Journalist ponders life outside this sinking industry
April 12, 2010 11:07 PM Subscribe
I want to be a corporate litigator. Or a government economist. Or a geophysicist. Or corporate finance guru. Or something. Please held this 32-year-old journalist explore possible second career options.
It's time for a change. I want to find a new career -- and not as a copywriter or pr flack, which would be fairly easy.
In a perfect world, I'd like to make at least $40k, adjusted up to account for new student loans I may need to take on. And in a really, really perfect world, I'd like to stay in Portland, Ore.
Here's what I like about my job:
* I'm constantly learning new things.
* I get to do a lot of research, number crunching and database querying, and to analyse and draw conclusions, and then to share what I've learned.
* I'm not tied to my desk all day. (Just most of the day.)
* I'm don't directly facilitate consumerism. (I don't want to sell anything, buy anything, or process anything as a career.)
* I have a fair amount of autonomy in how I work.
* It's competitive.
The jobs I find myself daydreaming about seem to all share these traits. They're also held by people I've gotten to know and appreciate through my current job. But these jobs all seem to have pretty major drawbacks, too.
Corporate litigators work 80 hours a week, and competition for these positions is fierce. Geophysicists need PhDs, and I was an English major - I'd have eight-plus years of training to even get started. The folks with the best corporate finance jobs either spent a decade of ladder-climbing drudgery, or took on six-figure debt at top-ranked MBA programs. Economist gigs seem to have fewer drawbacks, though I'd at least need to get an MA/MS, and there aren't a ton of openings, from what I can tell.
How can I stop equivocating and actually start pursuing some new path? And what career options might I be overlooking? Please advise.