A friend of mine makes $50K a year, has no debt and travels extensively. She didn’t go to university, instead she opted to move to the city and go to school for massage therapy. My friend is smarter than me for bucking the status-quo and lives her life the way she wants. Note that her visible tattoos have not prevented her from landing a job at the only 5-star spa in Los Angeles.
Unfortunately, I bought into the myth our parents sold us about education and chances for success. Currently, I am laden with $70K of student loan debt and make $12/hr. working as a marketing assistant…part-time. For the first four months of my tenure at my marketing job, which is comprised of handling all social media strategy and more, I also worked as a server. I decided to quit my serving job after I was averaging 30 hours/week in the office and because I hadn’t had a day off in those four months. Well, I did get Christmas off…according to baby-boomers who stayed at one job their entire lives with a cushy 401k, I should be grateful.
The company I work for is losing its backers and the President is scrambling to find new investors. While some people may be able to transition to a new company, my chances are slim since the company’s focus is payroll and I write tweets/blogs. On the bright side, my boss was recommending me to take over her position when she moves to Italy and she was going to serve as a consultant. That is no longer happening. Truthfully, my boss informed me that the only person who is guaranteed a job (so long as the company finds investors) is the president. That’s business…I suppose.
I have the choice of working for much less than I should be paid for any numerous part-time jobs and consistently be told that I’m ungrateful for wanting more—from the very people who taught me to want more—or I can make my own career.
Being on the brink of losing it all is terrifying. It’s probably more terrifying that I’m 27 and have nothing to really show for it, at least in the traditional “white-picket fence and 2.5 kids” sense.
I can’t pursue any additional education and I don’t want anymore. It’s frustrating having skills that people say they want (HTML, analytical mind, creativity, people skills) and you can’t get hired. Heck, you can’t even get an interview. Sorry, I can’t afford to be an unpaid intern for the *chance* of being hired for $25K in 6 months.
Honestly, I’m mad at myself for going back to school in the first place. See, I was pursuing my dream of being an actor and was doing moderately well. I got cast in quite a few commercials and even got to go on a business trip to Portland to film a spot for Kroger. However, I still wasn’t making enough money to quit my serving job and slinging beers to guys who grab your hips gets old after a few years. The well-over-30 bartender/actors (who have been on TV shows) also scared me into finishing my B.A., aka lifetime debt.
Now what? My job is going to end on June 1st and I have no hopeful prospects. I’ll probably wind up serving. At night, I’ll be staring at my degree with frustration while hoping that my resume gets through the dreaded applicant tracking system that will kick you out for any minor flaw in the application.
I should start taking tips from my friend.