I Can’t Find A Job

Overeducated, under experienced, and unemployed

The Unemployed

with 187 comments

I Can't Find A JobI finished up my Masters degree in January 2009.  I’ve found that I overeducated myself out of the job market as I have minimal real-world experience yet I have a higher education than 99% of the people I’m interviewing with.  Although I recently found a job in my field (heck, it’s better than retail), the pay is lousy and the opportunity is marginal. But hey, at least I get some of that much talked about “experience” I didn’t have when I initially entered the job market.

I’ll use this blog to share my frustrations as I look for a job that will actually pay me more than $12/hour.

Leave a comment to offer me a better job, advice, food stamps, and feedback.


Written by icantfindajob

February 7, 2009 at 1:24 am

187 Responses

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  1. Unemployed, I love the interview story. I understand your plight. I graduated from law school in ’07 and left a 10 year career in engineering to move 400 miles away so that I could get laid off after one year. Now, I can’t seem to find anyone willing to bring on a “new” attorney at this time. Meanwhile, I’m stuck paying for CLE’s and State Bar Admission Fees to keep my license… a license to stay home and look for work 🙂

    Thanks for the follow @IPLawMan on Twitter. I’ll follow you, if you’ll follow me 🙂


    February 11, 2009 at 2:38 am

  2. I feel your pain. I have worked as a Catia Designer for the Big 3 for 25 yrs. I was laid-off in November the day before Thanksgiving I still have not found a job! So I’m using Michigan’s No Worker Left Behind training to get a new career in Software Engineer in Applications seems to be some jobs there hope they are still there when I’m done!

    Ken Leppek

    February 22, 2009 at 12:24 pm

  3. @Ken Leppek – Sorry to hear about your troubles. That’s a tough position to be in and I hope you bounce back soon!


    February 22, 2009 at 8:25 pm

  4. I totally feel you on the jobless plight. I just graduated from law school in ’08 and can’t find a job as a new attorney, but at the same time am required, like IPLawMan, to pay for CLE’s and bar dues, not to mention the student loans. Way to graduate in a recession (depression?), huh?


    February 22, 2009 at 8:54 pm

  5. @Liza @IPLawMan – That’s horrible! And I guess you’re stuck because if you don’t pay, you probably lose some sort of certification, right? Its amazing that we’re all so educated yet no one is willing to take a shot on us, even in a down economy!


    February 23, 2009 at 6:55 am

  6. It’s the same old song, with a different meaning since the job’s been gone. Hey – just came across your blog, good stuff. Thought we should link up since we’re in the same boat here at The 405 Club, New York’s Official Unemployment Benefit Collection Club, where members collect $405/week from NY state… obviously the fastest growing club in NY, unfortunately. That being said, out of staters are welcome as well… come on over and join the network my fellow unemployed blogger and perhaps swap links on our cozy affiliates section.


    The 405 Club

    March 3, 2009 at 4:00 pm

  7. 5 years ago, I arrived in Sydney, Australia with my wife with nothing except our luggage.

    I started actively looking for jobs but just could not find one.

    I submitted my resumes anywhere and everywhere. During the first couple of months, I sent out well over 100 hand-crafted resumes and went for countless preliminary interview with job agencies.

    Every day was a living nightmare. It’s like somehow you’re not being a responsible “man” if you cannot earn any moolah to support your wife. It gets worse after 3 months of unemployment when your parents-in-laws decides to drop in to stay with the newlyweds (us) for a visit (and to check up on their daughter and this “still unemployed” son-in-law).

    It was a torture going to sleep every night, knowing the same routine of resume submission awaits you the next day and not knowing when or where that “one” phone call that will change your life is going to come.

    I even tried doing shelf-packing (but the supermarkets refuse to hire non-graduates – non graduates are cheap labour and are not subjected to wage constraints/union laws). Even Subway said thanks but no thanks.

    During those months, in between typing/sending out resumes, I recalled how I used to wait for an hour or two each day at our local supermarket to advertise the “cheap”/discounted food products so I can purchase them at 20% off. Money was tight alright. I was literally counting pennies.

    Those months were one of the hardest periods of my life but funnily enough, one of the happiest yet depressing moments of my life.

    My wife was more fortunate. She got a part-time contract position which was just enough to cover our rent and living expenses during that period.

    I was and still am very thankful that my wife supported me all the way through. We had many fights, tears and laughter during those times.

    And I did finally managed to get that “one” phone call 6 months later.

    So hang in there! 🙂


    March 3, 2009 at 8:34 pm

  8. @The405Club I love your site and you made it to the blogroll. Good stuff!

    @tanc(happyhippo) Thanks for the inspiring story. I especially know where you are coming from!


    March 4, 2009 at 7:35 am

  9. what exactly is your degree in?

    and as for supermarkets not hiring “non-graduates” I’m not quite sure what you mean by that, I’ve worked at a supermarket for 8 years and it is what’s currently putting me through college as I type lol


    March 4, 2009 at 10:46 pm

  10. @C For complete anonymity, I have decided not to reveal what my degree is in on this blog. Perhaps with time I will open up more. Thanks for reading.


    March 5, 2009 at 7:06 am

  11. readnshare

    March 6, 2009 at 12:31 pm

  12. I’m in the same boat. I am considered “very marketable” and cannot find a job. The interviews I go on, tell me I am overqualified – which begs the question… did they not READ my resume? Could they not ascertain that with the initial phone screening?

    Now I am trying to keep my house out of foreclosure and literally going mad because all I ever wanted was to work – not marriage, kids etc.

    Thanks and keep em coming!

    jobless too

    March 6, 2009 at 4:55 pm

  13. check craigslist.

    jobless too

    March 6, 2009 at 4:56 pm

  14. @jobless too – It’s in the arsenal already. I’ve been checking Craigslist diligently.


    March 6, 2009 at 5:33 pm

  15. @jobless too – I hear you! If you check out my post called “The First Interview” I was offered a $11/hr part-time job working weekend nights and using my own car. Did they really think I was going to take it? Why even bother calling me in if you’re going to offer something like that?

    I hope things work out for you. Best of luck and keep reading!


    March 6, 2009 at 5:35 pm

  16. Thanks for so much for the feedback. I LOVE that you comment back. I went on a job interview today that is offering a long laundry list of requirements but offering HALF of what my old salary was and no health insurance! I guess the economy has put us “all” on sale! Thing is my home (below 25% income bracket) and my expenses are based on the salary structure I have had for the last 5 plus years which is well over 50k! I dont know what to do…Im not one of those that bought a house they couldnt afford. One one that cant secure a decent job becasue employees are taking advantage of the situation! If I dont take it, there is a long line of people that will! Not sure what to do…. feedback?

    jobless too

    March 12, 2009 at 9:08 pm

  17. PS Keep the complete anonymity! Hiring managers are VERY weird about whats out there… Did you read


    and I quote

    “While many laid off bloggers find leads and camaraderie, experts question whether being so open will help land a job. Even a mostly upbeat blog can have dangerous slipups, say recruiters. And one wrong post can hurt a candidate’s chance of getting a valuable interview.

    Berkeley professor Ms. Chatman warns that having too many personal details available online can be “easily misinterpreted by a potential employer who is interested in hiring the professional you.” Employers might use the information to weed out applicants before conducting an interview.”

    This is another good site I keep up with


    Also, google your name and see whats out there. A lot of hiring managers do this to weed applicants out and although common sense, not all practive the discretion.

    “I” dont exist in cyber land AT ALL…. my alter ego does, but not me, my name.

    DO you twitter? You could be very instrumental in helping and vice versa if you keep up with this not to mention if fills the long, boring day (blog please!)

