I'm pretty sure I'm unemployable. Hope me?
March 13, 2015 9:33 AM   Subscribe

I'm so incredibly tired of using up questions on this topic, but I need a fill-up on motivation and ideas about where to go from here. You'll know from seeing previous questions of mine that I've been looking for my first job for the better part of two years now. I've received wonderful advice each and every time, but I never really started putting it to good use until about six months ago ( depression, ADD, etc etc). The problem? It's been six. damn. months. and I haven't gotten so much as a call or an email back. From anywhere. What am I doing wrong, what reasons are there to keep trying, and how do I keep myself from going insane when it feels like all my resumes, cover letters and emails end up being sucked into a black hole?

Quick stats:
1) I graduated in May of 2013 with a BA in Psychology, after taking way too long (almost six years) to finish school, and leaving with a 2.7 GPA ( and I only managed that by dropping or taking many courses pass/fail). I had been on the dean's list at a major state university in NY but left with my transcript in tatters, no substantive relationships with any of my professors and no extracurricular experience that I could say I stayed with for more than two weeks.
2) I've never held a job, nor done much of anything outside of school, really. I'm good at taking tests. Period.
3) I don't feel like I have the energy, initiative or sense of vision to do something creative even though I'm a decent writer, nor the knack for analytical pursuits necessary to do something in the sciences / anything technical, even though I enjoy science on a superficial level.
4) I have cerebral palsy, and a pretty severe stutter, though I'm actively working on the latter.

Things I've tried so far:
- Days and days of resume blitzing on Indeed, LinkedIn, Craigslist, JobScore, CareerBuilder, Idealist and VolunteerMatch. So exhausting.
- Going to job fairs for people with disabilities
-Emailing professors at different institutions about joining their labs on a volunteer basis. They either have no room or want more experience than I have ( barely anything beyond a tiny project I helped an oncologist cousin of mine proofread).
- Speaking with a vocational rehab counselor. They weren't of much help.
-Seeing a therapist
-Redoing my resume at least 10 times. A lot of it is a stretch, and I can't do much more with it.
- Taking the NYS Civil Service exam ( I scored 100 and got exactly one canvass letter. No reply after I sent in my resume).

I really can't sit at home and deal with any more rejection. I'll probably always have low-grade depression and each one saps so much of what little energy I have.

Beyond sending out well written, passionate cover letters and concise, one-page resumes with keywords, what do I do when it seems I'm not even qualified to sort mail for the federal government or to bag groceries ( Thanks, Trader Joes) , let alone do anything else?
posted by marsbar77 to Work & Money (38 answers total) 13 users marked this as a favorite
Sign up with a temp agency and tell them you're 100% open to a temp to perm hire.

You don't really get much choice, but at least you're working.
posted by phunniemee at 9:39 AM on March 13, 2015 [6 favorites]

Response by poster: I forgot to add temp agencies under the list of things I've tried with no resultant dice. Sigh.
posted by marsbar77 at 9:46 AM on March 13, 2015

Have you explored options within retail and food service? If you want to limit your interaction with the public, you can always work back-of-the-house (kitchen) jobs in a restaurant, or do some warehouse work. At this point, it seems like any job at all would be an improvement on staying home. And would probably boost your morale + confidence and open up other opportunities.
posted by witchen at 9:51 AM on March 13, 2015 [2 favorites]

What kind of jobs are you applying for and are you willing to post a copy of your CV and the text of your cover letter with identifying details blacked out on Imgur or something?
posted by DarlingBri at 9:51 AM on March 13, 2015

Response by poster: Not to threadsit...last peep from me, I hope: Retail and foodservice don't want me. Lack of experience plus the physical handicap means I'm not of much use to them. I tried Trader Joe's, Panera, Target, Cosi and TJMaxx. All seemingly progressive stores.
Also, DarlingBri: do you mean to post it on Imgur and then here, or just as an open thing on Imgur?
Applied to/ to be a:
Lab assistant, research aide, volunteer writer for social justice organizations, crew member at a number of food and retail outfits, blogger, a number of clerk-type positions at different government agencies, clerical assistant, etc, etc.
posted by marsbar77 at 9:59 AM on March 13, 2015

Best answer: There is an excellent online training called SSI/SSDI Access, Outreach and Recovery (SOAR), and the organization also has webinars, and job postings.

