Summer Work & Job Hunting

apple laptop

This summer I have focused on trying to improve my little corner of the world financially.  Almost every day during the summer, I was sitting in front of the computer working on lessons and applying to jobs.

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Frustration, Health Insurance, and Job Hunting

Today I am feeling a great deal of frustration.  I wanted to resolve my health insurance problem quickly, find a place of my own to live in, and get full-time employment.  Things did not go as planned.

In Upcoming Interview, I talked about an interview that I had in one of the colleges that I work for.  Despite the fact that I was incredibly nervous, I thought I did okay.  A few weeks later I found out that the position was cancelled.

In ‘I refuse to change neurologists!‘, I talked about the current problem that I am having with my health insurance.  I tried calling various people, and even went to my hospital’s patient financial councilors who help you with this kind of thing.  Unfortunately, I did not get the result I was hoping to hear.

I am feeling more than a little frustrated with my lack of results.  I can only see two ways things can play out:

  1. If I continue my quest for a full-time job, I would get health insurance benefits, financial stability, and eventually a place of my own.
  2. I may have to cave in and see a new neurologist.

I sent a message to my current neurologist to see what strategy she recommends, but have not heard back from her yet.  When I talked to someone else about this, and they thought it was great that I had insurance that was not dependent on your job.  Am I wrong to think that getting a full-time job will solve all my problems?

It has been a LONG semester

I can’t help but be excited that this semester is ending.  Between the winter storms, all the holidays, and other problems, I’m still not sure how I survived.

This winter has been the worst that I have experienced so far.  There were so many school cancellations.  I had to think creatively to get the students focused on academics and to try to get the material completed in time.   The large number of holidays that my college observes also interfered with my class.  I have never had a day off for  Presidents’ Day before moving here.  Final exams are next week and I am crossing my fingers hoping that they all pass.

During most of April, I searched for summer and fall employment.  I need summer jobs to make sure that I can pay my bills until the fall semester starts, and hopefully save some money.  I didn’t want to get stuck with no classes  again.  This year I was more aggressive with my search and it paid off.   I am still looking for full-time employment in the fall, but also considering more part-time work if that doesn’t work out.  Following up with companies has kept me busy.

I think I scheduled too many classes this year because I feel exhausted.  Unfortunately, I will probably end up accepting more classes than I should next semester also.  This seems to be a vicious cycle that I am stuck in.


Upcoming Interview


As I mentioned inJob Hunting Milestone #2: The face-to-face Interview,”  I have an interview in a few days.   I have made a few preparations in the meantime.

I want to make a good first impression. I went to the salon and got a haircut, and made sure my interview suit is in good condition.  I have copies of my resume on special resume paper.  I have a briefcase that I use for interviews that helps reinforce professionalism.

Next, I will prepare myself for any questions they may ask.  I am currently researching the company and its mission.  They have given me a specific topic to teach in front of a group of people.  I am reviewing the topic and will take advantage of this time to highlight my teaching skills.

My worst problem is that I tend to get anxious and panic in high pressure situations.  Maybe if I prepare for it and do my research then I will not feel as anxious.

Job Hunting Milestone #2: The face-to-face Interview


I did it!  I still can’t believe it.  As I mentioned in The Long Winter did not kill my Quest for Full-Time Employment, I applied to a full-time position at one of my current employers.  I got a face-to-face interview!

I was expecting them to turn me down.  I was expecting one of the ‘rejection emails’ saying that they received applications from many talented applicants.  That is not what happened.  They called me and requested a time for an interview.

I made sure to give myself time to prepare.  I am going to have one opportunity to make a good impression.  I need to make them believe that I am the perfect person for this position.

On a related note, what if I actually get a job offer?  How do you let them know about a chronic condition and request accommodations without scaring them?

The Long Winter did not kill my Quest for Full-Time Employment

During the past few months, I could not job search as often due to my heavy work load.  Things were even worse due to a harsh winter, which made it difficult to get to networking events.  I tried to make the small amount of time that I did have as efficient as possible.

I tried a couple of new things that have been helpful:

  1. carefully analyzing job postings – I am analyzing the job postings more critically.  I will also look at their mission statement.  Do I agree with their philosophy?  I only apply to the ones that I feel really resonate with me. Sometimes you forget this principle when looking for a job.
  2. Created a job search portfolio – a detailed account of when I applied for the job, who I contacted, etc.  This has been particularly useful for me.

I also looked at my current employers.  Are there any opportunities for me to transition to a full-time job? After talking to some other part-time professors like myself, they did not know of anyone who transitioned to a full-time professor position.  Many have applied for full-time positions, but were not hired.

I knew this already, and applied for a full-time position at one of my current employers.  I am proud to say that my application is still being considered.  I am following up with my contacts on a regular basis, and have not received a rejection email yet.

I am still attempting to network with others.  I feel this is an area is hurting me at the moment.  During some small pockets of free time, I try to go to meetings and other events to meet new people.  Large groups still make me nervous, but I’m hoping that with practice and time I will get better.

Intense workloads and chronic conditions

Student working on a laptop

The blog has been a little quiet over the past few months.  This semester I am working between two different colleges.  I am teaching multiple classes to a diverse range of students.

One of the colleges that I work at has finals next week.  In two weeks my course load will be much lighter than before.  That will be good because the stress is getting a little high and I feel exhausted.   Some days I come home and go to sleep right away.

I already have some classes reserved for me for Fall 2015.  That has relieved some of the stress.  However, I would have the same problem of working multiple part-time jobs with no benefits and no personal life.

Unfortunately, I don’t know if I’m going to get a summer class yet.  This was an issue last year (see summer employment), and I hope it doesn’t become an issue again.  I am already talking to people to see if they need a math professor over the summer.   I’m hoping because I’m being more proactive this year will lead to better results.

In the little free time that I do have, I have been job searching and making more attempts to network.  I will update you on my progress in another blog post.