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This Is Not a Test

Submitted by Ina K. Chung on June 24, 2010 – 9:00 amComments

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Photo courtesy sarahandthegoonsquad.com
Photo courtesy sarahandthegoonsquad.com

The fire department is testing our smoke alarms this morning and it’s hurting my ears. But somehow, the emergency warnings seem to be an appropriate backdrop to my day #47 of desperate job searching. “Warning. Warning. This is an emergency.”

With our move to New York coming up in about a little over a month, I’ve resorted to applying for jobs that require no more than a high school diploma or GED equivalent. I really have no choice, especially after I got the following message:

We are in the final stages of our selection process, and over the past three months, we have received over 550 applications and inquiries (for six possible positions). We have had many phone interviews and eight full-day interview sessions, during which we had the opportunity to meet and speak with some wonderful teachers.


“It’s tough out there” has become the understatement of the decade. I have forsaken my Masters degree in search of something – anything – that will pay the bills, whoring my organization skills, typing skills, alphabetizing skills for a chance to beat out the competition. I’ve written everything short of “I promise I’ll be the best employee you’ve ever had” in cover letters with the hope that authenticity and earnestness will earn me more than a glance at my resume.

But I realize that I’m in good company. Or poor company, however you see it.

Do you feel like you’ve sold your soul to market yourself to potential employers in this impossible job market?

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