Woes of the Job Market Economy & the College Educated Millennial

Well its Friday, so Goede Vrijdag to you. Another week gone, surpassed, and full of anticlimactic fun. Changes are afoot, and I am personally looking forward to turning over a loose leaf in a breezy new direction. My fiancé and I are now making plans to vacate our Westwood apartment for an upgrade as he says, packing up, and creating a new home in another zip code of Los Angeles. Gosh, this place is beautiful and it seems to be working as a super charm in our favor. I hope this case remains the same, and commences on a string of good luck. I sure could use some positive karma right about now.

Its been about, oh I don’t know, two solid months now since I graduated from UCLA. With Honors and in the top 6% of my class and the nation. My attempts at humility don’t serve in my best interest however, and at the time of this blog contribution I am still unemployed. Its super shitty too because I’ve submitted a host of online applications, as that is how it is now done in the world of paperless detachment. Its really difficult for me to keep track of how many jobs I’ve applied to now and where. My search has been far-reaching with respect to career interests, professional experience, learned craft, and knowledge of expertise. I’m a writer. What else can I say. I’m trained in the art of the American novel and cultural phenomenons.

That however does not make for a good soundbite or selling point. I’m an Artist ~ I create Art. In what medium? Well, in many. The written word, cultural criticism, sociological observer, performance artist, painter, and poet among other talents. When I was just a Girl dreaming of the greater world and my place in it, I imagined myself as first a Dancer, and soon after, a Singer. A trained Vocalist and Lady of the Chorus, I studied and practiced many years the art of voice, sound & projection, the spoken word, context, and communication. From Elementary through High School, the only survival technique I had down to a cue was performance art through song, dance, and writing. Of course when you’re an anxious ridden asthmatic there is only so much one can stand to pursue. And it sure wasn’t chemical science. Although advanced physics, astronomical constellations, and material engineering are all within my field of comprehension.

So why is it that I cannot find a job? I’m an excellent writer, and that appears to be one of the #1 sought after traits. What is it about my articulately composed cover letters and impeccable design of my margin to margin packed resumé that does not make it past the initial review stages to even warrant an interview? I’d almost be insulted were it not for my eternal optimism. You know, if its not meant to be, then so be it. Of course something will come along in time, but damn, I want some work now! Not that I’ll work for pennies on the dollar (I’ve never served prison time), but I do value culturally and professionally enriching work experiences. Meaning I will sacrifice some green dollars if it gets more projects green lit in the future. As long as I’m having fun and learning, searching out new knowledge and ancients wisdoms, I am good.

So what can I do better? I’ve been working with a handful of temp-agencies, none of which have secured any work or interviews with firms up to this time. I had to fill out entire applications over & over again, filed tax forms & submitted social security information for zilch in return. Not even a follow up thank you for your interest outside of a standard automatic reply. I mean where is the human connection? I am getting lost within computer systems of incompetent staffers who can’t distinguish shining star talent from a pool of average mediocrity. Is it me? Am I the one with exorbitant expectations for fulfilling work in my post-grad career life? I have all the relevant professional experience — financial consultant, banking officer, fashion stylist, administrative and executive assistant roles. Sure I’m summing up over ten years of service in the retail customer service trenches, but I did it all & was pretty damn good at it.

And thats just the surface level! I am a college Honors graduate from a world-class university. When Drake proclaims that we started from the bottom now we here, he’s more or less talking about me & my Boo. 🙂 Seriously though, I’m a late bloomer and I started all over where I began. When I graduated from high school only three years into the 21st century millennia, I was skating by on the skin of my teeth. In fact, I graduated a month or two later than the rest of my 12th grade H.S. class because I failed English. If thats not ironic then I don’t know what the fuck is. Its cool, everything is a learning experience for me, and I’m happy to take my lumps with sugar because its made me of a stronger, more resilient character.

When I took up the challenges of reentering school in my mid-twenties, the country was well into what is now referred to as the Great Recession, a political play on the Great Depression if you didn’t get that. Well it was crappy to say the least. I was working as a financial consultant or a member service representative as those corporate institutions like to call us front-line laborers. I was balancing hundreds of thousands of dollars out of bank vaults, safes, computer ledgers, and financial instruments. I didn’t dole out loans & mortgages, but I offered savings accounts, safeties, and securities to our trusted members. I love people, I loved getting to know them, and learning about their families, careers, and financial goals. It was my job. And at the same time, I was unconsciously witness to the biggest corporate scheme this generation has seen. In the end I became a victim to it. But did I come away with a wealth of practical experience, and intimate knowledge of a financially rigged system? You bet your sweet keister mister.

It was in that 2008 moment I had to make a change. A big one. And as it turned out “Change”, “Hope”, and “Progress” were the operative words of the political moment. Barack Obama had just rode a wave of spirited optimism of the Millennial youth movement into the President’s Office. And by God, he, his family, and his ideas were increasingly beautiful. In fact, President Obama recently sent me a “personal” letter from the White House congratulating me on behalf of First Lady Michelle Obama and himself on my educational accomplishment. The letter even has the White House embossed seal. Super Legit. It was a long, fulfilling, enlightening, empowering, and transformative experience, one that I wouldn’t re-write for all the majors in the world. America’s narrative is one of great sacrifice, reward, tragedy, and triumph. I thrive on this story, but it has come at an unknown cost. Its imperative that to fully and fundamentally understand the depths of the United States warped dichotomies and binaries, one must descend into its ignored, erased, and darkest histories. And thats only a fraction of the whole story.

White House LetterI’m the kind of citizen that likes to delve into the nitty-gritty, the flesh & bones of untold tales. When Janet Jackson’s says We Go Deep & We don’t get no sleep, she’s referring to my research dedication. Thorough might be an understatement. Leave no rock unturned is my motto. I examine almost every piece of literature, pop-cultural prose, political engineering, and systematic failure through an sociological & intersectional feminist lens which includes but is never limited to a comprehensive analysis of gender, race, class, sexuality, and ability. Now whether or not I can actually include every last stitch of academic research within the context of my thesis, that is another matter altogether. My imagination is too great to contain every last inkling of intuition, but I attempt with passion and diligence nonetheless.

Needless to say, I now have a university’s education worth of prolific essays and research analysis stockpiled in my archived home files & personal computer. Not only did I put a lot of time, energy, and creative effort into each one, but they take up a lot of storage space. Plus they can’t change, shape, influence, and inspire the world if they’ve only been read by myself, Professors, and maybe my fiancé. He’s my go-to editor and claims that he would now like to perform the duties of my manager. Hey, if he gets the job done, then I am happy to welcome him into my life under that capacity as well. My Georgie is a Pro.

So why, I ask, can I not find a job? I’m smart, talented, creative, experienced, professional, maintain excellent communication written & skills, AND hold in my possession a letter of recommendation from President Obama… depending on how you look at it. Overwhelmingly one of the largest complaints American Citizens have with their United States government is that there is no quality work available on the job market economy. I’ve heard they’re out there and we just have to look for them, but damn, it was easier for me to find good work with fair pay before I ever went to UCLA to get me an education. Ooh-Whee, whats up with that?

With that question in mind, I am going to close this weekly blog in the hopes that this week I can up my ante by revisiting my past works, editing for stronger prose and analysis, and uploading for the public’s reading pleasure & enjoyment. Maybe, just maybe, they’ll help me find a job. I am, after all, a writer.

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