical gal when I was 18 and then always went back to that when times were lean. Over time, I wound up as a manager for a large company that folded. From there, I was offered an opportunity to co-own a company. I was really glad I'd taken those clerical courses...they were at night and they cost perhaps $300 per.

    I have a bunch of very random backup jobs that make no real sense, but always so terrified of being unemployed.

    Oh, and there's always administrative positions for private schools. I've nearly taken two jobs this year as an executive director. My grandmother had shifted back and forth between teaching, being a principal, and then working for the school board, so keep an open mind there.

    Lastly, I looked into Library Science too. Decided against it because I cannot move to get a job in the long run, and the jobs are fairly spotty. But I did a huge amount of comparative research about various schools and found San Jose State had some of the lowest rates, was totally online, and might be worth looking into. You can also google Librarian Forums...there's some sage advice out there!

    We're all feeling it in California: teachers and the rest of the public. It will improve, but right now just remembering that the state is failing and not you bring you some peace of mind. Doesn't help much with a job, but peace of mind is nice. And we really are all in it together.

    Best of luck.
     

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