After graduating in the spring, I was planning to move to Washington with my girlfriend in the fall, so she could enroll in a laboratory sciences program and I could start an RN-to-bachelor's degree program. In the meantime, I worked for four months on a night shift in a psychiatric ward in Florida.
I was sure the unique skills I acquired at this position would help me find a job after we moved. I would at least have an advantage over many of the other new grads... so I thought.
My girlfriend and I packed up our stuff, drove across the country, and made Seattle our new home. We were both accepted into our respective programs at the University of Washington. I thought -- two years nurse technician experience, four months psychiatric experience, and a student at one of the most prestigious nursing schools in the nation -- surely, a job wouldn't be too far down the road.
I'm now five months into my job search in the Seattle area. I've considered jobs that are within a one hour travel radius. I've learned to look for job postings that use the phrase "experience preferred" rather than "experience required."
At times I've dressed in my suit and tie, and traveled to introduce myself in person to the nurse manager. Each time I have either been told "He/She is in a meeting" or "She said that everything is done online." Though I'm not a luddite by any means, I do feel there's something to be said about meeting somebody in person.
Despite trudging through the monotonous employment process I feel that I have remained undeterred and my momentum steady and constant. Surely, this can't last forever.
Secretary or administrative assistant is still the most common job for U.S. women, just as it was in 1950.
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