One of the great aspects of this training is that there is a writing assignment that is reviewed for approval, so the certification (and regular participation in the webinars) can be serious additions to your resume and experience. While I tend to be wary of the costs involved in the usual 'when in doubt, go back to school,' this is a free, self-directed training that can validate your skills and serve as a confidence booster.
posted by Little Dawn at 10:02 AM on March 13, 2015 [3 favorites]

What about networking? Not necessarily in the "pressing the flesh" at a networking function sense, but in spreading the word around to family and friends that you are looking for a job?

So much of what you describe is Internet-based and it's easy to overlook someone in cyberspace because no one is a person - you are just words on a screen in a long list of others who are just words on a screen. But asking people you know about where they work, is their company actively hiring, do they know anyone looking for someone with your qualifications, etc. can get you in the door somewhere. All of my jobs I heard about through friends of my family. It didn't get me the jobs, but it got me the interviews that got me the jobs.
posted by cecic at 10:04 AM on March 13, 2015 [3 favorites]

You need to try ALL the retail and food service places. Frankly, with no job or volunteer experience whatsoever, a resume is going to be pretty pointless. Stick to places with paper applications, places with a minimum of requirement, and apply to ALL OF THEM. I am not disabled but when I was in college looking for retail/service/etc low-level jobs it was absolutely normal to apply to 20 or 30 in order to get one job.
posted by celtalitha at 10:04 AM on March 13, 2015 [3 favorites]

Response by poster: Argh, last one. Promise. Point taken about retail, but re: networking within friends and family. I've tried. They (family especially) don't take me seriously, possibly because they've always seen me as disabled first, productive citizen second, and don't try very hard at all to put out feelers for me.
Just to preempt what I'm sure will be many other well-meaning suggestions along the same vein: I really have tried Everything. Figured out the color of my parachute 1000x over, so to speak. I really just don't understand anything at this point. Okay, closing my browser now so I don't get tempted to butt in again.
posted by marsbar77 at 10:12 AM on March 13, 2015

You need work experience, really any kind of work experience. It seems like you have some way of feeding/housing yourself while you're unemployed, so why not use this time to build work experience by volunteering? I'm talking a full-time (or close) volunteer gig. At the beginning, you might be answering the phones or doing whatever super-basic tasks they need done. But I promise you, if you start working 20+ hours/week for an organization, and prove yourself to be reliable, you'll start to get more meaningful things to do and begin to build a resume.
posted by lunasol at 10:21 AM on March 13, 2015 [6 favorites]

Best answer: Six months isn't all that long in this economy, especially with no experience. Volunteering is a good idea for a lot of reasons: experience you can document, people to use as references, something to make your resume more distinctive, networking - do not underestimate the value of that final item.

Volunteering creates a very strong social bond, even with people you may not even personally know, but if they identify with Volunteer Org and you are a volunteer there, they're going to be willing to give you a shot or take a few minutes to make a phone call for you, or they're going to say hey, come on down to the store and I'll introduce you to the manager.

I don't think you're doing anything wrong. It's just that you're probably going to have to find a way to make yourself distinctive to snag one of these very competitive jobs, and the best way to do that is via actual human connection. It's just how human brains work - if I have a job that doesn't require a special skill and 100 resumes for it that all look roughly alike, and someone I know emails me #101 saying "hey, this person's been packing bags at the food bank with me for a few months and they are struggling to find an entry level job, they seem nice and do a good job with the bags" that person is now the applicant I have the most connection to.
posted by Lyn Never at 10:33 AM on March 13, 2015 [6 favorites]

As a follow up to the training I suggested - you have skills and experience that are valuable to a wide variety of organizations, and I really want to emphasize that.