    Thanks once again for replying to comments.

    jobless too

    March 12, 2009 at 9:15 pm

  18. i may have some leads in my industry that want a college graduate with no experience exclusively. what part of the country are you in?

    jobless too

    March 12, 2009 at 9:47 pm

  19. @jobless too I plan on keeping my anonymity! 😉

    My name doesn’t have much of an online presence. You won’t find me shirtless with Sharpie marker writings all over my chest and a half-empty bottle of Grey Goose dancing on a coffee table.

    As far as your job offer goes, it depends on how badly you need the job. If you desperately need a job to keep afloat, then by all means take it. Sure its less than what you are accustomed to, but its SOMETHING. To earn extra income, you could find a retail job, waiter, bartend, etc. to make up some of the difference. If you married, perhaps your wife can pick up a part-time job!? It’s no secret that employers are taking advantage of the large pool of potential applicants with less benefits and lower salaries.

    Thanks for reading and keep checking back!


    March 13, 2009 at 8:48 am

  20. Let me freakin tell about the telephone interviw I had today…

    1) She was VERY late calling me.
    2) When she finally did, she did not have my resume in front of her so I had to resend it vi email to her.
    3) She had me start the interview by talking about myself – which of course was everything that was in front of her said resume.
    4) She was taking copious notes so I had to repeat myself ALOT and had to pause alot in between the interview.
    5) She had quite the accent so I couldnt freakin understand half of what she was saying in the first place.
    6) In closing she took down my salary information for my past three positions.
    7) Thats it.
    8) I had to ask her about the position, she offered nothing and she pretty much read the JD –
    9) She offered nothing else! Nothing about the company, brands, no enthusiam, no salary package NOTHING!

    Now I am interviewed ALOT in the past few days but does any of this seem off to anyone?



    March 13, 2009 at 6:44 pm

  21. icantfindajob, I can’t agree with you more on your first paragraph. I graduated with a degree in journalism and a minor in liberal studies, giving me a variety of useful analytical skills but nothing in the way of employable aspects. Plus, since I’ve only worked publishing and journalism jobs, I have nothing in the way of food service or manual labor skills to even get something part-time.

    I thought I’d landed the perfect job a few months ago, but I was laid off at the end of February as even the publishing industry isn’t immune to the recession. I’m currently trying to either get an office job or figure out what other sort of work I could actually do.


    March 18, 2009 at 9:21 pm

  22. Thanks so much for the feedback. What part of the country are you in?

  23. I would like to speak with the owner of this site regarding cross-marketing. We have a number of opportunities to market our site and we would like to share those opportunities with other helpful layoff sites. We are 100% non-profit, no ads allowed. All run by volunteers.
    Please email me craig@layoffsupportnetwork.com with your address. Thanks! – Craig

    To others, the site is http://www.layoffsupportnetwork.com
    It was created by two laid-off programmers (25 years experience each..like we had anything better to do…).

    Craig Brown

    April 11, 2009 at 9:27 pm

  24. Love the site- if you ever want to write a guest post for http://www.dumbemployed.com, let us know. It’s a funny place to complain about having a job (once you get one).


    May 17, 2009 at 11:36 pm

  25. Interesting site, I am at the opposite spectrum, unemployed older skilled worker, no college and do not care to start. Why should I pay 45,000 for a degree to start less than a assembler. I feel for many reasons collage education has been devalued; my biggest pet peeve is lack of vocational alternatives. Also being a Navy veteran, I wonder a masters degree can put one in a catch 22. The industry is pushing for people to be collage educated and to continue education but there few position where a person can properly apply their knowledge or blatant misuses of a degree, as in demanding a college degree for apposition that should be skilled labor, (I.e. hiring and engineer as an low paid technician/assembler) The analogy in my mind is on a ship, there is plenty need for seaman but there only need for one Captain. I see in my industry too many business leaders want everybody to spend years training to be a captain then to only make them a seaman.

    Scatcat PDX

    June 22, 2009 at 2:00 pm

  26. @ Scatcat PDX – Thanks for reading!

    Nevermind $45,000 for a 4-year degree. Go to a private school and the bill will easily surpass $100 K leaving recent grads with huge masses of debt and no jobs. How can one start a life with no job coupled with student loan repayments that exceed $1,000 a month? If one gets a job, how does one pay that coupled with rent, car, insurance, food, etc. on a meager starting salary?

    As far as vocational skills or trades go, it’s sad to see that its a dying industry. Manufacturing is almost but extinct in this country and any idiot is calling themselves a contractor these days, often leaving your project in shambles or destroying your house. Gones are the days when skilled workers come to your house/place of business and apply their trade well. Couple that with the fact of cheap, illegal labor and you have a dismal situation.

    Anyways, thanks for reading and best of luck in the job search!


    June 23, 2009 at 10:29 am

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    Productions. We’re promoting and distributing a new independent comedy, Sno Cone, Inc,
    starring Tony Sirico and Morgan Fairchild. We decided to make the film extremely relevant to our
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    reject the traditional corporate setting and try to find their own path by starting a sno cone stand.
    The film is inspired by real events, as the writer/director, Travis Knapp worked for the largest
    investment bank in the world before deciding to foray into the film industry.

    Check us out and pre-order the DVD at

    Thank you,
    Sno Cone Inc.

    John H

    June 26, 2009 at 1:13 pm

  28. at least you have a fucking job, I’ve been looking for any job for the last 10 months, bar sales(dried up market, i need a job that will last) and no one will hire me, i don’t have a fucking pimped out resume, i don’t have work experience, i just want a damn job doing anything that pays minimum wage and to even get that catch 22 i have to have 3 previous jobs, 5 professional references, and a life’s fucking history, and creative writing for why i want to wash YOUR GOD DAMN DISHES!

    there are PLENTY of fucking jobs out there for you, at least theyre hiring, i rarely see a job I’m qualified for anymore, and applications arent much good when you can barely fill them out (they all demand work history and at least 3 professional references,) no matter how inane and easy the task is!


    July 10, 2009 at 11:19 am

  29. Hey Anon, you seem pretty angry but I’ll still reply like I would if you weren’t.

    First, it’s not like I woke up one day and had a “pimped out resume.” I worked for my degrees and worked hard. I didn’t go to school for free and I didn’t go to private school. Both undergrad and grad schools were public schools where 6 years of post-high school education cost about the same of 2 years of undergrad at a private school. I worked part-time while going to school and put myself through hell, especially during grad school, to get what I got. The last few months of grad school were some of the worst of my life as they were incredibly stressful and filled with anxiety.

    Second, there aren’t plenty of jobs out there for me. That’s sorta why I created this website – out of frustration of my inability to find a job in my field. The only reason I have my part-time retail job was because I’ve been working there since I started college. If I didn’t have this, I wouldn’t have anything. Retailers tend not to hire overqualified people with the thought that they’ll go elsewhere relatively soon and be in the same position of needing people versus if they hired someone more suited for the job.

    Lastly, I don’t have work history in my field and I don’t see jobs I’m qualified for. I’m either overqualified and thus my resume is overlooked or I’m underqualified and not considered.

    I wish you luck. If I were you, I’d consider becoming a waiter/bartender or work retail (for a good company) with aspirations to become a manager. Look into it.


    July 10, 2009 at 12:49 pm

  30. The state of the economy and job market is truly depressing. I’m a 1/4 way into graduate studies after job-hopping for the last 4 years after getting a BA. Couldn’t ever really settle on a career. What a waste of tuition eh?

    Now I’m racking up more debt, pinning my hopes of entering a great career on this graduate education, but I know there are no guarantees. The overwhelming theme here seems to be overqualified and overeducated with too little experience in a depressed job market.

    I’m single and don’t have kids or anything. I’m seriously thinking about expatriation to another country after I graduate to teach English. At least there’s a demand somewhere for what I know.

