If you’ve been following my posts, you know that I recently finished my Ph.D. At the end of that long road, another one begins: looking for a job in 2022. Much of what I want to reflect on here are simply things that I am working through at the moment. I’m happy to report that I have an interview for an academic position coming up in the next week, but the landscape in 2022 for all job fields is a complicated place that I hope we can navigate together.
So, without further adieu, here are a few things I’m currently working through in my search for a full-time job.
Think about Skills rather than degrees
Academic degrees can be pretty specific. Mine, for example, is in political science. More specifically, I teach and write mostly in political theory. That puts me in league with about four or five hundred other people in the country who do the same thing on paper.
But, does that mean that all I can do is political theory, and thus those are the only jobs I should apply to? In 2022, not at all. In my work as an educator, I have developed excellent critical thinking and writing skills. Additionally, I am in charge of groups of people and have to coordinate them to successful ends every semester. I also mentor young people and serve on academic committees.
Those skills, whether it’s organizing, writing, thinking critically, or carrying out long-term plans as a member of a community, are all valuable skills to a wide variety of industries. So, when you’re searching for a job, don’t just look at your certifications. Ask yourself: what are you good enough at so that you can make it work anywhere? For me, that has meant translating my writing and research chops into basically full-time work as a writer