I'm concerned about the current focus of your work search, because it seems like there is a serious risk of increasing your depression and feelings of alienation. Finding work and connecting with an advocacy organization may really help you recognize the extraordinary value that you have to offer. You have the degree, and you have significant experience with how difficult it can be to find entry-level work, so especially with some additional training, you have serious potential to find fulfilling work that can do a lot of good for a lot of people.

You are also entitled to reasonable accommodations, and my expectation is that advocacy organizations will be more than ready to provide what you need to be a successful employee. You really do seem like an excellent candidate for social services work, so I encourage you to explore those opportunities.
posted by Little Dawn at 10:35 AM on March 13, 2015 [1 favorite]

Best answer: First off, your situation stinks, and I'm sorry you're having so much trouble.

I do agree with other posters that your skimpy resume is hurting you more than it is helping you. Somethings I have seen work for other people in your situation:

Show up to the job that is hiring - dressed and ready to work that day. Be polite, wait in reception or whatever, but just camp out and wait for the interviewer to see you. This one can be hard to pull off, and you have to be willing to leave if they kick you out, but you can politely offer to wait. This method also works a lot better for jobs without a distinct corporate structure, and less-desired jobs - places where the average worker is a bit of a slacker and hard work will make you stand out. This method also has a high failure rate, so you'd have to be willing to steel yourself for that. The specific job I saw this work well for was a front-desk type position at a construction company.

I'm very surprised that all of your offers to work for free are being shut down. Are you only trying to get into highly desired positions, like applying to work for a professor when you are not a student? There are a lot of volunteer positions that really need a warm body to show up and do things like hand out fliers or man the front desk. Expand your sights for volunteer work, as it will help you get real-world experience with working cultural expectations.

I'd also look into volunteering to help run the job fairs you have been going to. That will put you in direct contact with employers and make you stand out.
posted by fermezporte at 10:38 AM on March 13, 2015

Best answer: I apologize if this is over-reaching, but such a bleak attitude is surely not helping, either--especially if employers are picking up on the vibe of either a) desperation or b) "I can't get anything better, so ho hum, I guess I'll slog it out here for a while."

Something I found helpful during an impossible-seeming time was a quotation from some book, I can't remember what, but it was this: You need to re-write your contract with reality. Forget what you know. Forget what you think you know. Tell yourself new stories about yourself. Change your approach in a radical way. Be the person they want to hire--imagine who that might be and channel his energy, outlook, ideas, whatever. You're still young and there are SO many possibilities. Really.
posted by witchen at 10:43 AM on March 13, 2015 [14 favorites]

Have you talked with someone at United Cerebral Palsy? They say on their website they offer employment assistance.
posted by cecic at 10:51 AM on March 13, 2015 [2 favorites]

Have tried reaching out to your network? A good resume, applying to the right sorts of jobs, following up and being persistent, etc. are all important, but make sure all your friends and acquaintances know you're looking. Re-connect with acquaintances and colleagues for coffee or whatever to bring them back into your network and to make sure they know you are looking. Even though applying to jobs has worked for me before, every job I've ever accepted has been a word-of-mouth situation where someone recommended me to a place, or someone recommended a place to me. So make sure you're doing that end of it as much as you are looking at job boards and writing cover letters. Aside from this helping put you on people's radars when they hear of jobs, it could also help with your depression a little bit to get out of the house and socialize a bit, or even if you do it through email, feeling connected to people may be good for you.

Also, it's easier to get a job when you have. Two years out of the work force looks a bit sketchy. You should try to get a job -- any job -- that requires you to get out of bed in the morning and go work somewhere for money.
posted by AppleTurnover at 10:53 AM on March 13, 2015

Best answer: I'd try looking for an unpaid internship. It's like volunteering (it basically is volunteering) but with a more professional spin. Instead of getting a reference who can say "Chris showed up on time to walk the dogs and was cheerful about walking the dogs and scooping their poop," you can work towards a reference who can say "Chris was a bright and smart colleague who quickly completed assigned tasks and asked for more."