    Am I justified in my pessimism for the near future of the jobless?


    July 14, 2009 at 6:59 am

  31. @comm438t Sadly, I think you right on with your job expectations. Things are going to get worse before they get better.

    Commercial real estate is vacant and prolonged vacancies will lead to foreclosure. This coupled with inflation will do more damage.

    Just keep up hope and hope that luck errs on your side!


    July 21, 2009 at 11:36 am

  32. @ John H Sorry for the delay in approving your comment! You got thrown into the spam folder and I didn’t catch it until now.

    I usually delete blatant advertisements but the movie sounds unique and related to the theme of the site.


    July 21, 2009 at 11:40 am

  33. Hey buddy, I feel your pain. Like, really really feel it – right in my wallet. I don’t have a Masters, but I finished up my Bachelors in February and things just keep looking grimmer. It’s rare that I even get an email telling me they received my application or a rejection email/call/anything – for jobs big and small! The worst part is that I would love to be proactive, but so many job listings these days say “DO NOT CALL, we’ll call you!”

    I just love being totally ignored, don’t you? *le sigh* I’m subscribing to your blog, I hope things get better for you (and me)!

    Stephanie PTY

    July 22, 2009 at 12:20 pm

  34. @ Stephanie PTY I get the “we received your application” auto e-mail everytime I apply but RARELY RARELY RARELY get a call for further information. This applies to jobs that I’m overqualified for, underqualified for, and jobs that I’m seemingly just right for. And yes, the *do not e-mail* or *do not call* notices are quite frustrating. I want to be sure someone actually took a look at my resume yet don’t know if violating their crappy rule will ruin my slim chances of getting the job if they’re actually considering me.

    I’ll drink to things getting better! 🙂


    July 22, 2009 at 6:37 pm

  35. Dude I feel youre frustration, the key to this new venture in your life is to keep hope alive!! and network as much as you can. I dont know too much about your background (age, career, etc), but from what i gather you seem very well-rounded and intellectual from all the years (and money) spent in the academia community. Its unfortunate to think that a person with such high accolades as yourself has to deal with this. Anyhow a little about me, I am an Air force veteran who served 6 years as a Dot Watcher (radar guy), which basically is a career field only usable within the military, and with very few jobs available in the civilian realm. So I got out in 2005 and receieved a BS in information Technologies, which is wholly saturated as a career field, to say the least especially in miami. I found closely related jobs in I.T. that paid close to minimum wage but nothing more, all the while filling out job apps evry day looking for something better. It got to a point where i was a trench digger making 250 a week !!!! this is not cool when you are newly married BTW. Anyhow my life started to suck the most the minute i graduated college…ironic?? well to make a long story even longer I went to USAJOBS.GOV and found that working for the government would be best way to go since the economy is horrendous. I dont know if you are fond of working for the goverment, or if you have any pre-conceived notions of it, but i can imagine if you are still currently unemployed anything goes right? well i submitted my resume and lo and behold i got a job that was more in line with my military experience than anything else. Just though id mention that since you have a masters degree why not use this to your advantage working for the government in some capacity. There are tons of jobs in this site, most of which are open to the public. the good thing about working for the government is that its great on a resume and its good work experience. Get a job for now that pays the bills, and keep submitting job aplications everyday. I hope im not telling something youre already doing but im just trying to be a pal. It took me 4 years from the time i graduated to land a good job (granted i did have to move from FL-CA) but the wait was worth it.


    July 27, 2009 at 3:29 am

  36. Thanks for this website… I, too, have a master’s degree that I paid dearly for (read: massive student loan debt) only to find that it is worth pretty much nothing in terms of employment. I have sent out over 150 resumes this summer – well, since March really. I’ve tried shooting high, tried shooting low, reworked the resume, gone on completely awful interviews and nothing has come of it. It’s so frustrating! And it’s hard to watch your family have to tighten their belts because you, the one with the degree, can’t find a job. It does help to know I’m not alone though and that others are having just as hard a time as I am. After a while, you start to wonder what the heck is wrong with you, why aren’t employers calling, is there a glaring typo on your resume or something?? I mean geez! Anyway, thanks for the blog and I hope we ALL find work soon.


    August 1, 2009 at 3:15 am

  37. I’m glad I found this site as well. I got laid off at the end of May. I’ve been doing odd jobs for the last three months just to pay my bills. I’m thankful that I have a place to live, but it’s discouraging to not be able to land a job after so much time has passed and resumes have been submitted. I have stopped putting my masters degree on my resume (I just graduated) because I wasn’t getting any interviews. Now I’ve gotten a couple preliminary interviews, but no offers. The outlook is bleak. It’s good to know I’m not alone.


    August 3, 2009 at 3:01 pm

  38. @dontdistribmy0s I feel your pain. Like you I’ve shooted low, high, and just right all to no avail. The two interviews I’ve been on were completely awful (one has been blogged about and the other I’ve been meaning to so it’s coming).

    And I too have wondered what the heck is wrong with me. I somehow think everybody else knows how to apply to jobs and its me just going about it wrong or doing it wrong. I’ve also searched for that non-existent glaring typo or piece of profanity on my resume that might have thwarted my job search.

    Good luck to you and thanks for reading!


    August 3, 2009 at 9:58 pm

  39. @ Hoff I’ve often thought about “dumbing down” my resume under the assumption that my graduate degree might be working against me. I figured employers might think I’m some high-salary demanding hot shot that thinks he knows everything.

    Good luck to you and thanks for reading!


    August 3, 2009 at 10:00 pm

  40. I can’t find a job either.


    August 4, 2009 at 9:58 am

  41. I just want to applaud you on channeling your lack of employment into something many people, including myself, can identify with and find solace in. I am in the process of moving home from NYC to Dallas [with dear ol mom and dad] after essentially exhausting every resource and possibility and interning in my field for the better part of the last two years. I greatly appreciate your wit, intellect and occasional jabs at the Obamas and their penchant for overpriced beef.. it’s nice to know there are other frustrated, overeducated and unemployed folks out there to pool my collective disgruntlement with.


    August 11, 2009 at 11:25 pm

  42. @ Kat Glad to hear you enjoy my blog and hope things turn around for you! Best of luck!


    August 12, 2009 at 5:52 am

  43. @icantfindajob
    I am in the exact same situation! Loved university and did quite well but I was totally unprepared for what came next. The worst part about it is the awful people that interview you. In so many cases they are short-sighted and sometimes just dumb. I feel like nobody is willing to take a chance on somebody anymore. They are unable to identify potential in a person rather than asking whether they have switchboard experience!?
    Check out some of my bad interview stories on my blog:


    August 13, 2009 at 7:12 pm

  44. I am so glad I found this site! I also understand the pain and frustration that everyone is going through. I wake up in the morning eat breakfast, get online and basically make a full-time job out of looking for a job. I take a lunch break then hop right back on the computer sending out resumes! It frustrates me to think that all this hard work and effort I am putting into looking for a job… I could probably have become a CEO by now if I was actually working for a company LOL.

    I’ve come to realize that we are numbers now. I don’t take any denial personally anymore, and I just try to stay positive about the whole thing. It does suck though, I just turned 30 and I should be having the time of my life. Instead, I am broke, living with the parents, jobless, and will probably never get the dream job that I want.

    Is anyone else applying for jobs all over the United States? I am applying in-state and out-of-state.

    Yours Truly

    August 17, 2009 at 2:39 pm

  45. Oh I wanted to add one more frustration! I am sure most of us can relate LOL. Don’t you hate it when even tho you KNOW you’re qualified to do a job, just because you don’t have the exact number of years of experience or the exact requirements of the job, they don’t call you or hire you? Sometimes I just feel like saying “look… I have two arms, two legs, and two eyes… I can do the job!”

