When to start looking for jobs after new degree
May 1, 2011 10:23 AM Subscribe
When coming from extended period at current job (3+ years), when should I start looking for other jobs after getting a second degree? (Library-related)
posted by anonymous to Work & Money (4 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I've been at Job A for over 3 years. Job A doesn't require anything past a high school diploma, but I've taken on projects that are beyond the description out of boredom (and because I wanted to prove myself since this is my first really 'professional' job). Job A is at an extremely well-known East Coast university that looks good on my resume. I've had exceptional ratings on every performance appraisal.
I have a BA, a Master's in Administration, and will be finishing a second Master's degree in library science (no concentration, just general) at the end of December 2011.
Job A has made noises that they'll offer me a better position (full-time hours and a higher pay grade) for years but hasn't really begun to finalize anything until they found out I was getting towards the end of my degree. (They've known about the degree since day 1 and my boss understands that I may leave after finishing it because he knows that my position isn't really enough for me.) There has been nothing definite told to me (either in person or via secondhand sources who have been trying to keep me in the loop as to what is going on) except for being brought up to full-time hours within the next couple of weeks or so, once I get some "official" training.
Obviously, I'd like to stay at Job A, as long as they're willing to offer a higher paygrade (at least $40k, which would be double my current salary) and a professional job title. My boss should know this (although I haven't been quite explicit enough about how much I want them to raise my pay since I felt it was kind of tacky to mention that right when I heard about the bump up to full-time hours) and has communicated this to his boss, who is apparently afraid that I'm going to leave as soon as I finish my degree, which is partly true because I'm tired of Job A repeatedly telling me that they're going to make things better for me and not following through. Job A is very close to my home and I enjoy the atmosphere.
So, the second degree is in library science. (I know, I can hear the 'there's too many of us already' chorus.) Job A is in a library, albeit in a support staff position, so I do have some experience. I've got lots of projects to show my work and even have one publication under my belt (with others currently out for consideration).
I also volunteer at an extremely important big name archive and have been doing that for less than a year, but by the time I finish my degree, I'll have been there for a little over a year. There's a contract that I'll be volunteering at said for a minimum of 2 years. However, the commute to volunteering is 2 hours, one-way (but I only go there once every 2 weeks, so it's tolerable). If I were to get a job at the place where I volunteer (which would likely give me all the things I want but is also extremely unlikely as they rarely have openings for professional staff), I would have to sell my current house and move because I cannot do a 2 hour one-way commute every day. I would also want a much higher salary because moving to be closer to that place would require living in a higher-cost area.
I really want to work in an archive in some fashion, but I know that a lot of the work is almost apprenticeship-based and I lack a lot of experience in that area. I've had projects that are archivist related before and I do have the volunteer gig as well. The extra hours that are supposed to start in a few weeks are also going to be archive-related. My original Job A description has no archive-related parts.
Taking everything into consideration:
(a) How hard should I push at Job A to get the things I want? I'm afraid that if I push too hard, I'm going to look greedy at a time when budgets are tight and they'll just tell me to go elsewhere.
(a1) How long should I give Job A to get off their ass and give me what I'm asking for?
(b) I've been casually looking at various advertised jobs for a few months. When should I start seriously applying to other places? What about going to interviews?
(c) Any other advice? I'm terrible at interviewing (mostly due to lack of practice since I've just kinda randomly fallen into all the jobs I've gotten up to this point) but I hope that having lots of projects/papers (if they do get published)/experience in the field will give me some semblance of an edge over other freshly-degreed candidates.
Throwaway email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Thanks everyone. I'm likely wayyyyyyyy overthinking things, but I need some advice from the hive mind here.