Identify something that you can learn for free and work towards learning it. Download Duolingo and start learning a new language. Check out the classes on Khan Academy. Learning something will help boost your self-esteem and make you more interesting at job interviews ("In addition to my current internship/volunteer work, I have been teaching myself German. It's something that interests me and I love learning new things.").

Also, if you like writing, I'd start a blog today. Write about things that you would want to share with an employer - again, it doesn't have to be fancy but you can write stuff like, I saw this article related to [a field that interests you] and thought it was really interesting because [reasons]. You can also write about your experiences in your as a volunteer and/or unpaid intern and learning the thing you decided to teach yourself. If you can tie these things together, it will seem like a really great blog (interested in art history? look for articles on art history to write about, volunteer or intern at a local museum, and find a class online about art history) but even if not, these things will all make you seem like a more interesting person and help you with your self esteem, which will make you more appealing in interviews.

I know being unemployed sucks but those are all some things you can try that will make you feel better about yourself and potentially improve your situation. Best wishes - I'm sending good vibes your way.
posted by kat518 at 11:03 AM on March 13, 2015 [3 favorites]

How about doing something like AmeriCorps? You get experience and a small living stipend and there were definitely disabled people doing AmeriCorps and VISTA gigs while I was in.
posted by youcancallmeal at 11:07 AM on March 13, 2015 [3 favorites]

My advice is to start thinking of ways to earn income by yourself.

You could do the Amazon Mechanical Turk thing, if you do it right you can eke out minimum wage (since you're good at test taking). There's also essay writing services (write essays for lazy students for a fee) since you're good at writing. A few people I know have patreon accounts and are able to get a small monthly income from writing blog pieces (they typically have a large following on twitter/social media to leverage, however)
posted by hellojed at 12:09 PM on March 13, 2015 [2 favorites]

Best answer: It's not you, it's the economy. And the economy is slowly getting better. Check out the recent decline in the unemployment rate. So hang in there, you've got the wind at your back.
posted by mono blanco at 12:10 PM on March 13, 2015

Also, DarlingBri: do you mean to post it on Imgur and then here, or just as an open thing on Imgur?

Post on Imgur or any other file sharing whatever, so people can see them. You are asking for tangle feedback and actions, based on a theoretical CV and cover letter. If you want real feedback, provide the tangible.
posted by DarlingBri at 12:33 PM on March 13, 2015

*tangible [sorry]
posted by DarlingBri at 12:44 PM on March 13, 2015

Best answer: I would consider strongly focusing on your writing. More written content is being payed for now than ever before in human history, even if the pay on a lot of it is kind of shit. And freelance writing is one career where your disabilities will not be an obstacle at all (and even open up new opportunities writing for disability blogs and whatnot).

I make a living as a freelance writer and, while I have been able to land and hold several "real" jobs in my life, I also struggle with ADD and lack of motivation. One thing that is fantastic about freelance writing is that I can do the job on my own schedule and I get paid by the word. So not only does nobody give me shit if I take three hours off to stare at the trees in the middle of the day, I don't even feel guilty about it.

Now, it's difficult or impossible to just land a "pays the bills" freelance writing job out of nowhere, so the most important thing is to build up a portfolio. There are no shortage of blogs and content platforms that will pay just about anybody $3 to $5 per article. Hook up with a few and write pieces that are far better than they need to be. You'll be working your ass off for $15 a day, but what else are you doing with your time right now?

Keep track of the pieces you are most proud of and build a portfolio so you can start applying to the media companies that pay real money. Pitch articles to websites big and small (stay away from print magazines when you are just starting out probably, they are far harder to break into).