    Yours Truly

    August 17, 2009 at 2:42 pm

  46. I love cranky websites – great for not feeling like a total social pariah! We unemployed need the free group support.

    I graduated last year with two professional degrees in good standing. Now I get the head-popping annoyance of trying to find environmental or related international development work – no experience, no way. To get experience, one must generally PAY for multiple internship opportunities, or take an overseas internship entirely gratis, despite having no money post-graduation. All this to work in lower-paying jobs (compared to business) in the end (despite karmic benefits)…It is so ridiculous as to be hilarious. I volunteer locally to off-set the on-set of insanity.

    It is all about opportunities, which are murder to find or create…my new motto runs as Dory the Angelfish sings – ‘Just keep swimming!’ with fingers crossed.


    August 18, 2009 at 1:08 am

  47. @ shortlisted24 Thanks for checking out my blog. Like I’ve said before, nobody is willing to take a chance of anybody anymore and people in charge of hiring act like they themselves were born into a suit & tie with 20 years of upper-management experience. It doesn’t make any sense.

    A lot of the people I’ve spoken to have left me asking the question of why I can’t do their job. They weren’t particularly bright or skilled and I bet, they barely knew what they were doing. And here they were telling me I’m not qualified to do anything.

    About the experience issue, I thought the same thing! Just because I don’t have 1 year of nonsense, low level experience shouldn’t rule me out from a job. Does that mean they want some idiot that has 1 year of crappy experience on their resume versus someeone that could be potentially bright and also learn the job quickly? Amazing.


    August 19, 2009 at 8:01 pm

  48. @ Yours Truly

    Amen to that experience commment. I’ve seen PLENTY of jobs that I knew deep down I could do but didn’t have their ridiculous requirements so I was prevented from being considered further. It is one of the more frustrating aspects of job searching.

    Thanks for reading and best of luck!


    August 19, 2009 at 8:04 pm

  49. @ Agdabet Don’t get me started on internships or even extremely low-level, entry jobs. The money you make (if you even get a wage) is laughable and you end up having to spend money to “work” for a company. You have to get a part-time job so you can have the money to work at your full-time job. Only in America.

    You have to gain “valuable workplace experience” fetchiing coffee and stapling papers. Yeah, those are skills I’ll be sure to take with me when I get a job.


    August 19, 2009 at 8:06 pm

  50. I feel all of your pain!! I have owned my own construction company for 11 years, I cant buy a contract job right now! I have decided to look for a job in my field of expertise (what few jobs there are) and because I have always worked for myself no one thinks I will be loyal, or be able to work for someone else. So needless to say it ticks me off!!!

    ticked off

    August 24, 2009 at 7:15 pm

  51. I understand your plight. I recently graduated with my Masters in Education and I am also unemployed. I applied to substitute teach but so far have not gotten any jobs. I am confident that I will find employment soon. I just have to keep telling myself that. In the meantime I had to apply for an unemployment defferment for my student loans.


    August 31, 2009 at 3:03 pm

  52. Hey,

    I graduated in May 2009. No job either. I have a masters degree in civil and enviro engineer.

    I am so fed up of searching. I dont know what 2 do anymore. Feel worthless and suicidal, all the time.


    September 3, 2009 at 3:35 pm

  53. I graduated in August of 2009 Magna Cum Laude with my MS Degree in Information Technology and Management from Florida State University (go ‘Noles). I have 8 years in the Air Force in avionics and have worked for large organizations such as UNISYS and various universities with tons of management and IT experience (project management, network administration, OO programming, etc). In anticipation of my graduation, I have been in constant search for over a year with little feedback. At this time, especially thinking of my wife and children, I considered taking the very first opportunity; however, the first opportunity was going back into the military with an $85k salary. The recruiters were vaguely honest and ‘briefly mentioned’ that I would go to Afghanistan for at least a year. I have already ‘been there done that’ during Desert Storm, so I refused the semi-lucrative position. I had another position offered with an annual salary of $225k but going overseas to Iraq for 3 years. Very tempting, but I want to come back to the US alive. Now, I try to wait patiently, sending out my CV (at least 2 per day) and work in an underpaid position where they just cut all pay by 7% to keep the organization afloat . . .


    September 19, 2009 at 7:52 am

  54. Paying for a masters, my old employer screwed me over, offered me a job, quit my previous one to take it, they pulled out after, cant afford an attorney to fight, cant get laid cause I dont have money. Applied everywhere and only the dodgy door to door marketing services have been in contact. great thing to google a company name and the word “scam” comes up. I was optimistic before , but its been almost a year and ill be on the streets soon. thanks democrats and republicans, you have both sold out to big business and interests. America has the highest unemployment rate in the developed world, next to Ireland. Cant give me unemployment anymore, but you’ll bail the wall street gamblers out who caused this. God bless America


    September 23, 2009 at 5:05 pm

  55. Great site! I graduated in July with an MA in International Relations. I figured I’d hedge my bets and move to DC, which has the lowest unemployment in the country, yet I am having the same problems the rest of you are. My job right now is looking for a job, I think I send out 5 – 15 resumes a day for jobs in both DC and the Boston area. You’d think with 8 years sales and advertising experience, 2 years of experience volunteering on campaigns plus and advanced degree I’d at least be getting calls. I’ve had a few interviews but they were for internships… which are unpaid… and yet still highly competitive. I seem to be stuck in the same boat as everyone else – either overqualified or underqualified.


    October 3, 2009 at 9:55 am

  56. Same in the UK too. I’ve worked in Material Supply for manufacturing companies since leaving Uni in 1994. I’m now 36 and I’ve hit a brick wall. Where I live in the north of England manufacturing has taken a beating. Plus 3 out of the 4 companies I have worked for have since closed down completely. I need to change direction but don’t have the prof quals or skills to change. The job search is literally driving me nuts. I’ve been to the Doc’s but I don’t think a happy pill will help me get a new job. I’ve applied for lower grade jobs but am told I’m too senior and the other jobs that I don’t have the specific experience. The job agencies are useless and if you chase them up then they start to get annoyed. Its absolutely soul destroying. But at least I don’t have a mountain of debt and I have a roof over my head albeit my parents roof.

    Matt UK

    October 6, 2009 at 7:15 am

  57. Hope is gone…..6 months unemployed – only 1 phone interview – was way over qualified. have lowered my salary requirements to 1/2 of what I was making – and still nothing. I have 8 notebook pages of username/passwords for all the sites I have spent hours of time at filling out their application and questions. Still nothing past a automated reply. I want out of this black hole and am contemplating relocation from Los Angeles as a possibility….HELP!
    Are there any real jobs out there?????


    October 9, 2009 at 10:03 pm

  58. @ Martin/@ Matt UK Best of luck! Hopefully things will turn around for you soon! Just know you are in good company.


    October 10, 2009 at 5:19 am

  59. @ Kathy I’m making significantly less than I thought I would make after finishing grad school. Although I’m not crazy about that, I’m happy to have a job in my field that at the very least will provide me experience that so many employers wanted. At most, I will have some promotional potential in the company, though after seeing the organizational structure after their massive layoffs right before I jumped onboard, there doesn’t appear to be much if any room for promotion. We’ll see.

    I totally understand the automated reply nonsense. When I was searching for a job, I wished that someone would actually tell me why I’m not being considered. No experience? Overqualified?

    The only thing I could say is to network. Find a professional organization in your field and attend their meetings. I am a member of my industry’s main professional group and although networking didn’t help me land my current job, it certainly didn’t hurt. If I kept at it long enough, I’m sure something would have come up from a fellow member. Applying online is absolutely horrible and more than likely, no one will ever see your resume let alone examine it. You are essentially sending it into a black hole.

