Interesting thread - I needed it. The NYC metro area is highly competitive. As I face September without a teaching job, I struggle with deep discouragement. I'm an energetic, positive, funny, highly articulate, youthful, and stylish midlife woman who has just earned an MAT and $36 thou of debt. As I am also a trainer of professional actors, I am skilled in Shakespearean performance and have published material for student actors. It has been my dream to lead a club of aspiring actors, directors, and writers of color who would perform in their community. I explain that on my applications, how it will build literacy and character. This, my maturity, great references, and a 3.96 GPA should make me an appealing candidate. I will be subbing to pay off loans however I've decided to make lemonade: I'll be auditioning in NYC again, once a week. Having a stimulating and creative "Plan B" is the best way to survive teacher unemployment. BTW, I sub in a district where the teachers tell me that nepotism and cronyism is rampant. In fact, I overheard one teacher say to another, "....and I even got so-and-so a job here." Interestingly, before leaving to start a family, I had taught in this district when I was in my twenties; I was hired because the supervisor knew my sister. Find your constructive and creative balm, fellow educators. It's tough.