Now, just an aside here, you say that you lack the initiative and vision to complete a major creative work. This is the cure for that. Almost everything that I am contracted to write is less than 1,000 words long and, while I try to put my best into each piece, I don't need to feel that this particular informational article on solar power is going to be my legacy. Get used to writing a few thousand words a day as simple labour and suddenly the idea of writing a 100,000 word novel is a lot less daunting.

Maybe writing will turn out to be your career, maybe not. But it's something you can start getting paid for today and it will never look bad on a resume. And the potential is definitely there to make some money. I usually get paid about 50 cents a word and can easily churn out two 500 word articles a day (if only I could get that volume of work day in and day out), and I'm nowhere near the top of the potential payscale.

By all means, keep sending out resumes, but write as well. If nothing else, you will not feel like you have been wasting your time.
posted by 256 at 1:09 PM on March 13, 2015 [6 favorites]

Response by poster: Thanks for the great advice so far, everyone. I've done this before, but I guess there's little harm in posting an updated resume for anyone that might be curious about what I have to work with here:
1) My current default resume
2) A somewhat older version
3) One of my cover letters
256: Would you have any specific recommendations for sites I can get started doing article-writing with?
Thanks, green! You're always so good to me.
posted by marsbar77 at 1:27 PM on March 13, 2015 [1 favorite]

Best answer: I asked a very similar question just a few weeks ago, right down to the defeated and hopeless tone. Guess what? I'm employed now. Part-time, but likely full in a couple months. If I did it, you can do it. You can. You can get a job. You are employable. You will get hired. You just have to keep going. While we have different backgrounds, please don't twist that to mean you're actually, secretly unemployable and I am wrong. I am not. You will get hired.

It is really tough as a new grad. Companies always want a ton of experience, because they can usually get it. But guess what? You have a BA! A bench-mark that you can sail right over -- so many employers want someone with a BA, and you've got one. It doesn't matter you took six years to finish. It doesn't matter you took classes pass/fail. Your GPA doesn't matter. Those facts are irrelevant to employers, and you're beating yourself up for nothing. You have a BA! Yay! You're still saying you're unemployable: not true. I do NOT have a BA. I got a job. You can, too.

Please anonymize your resume, and put it on Imgur. I did, and boy oh boy did I completely, totally redo my resume. After I had re-written it a million and three times. When I thought I couldn't change it in any way, Metafilter gave me insight to totally re-write it, and now it is ready for the Museum of Resumes. Really. So post yours, because we all want to give you feedback.

In the meantime, this is the best advice I can give you without knowing specifics. You need to tailor your resume and your cover letter to every job you apply for. Yup. It's exhausting and horrible. But it matters. With little work experience, your resume might be fixed, but your cover letter is not. When you read a job description make two lists. What are the TOP THREE responsibilities of this position? and What are the TOP THREE qualities they want in the person they hire? Then in your cover letter you need to SHOW that you can DO those top three things, because you HAVE those three qualities. You need to SHOW as much as you can, not just TELL. School is fair game - if they're looking for someone who can do highly detailed and organized work, explain how your research methodologies depended on strict accuracy of data. Or Whatever. Employers want a cover letter that was written for THEM. Show you know something about the company in your closing sentence. They have a problem to solve, show them that you can fix their problem. You are a good writer!! You have a leg up over so many people, because most people are terrible writers!

Additionally, I know you must be feeling very desperate, but please begin thinking of what you WANT to do. if you scatter shot resumes and cover letters to gas stations, doctors, coal mines, and space stations, your resume and cover letter will never get honed the way they will when you pick an industry and really start cracking into it. But! you say, how can I even pick an industry? You have to start somewhere. What do you want to do all day? Work alone? Work with people? Work in education? in logistics? In retail? With numbers? With ideas? Are you despairing that even temp agencies didn't want you? Guess what? ME TOO. No one wanted me to even stuff envelopes. I got a job, and you will, too.

Finally, are you volunteering somewhere? Get out of the house. Volunteer. There are thousands of non-profits that run on volunteer power in every color imaginable. Guess what? Volunteering goes on your resume.