    As for real jobs, there aren’t many. There only seem to be BS 100% commission insane sales jobs that require long hours and crappy pay under the guise of “you can make as much as you want.”

    Best of luck, Kathy. Hope things turn around soon!


    October 10, 2009 at 5:25 am

  60. I have “networked” until my fingers can’t type anymore, called with no return calls, meet people that are also unemployed to no avail and the ones that are employed are scared to talk to you, exercise daily, have been thru a couple of recessions and know the “ropes” Am in No company….and not a sales person.
    can’t even get a job that is lower than my skills., is there a city in the US that has jobs ? after Jan 1 my lease is up and can relocate…..LA is too full of self absorbed people that don’t communicate…..


    October 10, 2009 at 5:37 am

  61. Hello! For those of you who are unemployed but have your own transporation count your blessings. Now I am not only an unemployed professional with a Masters degree, but I have no transportation. My beloved car that I had for 5 years had an electrical fire and needed to be salvaged. I am not complaining because “Time and Unforeseen” occurences happens to all of us. In the meantime I have been devoting my time to a hobby that I really love while still job searching and that hobby is writing. I have written several childrens books and just recently posted a website/blog. I KNOW I WON’T MAKE MONEY FROM IT but thats not why I am doing it. WRITING IS THERAPEUTIC for me. I am also devoting my time to helping others. Sometimes being a good listener helps and it also takes your mind off of your worries. It gives you a sense of feeling needed and worthy. I know none of this advice will put money in your pockets, food on your tables, or pay your electric bill. I know how it feels because I hate when people talk to me like “Oh well, things will get better” but yet they have a good job and a reliable vehicle. Keep trying, find something that you like to do, whether thats cooking, writing, etc. This situation is so hard for me but I am not going to give up this time. I am tired of giving up! I’ll sell cupcakes if I have to.


    October 10, 2009 at 5:58 pm

  62. All I can say is that I’m in the same boat. It’s really discouraging and I feel like such a loser not being able to find a job. I just graduated in May with my J.D. and I have a B.B.A. I’ve tried everything with absolutely no luck, not so much as an interview. I’m really beginning to wonder what was the point of getting all of this education if all I can find is a job that I was qualified for before I graduated from high school.

    I’ve started to scoff at the advertisements that come on T.V. during the day that encourage people to go to college and continue their education. The thought pops into my head that yeah that way you can be rejected from more places.


    October 11, 2009 at 8:24 pm

  63. @ Jon Keep up the faith! Overqualified, underqualified – it all made no difference. I got next to NO RESPONSE except for my current low-level position.

    Keep plugging along and be open to “lesser” opportunities all the while keeping an eye open for something more in line with your education.


    October 17, 2009 at 5:42 pm

  64. I am in a similar situation with opposite circumstances to you. I am over-experienced, under-educated, and unemployed.

    I recently started my own blog. Please check it out and let me know if we could blogroll each other. (Take that any way you want…ha!)

    I hope to build The Unemployed Union up with not only reader comments but reader stories of their own adventures in unemployment. Maybe you could help me?

    Thanks! And – love your site. I can totally identify.


    October 29, 2009 at 11:57 am

  65. @ theeunemployedunion Glad to have some company. I think my days of blogrolling strange women might be over now that The Girl is around. HAHA! I kid, but I did add you to my links section. I expect that bag of hundreds on my front porch by Monday. 😉


    October 31, 2009 at 2:14 pm

  66. I have two masters degrees and am “all-but-dissertation” with my PhD. Ive been looking for f/t work for almost 2 years. All Ive been able to find is scattered p/t work that keeps me just above the poverty line. Have I really worked this hard, this long for nothing. In two months, I will have to move back across the country to move in with my elderly parents…that is, after I borrow money from them for gas. I have $58 to my name.


    November 21, 2009 at 5:05 am

  67. to be fair you sound like an ”overeducated” american cunt.

    the real deal

    November 23, 2009 at 9:26 am

  68. and you sound like an ignorant, bitter jealous moron.

    if you have no helpful tips to offer, just SHUT THE HELL UP!!!


    January 7, 2010 at 3:12 pm

  69. Apparently the illiterate figured out how to type on the keyboards in their group homes.


    January 9, 2010 at 2:47 pm

  70. Been unemployed since May of 2008. I don’t have any degrees, just a high school diploma. Worked odd jobs since I graduated high school in 2001. Telemarketing for a few years was the longest tenure at any of them. I just foresee no hope for a 26 year old guy like me with a high school diploma, if all of you people with degrees can’t find a job. This nation is going into a civil war. If you want to know what’s coming next watch 3 new videos by a guy named Pastor Lindsey Williams. He has an inside source saying that the U.S. Dollar will collapse by the end of 2011, and war is planned afterwards. If you’re interested in the 3 videos go to the links below :

    DVD 1 : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L_iSSLn9f_c

    DVD 2 : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4jAgjw4jfzg&feature=related

    DVD 3 : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XwJpBYqDB2s&feature=related

    It’s time to get educated about what’s going on in our country so we can fight back. May God bless us all in the times ahead. It’s about to get really bumpy!


    January 12, 2010 at 6:00 am

  71. I’ve been in the same situation for over a year, or a little more, I am now changing my field (the field of my past dreams, I was too naive at the time when I’ve chosen it). I am now trying to set up my own company, eventually try getting a job aside, I graduated last summer and the funniest part is that one of my friend has found a job in my field, while this person has never thought of working in it, just tried out and has been accepted.
    That’s good I am glad this individual has found something stable.
    But the funniest part is that me who has studied the required subject and so on, is not getting nowhere in this field where opportunities are normally wide.
    Oh well, life still goes on, it’s depressing yes, I’ve had ups and downs, but I don’t know how I’ll live if I don’t get anywhere. I tried in retail, I am rejected even if I worked in this field for five years.
    Nothing whatsoever seems to work out and I won’t go for low jobs, there is noway. I am even rejecting the idea of marriage from someone I hold dear to my heart, I am afraid he might think low of me because of that because he knows I have been looking for a long time but he said once that I am not giving it my best while I am! Nowadays if you go to places all they say is send us your cv or go on our website and so on… what more could I be doing?

    You should try to go abroad you might have more chance. Asia perhaps?