Please post a resume and a cover letter on here. We will be kind and we will be helpful.

Please keep your chin up. You're doing great, and you are SO MUCH MORE than your job search or your unemployment.

and on non-preview, there's your resume. Thanks!
posted by missmary6 at 1:35 PM on March 13, 2015 [13 favorites]

Response by poster: You're so very kind, missmary!
The third link I posted might be broken... try here
posted by marsbar77 at 1:38 PM on March 13, 2015 [1 favorite]

Best answer: I see you're applying to jobs on Indeed. I do think people probably do get jobs on Indeed, but when my organization posted job openings on our website, somehow they got picked up by Indeed (we definitely did not submit them) and the quality of resumes we got through Indeed were absolutely horrible. And we got a ton of them -- much more than ones who had applied directly. When I saw a resume submitted through Indeed, I instinctively thought it was going to be bad before I even opened it.

Be sure to directly check the websites for organizations you may be interested in. Also look for tailored job boards for the field you're interested in. Aggregated job websites meant to serve everyone aren't very good, and every job will have tons of people applying for them. Your odds won't be very good on sites like Indeed. You want to look in places that are not served up on the platter of a third-party mainstream site -- try to apply directly whenever you can.
posted by AppleTurnover at 1:49 PM on March 13, 2015 [2 favorites]

As much as we don't want it to be true, there is a strong bias against visibly disabled people when we walk/limp/crutch/roll in the door. That's totally wrong and illegal, but it's there. It's like sunlight or fog. Thankfully some folks are working full-time to eliminate this.

Your job is to focus on getting your next job. Do not let the possibility of discrimination weigh on your shoulders. Assume the adult posture, believe in the future, and if they ask something about your physical capacity, offer to demonstrate it. (While the law says employers must offer reasonable accommodations in hiring as well as employment, practically you may have to prove yourself capable of doing something that you might not be able to do all day every day.)
posted by Jesse the K at 2:03 PM on March 13, 2015 [2 favorites]

I've gotten a few jobs by calling places and offering to intern. If you have some idea what you actually WANT to do someday, interning now will get you some experience and may actually get you hired.

This next part is way too vague, and it didn't end up helping me anyhow, but I felt like I should mention it...

Years ago I was having terrible problems finding a job, and I went to a government agency that was supposed to help people with disabilities find work. (I have osteoarthritis, and while I've always felt like calling myself disabled was too extreme for my situation, apparently I qualified by the government's definition and as I was truly desperate and willing to try anything.)

As I said, it didn't end up helping me. But one of the things they told me was that if somebody did hire me, they would get a tax break for employing a disabled person. If you can hook up with a government agency like that, and your potential employers get a tax break, that could make you a little more attractive as a job-seeker.

It sounds like you are busting your hump, trying to make things happen. That kind of hard work has to pay off eventually. Somebody somewhere will hire you.
posted by Ursula Hitler at 2:07 PM on March 13, 2015 [2 favorites]

TRIlingual. Wow. Have you taken the Court interpreter's exam?

I noticed you disclose your CP in the cover letter. You have no obligation to disclose in advance of being hired. I particularly recommend against disclosing to any medical organization, which have been, in my experience, the least willing to even consider applicants with disabilities.

In general, only disclose disability when it's a plus. If I was applying to an organization connected to any of my disabilities, I would highlight mine as "extensive relevant personal experience" and then go on to briefly discuss related advocacy, writing, fundraising etc.

Many more details on working while disabled at the Job Accommodation Network.
posted by Jesse the K at 2:15 PM on March 13, 2015 [11 favorites]

Federal jobs? I think CP would give you a hiring preference. You would have to move to DC. I see a lot of disabled employees around the Department of Labor.
posted by yarly at 7:14 PM on March 13, 2015

Your cover letter is too long. Check out the T-format cover letter. They're great because they're short, easy to read, and focus attention on the skills you will bring to fulfill their job requirements.
posted by vespabelle at 7:24 PM on March 13, 2015 [3 favorites]

These guys? http://www.ntiathome.org/index.shtm
posted by stormyteal at 8:36 PM on March 13, 2015

It's definitely not you, it's definitely the economy, and it's a terrible time for young people with no experience. What a lot of young people in my area do, after a degree in something like psychology, is top it up with a vocational qualification from a college (or a masters in an applied area). This tends to give them much better luck on the market, especially when the program offers formal industry internships.

(I should say that here, colleges tend to offer programs with fairly narrow, skills-based specializations that are well respected by employers; they're not a "second best" option. If that isn't the case where you are, obviously, do your research (research anyway). Some of these programs (which may be called certificates or diplomas, here) are designed for university graduates, and are accelerated versions of the three-year college diplomas. They're just as useful, though.)

And I agree, your cover letter is a little wordy for contemporary business English. Shoot for concise, plain language (think bulleted lists). The T-format cover letter is great.
posted by cotton dress sock at 9:55 PM on March 13, 2015 [1 favorite]

Also, question - beyond immediate employment, what's your end game? Have you thought about working in public health, maybe getting an MPH? Relevant volunteer work you do now could make a real difference in terms of getting into a program like that. (And a program like that would give you a real profession.)
posted by cotton dress sock at 10:01 PM on March 13, 2015

The top of your resume is also too much wall of text. I'd format it with a trimmed and reworked objective first ("Recent psychology graduate with clinical records and medical editing experience seeking a position as a clinical research coordinator"?), and then some bullet points under the header "Key Skills & Experience" -- something like 1) 4 years experience supporting data intensive projects in academic and medical settings 2) Proficient in editing technical documents and conducting scientific and medical literature reviews 3) Detail-oriented, with experience in fact-checking and reviewing patient medical records 4) Proficient in MS Office suite; additional familiarity with eClinicalWorks EMR, e-Prime and SPSS

Apologies for phone formatting. Those blurbs could be improved still.

I also think your search sounds less directed than your job goals. Your resume is great for a recent grad. Have you familiarized yourself with the job titles for the types of roles you're ideally looking for? Have you looked into professional organizations for people in your desired field? The Association of Clinical Research Professionals looks like it has some good advice on getting entry level work. RAPS (the Regulatory Affairs Professionals Society) may also be worth a look. Any other free certification or training you can do, like the NIH's modules on protecting human subjects, would demonstrate that you're truly focused on this area as a professional goal.

Finally, I'd put the languages back on your resume, too.
posted by deludingmyself at 10:06 PM on March 13, 2015 [2 favorites]

And jumping back a step from my advice on your resume: you are SO employable. Your resume suggests, but does not completely communicate, that you would be a fantastic entry level hire for a clinical research project. What it doesn't communicate real well is the specific job you're looking for - which is a totally common thing in recent grads, but does tend to slow down your job search process. I'm sure the depression and feeling like you have been at this so long that you need to apply for all kinds of jobs, not just the ones you want at this point, aren't helping either. But I would recommend you seek out volunteer work (especially anything with data records or a disease/medical related org), and then refocus your job search on the jobs you really want - and finding them on non-aggregator sites.

MeMail me if you'd like to talk through resume tweaking, finding job listings in clinical research, or targeting your resume mailings so you're less burned out. I've bounced around in many different life science settings and am happy to help you think through where you might fit best & how to go about getting there.
posted by deludingmyself at 10:17 PM on March 13, 2015 [1 favorite]

A suggestion if you're looking for volunteer opportunities - hospice volunteering might line up with your interest in medical care and psychology, will be wheelchair accessible, and might be something that could lead to employment after you get to know the staff. It can be emotionally grueling but I've known some people that found it very rewarding and helping people who are in terminal decline with no family to help them is a great benefit to offer society.
posted by Candleman at 1:07 PM on March 14, 2015

« Older The Sleez Sisters b/w The Fabulous Stains   |   What do you call this academic writing style and... Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.