    January 15, 2010 at 8:57 am

  72. I need to vent. I am so glad I found this blog. Thank you. I graduated in 06 with a communications degree and a minor in art studio. I did’nt know what I wanted to do with my life, I was living in NJ graduated and decided to go to florida. Why… I don’t know, the market then was apparently “booming” but it was actually the peak of it crashing. I finally landed a job at a floral design company as an artist, I don’t really know why they hired me (perhaps my skirt and blonde hair has more to do with it ) but they did, I didn’t know any software in regards to design, so i was doing everything by hand. I tried to teach myself the design programs,and I was getting them done , but slowly, “the season” was coming and i guess the owners panicked. They needed someone with real experience. With no one to train me, and no money to hire some one to train me… I got totally shafted. They stopped giving me work and suddenly they had someone else doing it… eventually I just caught on and they kindly told me I was really talented and that they think I would be better in a more “work ethical” environment, I agreed being that everyone there drank on the job and I wanted to be somewhere where I could learn and exceed. I got the hint and respectfully stepped down. I couldn’t find any work there after, I would do side jobs at bars, etc …. and then I came back to my homestate michigan… BAD IDEA ! worse state to be in for employment. My dad let me work for him, but he and I fought everyday. I just couldn’t see myself working with him any longer. I decided then to go back to school. I got pregnant and I pursued getting ANOTHER degree in graphic design…since this was what made me lose my opportunity down in florida. I worked my butt off, I had my baby, and was back in class a day later, perfect attendance, perfect grades. I got out, with high hopes of finding work. I interviewed nonstop, I tried to find anything, I ended up interning for FREE just to get credible work on my resume. I then got a job at a audio and video production company after begging to get in for months… they brought me on…. and canned me three weeks later when they realized they had no work for me there. They had laid off about 100 people by the time I applied and left the company. Since then, I have been going on interview to interview, job to job … not knowing where to turn. I have a daughter to care for. My boyfriend is a musician and manages to make some credible income so we can at least buy groceries. I have two degrees, and my daughter is getting aid from the state. Its humiliating to be rejected from every interview I go on because im either OVER or UNDER qualified. the only work I get offered is high turnover bullshit sales jobs that LIE to people to get money. I don’t have it in me to lie to people, even if i am going hungry. I even tried to start my own company, called getbizzyonline.com I tried really hard to keep it alive, and I still resource to it to make some side work, with having a baby at my side, and not being able to make enough money to pay for daycare and the stress have on my head that causes me to crumble I just am falling apart. I worked this past week FOR FREE at a loan modification company trying to LIE to people to make a sale so I can at least pay my bills. I couldn’t close a sale and I just had enough today and gave up. I keep applying… everyday nonstop , craigslist, talentzoo, indeed, monster, careerbuilder, even googling companies nearby and emailing them…going DOOR TO DOOR to offices…oh that was great… I had a position offered to me and then they resented it literally 20 minutes later with no explaination. I aask myself, is it me? is it because im a girl? is it because I rub people the wrong way? do I have boogers out of my nose hanging there or something? I just dont know anymore. I was such a confident girl when I graduated (the first and second time) with goals, dreams, ambitions… and now I just feel… well, hopeless. I keep being told to consider relocating, but now I have a daughter and family & friends with children here and I just can’t see myself leaving everyone just to survive…but maybe its that time. But then I think , how can I relocate without any money or a promise of work? and what if I get shit on AGAIN once I jump on board? I wish someone could give me an answer…but everyone is always speechless after I tell my story. I just keep trying … and get disappointed. Its just a part of my life now I guess.

    Hopeless and desperate

    January 19, 2010 at 8:49 pm

  73. oh I just read Marks comment and I am watching the videos now. I just want to say I am aware of what is happening with the world. I haven’t heard of this guy but I am thrilled to watch what he has to say. first thing he states is that there is an elite who runs our world. It is so true. if you haven’t watched zeitgeistmovie.com I suggest you watch it. also google, bilderberg project and I know everyone knows about the theories of 2012. If you look at economical statistics and how the earth is changing… something is happening people. And look at all of us out of work… Like I said, I was working at a loan modification company… the banks are affiliated with the government, the government is affiliated with the federal reserve, the federal reserve is affiliated with the “elite” who are NOT the faces we know as our government. This is happening people. We are feeling it. I wish we could get a discussion forum going on this and start getting people to revolt before its too late. call me crazy, but I even had nightmares and dreams of this years ago before anyone was really announcing any of this. The banks are doing what zeitgiest claimed they would do, decreasing interest to shut people up only to punch it up again in the future and put everyone out of their homes and into slavery. its a scary world.

    Hopeless and desperate

    January 19, 2010 at 9:15 pm

  74. Well here goes,

    I am 33 years old and at the end of September I got Married, 1 week later the Company I work for announces they are going bust.

    Unfortunately I also signed a mortgage the same month for our first home together.

    And we have our first baby together due in March.

    I have gone from a £3125.00 a month salary. to £273.00 a month on the governments benefit scheme. Today I phoned a helpline to see if they could help me but they couldnt because we dont waste money but our living expenses are £2000.00 per month.

    I have applied for about 150 jobs in the last 8 weeks and nothing. I am now just one of several hundred people applying for each job.

    I have been told to “dumb down” my CV (you call it resume) to try and get a lower level job than the ones I used to do as my career experience could be seen as a threat to the person interviewing me.

    So, the other day I found myself being interviewed by a spotty teenager for a job paying £7.00 more a week than the government benefit payment.

    This teenager was telling me everything he knew about how the world of business works (which was so little he could have wrote it on the back of a postage stamp)

    So I just sat there and acted like he was enlightening me. What a joke. His speech went something like this;

    “I’ve worked out that everything in this world is about buying and selling” To make money you have to be either F*cking buying summin, or selling summin.

    It dont matter whether your a F*cking taxi driver or summin else, its all about buying an selling.”

    So I just sat there nodding at him, trying to look interested in this little nugget of wisdom he had departed onto me.

    And I thought to myself… what the f*ck am I doing here, and how did things get this bad in my life.

    Dear God, if for some reason you decide to invest in a PC and Internet access and happen to stumble across my story. Please help me.


    didn’t think so

    Rock Bottom in the UK

    January 26, 2010 at 5:07 pm

  75. @ Mark – Very aware of Lindsay Williams. Thanks for letting other readers know.

    @ Katy Sorry to hear your story but at least realize you’re in good company. I’ve often thought that people would think less of me the more time that passed and I was still unemployed. It’s that whole, “You STILL haven’t found a job?” line that gets me. Only thing I could suggest is to make some phone calls and possibly show up in person. A lot of companies don’t take well to this and you probably won’t even get anywhere, but it’s worth a shot. Good luck!

    @ Hopeless I HATED IT when people suggest I relocate. Why do I have to relocate? Why do I have to leave the area I love? Why do I have to leave my family and the people I care for to get a lousy job for $15/hr in another hellhole? FORGET THAT!

    @ Rock Bottom So sorry to hear about your situation. Keep the faith and keep trying! Don’t give up!!! I couldn’t help but laugh at the teenager story. Too funny! BEST OF LUCK!!

    OTHERS – Keep posting your comments here. Not for me but for others. It lets people know that THEY AREN’T ALONE!


    January 26, 2010 at 6:29 pm

  76. Thanks for the reply icantfindajob. I think I will visit this place more regularly. It’s nice to know other people can appreciate what I’m going through.

    What brought me here was a story you wrote that came up in the Google results. It mentioned graduates with dreams and ambitions, squirting more burger sauce in yet another big mac.

    Made me laugh, shame it’s true.

    Rock Bottom in the UK

    January 26, 2010 at 6:48 pm

  77. Best Website Ever! Bookmarked!

    To add, my wife is a Registered Nurse with a Bachelor degree in Nursing. She has 2 yrs experience in a foreign country and she’s bilingual. She can’t find a job in any hospital, nursing home, or a good home care.

    Thanks to the Nursing Shortage Myth.


    February 8, 2010 at 2:06 pm

  78. I too am glad I’ve found this site. I’m probably a little older than most,if not all of you on this site (54) which kills my job search even more. I have a BA degree, years of experience in a number of fields. Was in the computer industry for years and was axed several years ago during that slump. Jumped into the Real Estate business…no I didn’t make a killing, matter-a-fact 95% of the agents didn’t make a lot of cash…but because of the market “downturn” been barely “makin” it. People like me who have worked as independent contractors aren’t even counted in the unemployment figures. We are considered “self-employed” 100% commission, invisible to all the stats. There are a lot of us out here. Wish I was fired from a firm, this way I could at least get an unemployment check. Wellll, here I am, experienced, educated, too old to be hired and too far from SS (couldn’t live on SS anyway), and on top of all that, I used what I had in my 401k to keep my house and family fed. Back to square one again. Not sure what to do. Just gotta keep pounding the pavement, I guess? Get up every morning, get out looking and talking, staying connected to just to keep sane. We all got to hang in there. Keep the faith… really.


    March 1, 2010 at 10:11 pm

  79. Hello,

    I love this site, I wish there were more posts, even just reading other people’s stories. Maybe you can get guest writers, or a co-author who’s currently in the “I can’t get a job” situation?

    I went through two years of part time work searching for a professional position after I graduated, and had a boss who sucked, so of course I took the first job I was offered. That job started out wonderful, but over the course of a year there was 95% turnover, and the organization went to crap.

    At the end they hired a new director who showed me blatant disrespect and took away pretty much all my job responsibilities. Which most people would see as a plus, but I honestly think they did it to push me out of the organization.

    I was planning to quit whether I found a new position or not – it was that taxing on my mental health, which effected my physical health. They didn’t pay me enough to deal with what they were putting me through. Luckily I found a minimum wage job at a big retailer for the holidays, and they didn’t let me go after Christmas.

    Now I’m back in the rat race, applying to anything I’m remotely qualified for. Only problem is, like you I have an advanced degree (a specialized on in Library Science at that), and a little bit of knowledge in many things, but no specific specialization for more specific positions.

    The thing I hate most about the job search, is that most of the time I send out resumes and never hear anything back. Not even a “Hey we got your resume”, and what is even worse is that many places no longer accept phone calls related to positions. My parents just don’t understand the job market these days, and don’t think I’m trying hard enough, because I almost never get anything in the mail from any application.

    I hope you are doing well in the job you got! Also if you’re ever looking for a writer, I’ve got time on my hands and loads of “I can’t find a job” things to discuss, even beyond the background stories and complaints (that people have a right to get off their chests).


    March 5, 2010 at 1:38 pm

  80. Like most of you, I too am overeducated and unemployed. I have a couple of BS degrees (BS is about right), a MBA and a MS in CIS. The latter being from Northwestern University. I am also not receiving any replies the multitude of resumes I have submitted. Am I overeducated? Salary requirements too high? Not enough experience? The rhetorical questions lead me straight down the rabbit hole with stunning frequency. I’m also a 20 year veteran of the armed services. Shamefully, I’ve played this up trying to tug the strings to no avail. At this point, I’m at a loss and fairly angry about it. This is the system we’ve fought to protect? This is the myth our society chooses to perpetuate? It’s truly disheartening. Thanks for allowing me to rant. 🙂


    March 7, 2010 at 11:16 am

  81. I also have a Masters degree and I can’t find a job. I feel hopeless, for the past 4 months I’ve been living of my savings and soon if i don’t find meaningless, shitty job to at least pay the bills my savings will run out fast. I’m desperate. I feel like I went to college for nothing.


    March 10, 2010 at 7:03 pm

  82. @ Louise I’d be interesting in featuring your thoughts/posts. Send them to icantfindajob@gmail.com.


    March 13, 2010 at 10:53 am

  83. Thanks for this blog. After reading this, I don’t feel completely alone. I too have my MBA and have been unemployed for about 7 months now. Unfortunately I had a 3-year contract with my former employer that had expired. I have been struggling to find a job that fits my education ever since I got my BS, which was about five years ago. I am constantly wondering why I even bothered going to school, since I feel that it has gotten me nowhere. I am about $60,000 in debt between my BS and MBA. I, also, have an Associate degree as well. I can’t even get an interview. It is extremely frustrating when companies don’t even respond to your application and now they send automated rejection emails – no personal touch. Most companies have HR pre-screen applications and hiring managers only see acceptable candidates. So good candidates are overlooked and the hiring manager didn’t even see your resume. I try to stay positive and hope for the best, but it is down right emotionally draining at times. Thanks for this blog, it makes me feel much better knowing that I am not the only person in this predicament.

    You are not alone

    March 29, 2010 at 5:16 pm

  84. I’m so glad to have stumbled across this blog. Not that I thought I was the only one out there, but it’s nice to see it “on paper”. I have been unemployed since Oct. ’09 (exactly 6 months) due to company buyout/merger and have literally have had only 1 serious F2F interview. I’m been in medical device sales for 6 years with great successes, my resume is in the hands of 200+ recruiters, I’ve networked like hell, and nothing. Only a few crappy phone interviews that went nowhere.

    Many people think the medical field is still thriving and hasn’t been affected…that’s complete BS. It’s hurting badly as well. Companies and recruiters are nitpicking for the ‘perfect candidate’ b/c they CAN. So many of us qualified reps are out there unemployed, and there are so few GOOD jobs.

    Will this cycle ever end? I just don’t know. I recently had to move in with the in-laws to save some $, and my 3-yr old daughter and wife need me more than ever to provide. Wife has enjoyed the stay-at-home job, but she’s now knocking the dust off the resume. It’s scary to wake up each day having to face this reality of life. All I can do is continue to network, stay positive, and hug my wife and kid every day. The sun will rise tomorrow…

    Is this just a bad dream?

    March 31, 2010 at 2:50 pm

  85. I am definitely among the long-term unemployed. It will be 8 years come September 30. I am 42, educated, with a BA in an in-demand social science from one of the best Big 10 universities, a masters degree in a hard-core social-science-related discipline from a great Pac 10 university, and about 9 years of post-graduate work experience, including work at two nationally-known research institutions. My career track derailed 8 years ago when my contract ended.

    In the years since, I have interviewed for a number of different jobs, in the private and public sectors, and have qualified to be on job lists for high-level research positions with my state, my County, and my City, and have been found qualified for high-level six-figure positions with the federal government, but for one reason or another, have been unable as of yet to land a position, in some cases because I apparently wasn’t the very best candidate, and in other cases, the job lists exist, but the jobs themselves never seem to become available. At this point, I’m beginning to wonder if I ever will work again.

    I am also beginning to wonder what I did wrong, and how in the world it could have come to this. I thought I did everything that they told us to do…stay in school, do well in high school to get into a good college on a partial scholarship, get through college, go to grad school somewhere, then find a position somewhere… Apparently, that’s not enough these days, with the competition as severe as it has ever been, you almost need an “in” somewhere with someone, above and beyond the credentials and everything else.

    Each day I surf the internets and put out the resumes for positions which I am either well-qualified, over-qualified or possibly qualified, and the responses these days are fewer and far between than they ever were… but thank God the phone still does ring from time to time.

    I’m not ready to bag my educational background and work experience and start over from scratch…..and I’m not looking to dumb-down my CV either… but at this point, I don’t know what else to do or where else to turn.

    Un Employed

    April 6, 2010 at 4:42 pm

  86. I found your blog after searching “Why can’t I find a job?” into Google and I have to say it’s hilarious! I graduated with a bachelor’s degree in ’08 and I’m still looking for a “real” job. I’ve only been doing stupid retail jobs here and there and we all know that SUCKS. My boyfriend is just like you, he just got his master’s degree and everyone is telling him he’s overqualified and doesn’t have enough work experience. Well, just wanted to let you know you’re not alone and hopefully something will come our way soon (although it doesn’t look like it). Keep on posting! It’s very entertaining and keeps me from being depressed that I don’t have a job!!


    April 12, 2010 at 3:16 pm

  87. I love this site – nothing makes me feel better after I get home from a day of not being employed! Please keep your new years resolution and put more stuff up, it always makes my day! Have been unemployed for three months now and it is just out of control. Sad thing is that it seems like everyone else I know has the same story – it can be so depressing sometimes to talk to other people about it. I searched for unemployment blogs once on google and got so overwhelmed. There are only two sites I’ll read on the subject because of it: yours, and The New Opportunists – so please keep updating so my list doesn’t pathetically go down to one! 🙂

    – Lola


    April 24, 2010 at 10:02 pm

  88. @ You’re not alone It’s very frustrating to spend endless minutes, hours, days, and weeks submitting online job applications only to hear absolutely nothing! It’s discouraging and depressing. I often felt that if someone at the company actually saw my resume or spoke to me in person or on the phone, I would get a better response rate than submitting resumes to the online black hole. Keep your head up!


    April 26, 2010 at 9:27 pm

  89. @ Is this just a bad dream Best of luck in your searches. Just know that you are in good company! It’s very discouraging to hear about your extensive searches and ties with recruiters only to hear nothing back!


    April 26, 2010 at 9:28 pm

  90. @ Un Employed I reccomend you read my original post. I shared your exact same sentiments.


    April 26, 2010 at 9:31 pm

  91. @ Kristyn Good luck finding a “real job.” I don’t know that they exist these days anymore. Just retail, 100% commish bad sales jobs, and multi-level marketing. HAHA! But seriously I wish you and your BF the best – keep looking! What else can you do?


    April 26, 2010 at 9:32 pm

  92. @ Lola I’m trying to keep it! It’s just so hard with work and the job search for something better to actually find time to devote myself to something that doesn’t pay one cent. But I promise things will continue to get updated…the huge amounts of feedback I get from people is truly rewarding!


    April 26, 2010 at 9:35 pm

  93. hi. thanks for yr. blog. i haven’t had full time work since 2006. four yrs. i was in the mortgage biz. i knew mortgage and r.e. was going to go bad. i knew the economy was going to go bad. what goes up, must go down. nothing goes up forever. cycles. i made a big mistake. i fixed up my house, sold it, make good money. invested in stock market, lost it all. then could not pay my storage units, and they auctioned off all my stuff. i had lost my job, so couldn’t pay my bills. i didn’t qualify for unemployment because i was an independent contractor. so i no longer had a house, lost the money, lost all my possessions. went totally broke. bankrupt, but never filed. so i have lived off of little part time jobs. 1-2, sometimes 4 days a week. but mostly just weekends. handing out food samples at places like costco. the boss was a mean cruel lady treating us like slaves. she didn’t like me. so she cut me to 1 day in a month. 6 hrs. a day, $11/hr. for only one day in a month. she wanted to get rid of me, so it worked. i can’t live like that. so after applying to many jobs, sending out resumes, etc., i finally got very discouraged, depressed. i had no where to live. i was living out of a van for 1-1/2 yrs. and a jeep before that off and on. and with friends. finally it really got to me mentally. very badly. thankfully, some friends have let me stay at their house. but, it’s humbling to be 50, no job, no money, no place to live of yr. own, yr. credit is now totally messed up, the IRS is threatening to garnish yr. wages if you do find a job. frankly, it’s been very discouraging, especially after losing everything i had – in my storage. family pics, albums, sentimental things, ancestor stuff, and the usual material things. makes you feel pretty down. i have friends who seem to be ok. have jobs, making money, have homes, can eat out, etc. one couple i know have a 6 yr. old boy. the man and wife are struggling. was in education. teaching english as 2nd language to adults. he can’t survive on it. can’t pay his mortgage on his condo. the value dropped. trying to short sell. they had to borrow $ from relatives. i have to borrow $ from others too. humbling. the couple are moving out of state with his mom. another friend, a realtor/broker, had to move in with parents. hardly sold anyting in yrs. he has a degree. can’t find any other job. the older parents don’t understand. he’s in his 40s. another guy is 57, engineer, can’t find a job. self employed and independent contractors are in bad shape, as they don’t qualify for unemployment. so it’s sink or swim. if you don’t have friends or family to help, you’re dead in the water, broke, poor, destitute and homeless. it really hammers on yr. self esteem. i have a hard time getting motivated these days, now that i’m 50. i used to be very driven. but, too many major set backs really clobbered me severely. i wonder have any here lost their home, foreclosure, went homeless, moved in with family? i understand. i am Christian, but these experiences have really tested my faith, and i haven’t been as strong as i’d like to be. but, i often read stories of ppl less fortunate here or in other lands, earthquake victims, natural disasters, homes burned down, accidents, etc., and tell myself to be thankful. too bad one must look for a lot of bad stories to remind yr.self to be thankful. i wondered what would happen if i typed in, “i can’t find a job.” (?) i was interested to see how many others are doing the same. hang in there. this is my story. it’s true. it’s real. my bro. has his own business and is also really struggling. his customers are struggling, so he is too. we are in one of the top 3 worse areas in the U.S. for the economy, where we live. a cousin can’t find work also, educated, degreed, works in a coffee shop. over 37 mill. are getting food stamps. go get it if you can qualify. someone once said, if this is a bad economy, where are all the food/soup lines like in the depression? 37 million people getting food stamps is yr. soup line. you just don’t see it because they are all across America, buying food on the food stamp card, in a store near where you live, standing in line along with you. for a single person you’ll get about $200/mo. for food items only. the news stats like to say things are getting better. they post little upward ticks and blips on the financial radar, that is only temporary or seasonal. like right now, they’ll start saying housing sales are going up. well, they always go up in the spring and summer, and always go down in the fall and winter. as said, there’s many of us who worked as 1099, not W2, so we don’t qualify for unemployment. that’s what caused me to have such financial problems. excuse the post without paragraphs. just started typing. forgive me. all the best to everyone out there. hang in there. now is a time when family must come together and help one another. i don’t have family that can help (they’ve helped in other ways as they are struggling too), but thank God, i have some friends that have given me a place to stay. i got to update the resume again. yes, it gets very old. they say i’m over-qualified, too. some places just opeing and offering jobs/hiring, are getting like 600 people applying for 90 jobs. this is the kind of ratios we have here. one restaurant had like 200 openings, and had 5,000 apply. the real way to get a job now, is you got to have a friend in high places at that job. otherwise, you’re just an email in an over full box. it’s all about having friends, knowing people inside, who can get you in the door. you got to be able to bypass that HR watchdog. the odds are so stacked against anyone else. they call it the hidden job market. only those in the know, know about the job opening, or get the job. they only advertise it for legal reasons, to be an equal opportunity employer, EOE as they say. tired of playing the game, but what else can you do? imagine being 50 or older and still doing this? i feel for those with young families trying to make it. what will it be like for the children of today, in the job market in the future? thanks for letting me share. take care. “50 And Jobless.”

    50 and jobless

    April 29, 2010 at 7:02 pm

  94. Hi There,

    I just stumbled on your site, I frequent Washington Watch or Unemployed Friends. I too have been out sine May 08 and am 53..same feeling will I ever work again, luckily my husband is working but believe me, we have garnishments, always late and the FAMILY just doesn’t understand, WHAT DO YA MEAN you can’t get a job with all your experience !!!!! DAH, I am going send them here to this board…..Especially my oldest daughter who also has dual masters going on 30 and she just thinks SHE IS GOING to get something, granted she works PT and has a plan, but I told her to check out overseas too, since we all should be on a SLOW BOAT to CHINA LOL thats where most of our jobs are, I also know about the Bilders, 2012 and you can just “FEEL” what is happening around us, anyway thank you for this board and I will be sure to pass it along….we are on Food Stamps too, use the food banks, we have a clinic here if you qualify, and anything else I can find. Am in Northern MI and everyone knows the situation, I couldn’t believe Brian Williams on the news last nite about BP, everyone “OUT OF WORK THRU NO FAULT OF THEIR OWN

    Mary Ellen

    June 2, 2010 at 10:42 am

  95. CONT.

    What about the UNEMPLOYED ELSEWHERE!!!!!! Where is OUR STORY…..UGH…I am going to e-mail him too…thanx again for your site!!!!

    Mary Ellen

    June 2, 2010 at 10:44 am

  96. I am so happy to have found this site!!! I too am overeducated and unemployed. I currently hold a couple of BS degrees (BS the operative term), a MBA and enrolled in a MS program at a top tier school. Before anyone screams at the top of their lungs to get out of that program, I must confess it is my ONLY source of income (debt). I apply for several jobs everyday but have received very few responses. Those that I have received have been VERY disappointing. I have approximately 120k in student loan debt that will likely never be repaid if this situation persists so why not increase it? What’s the point of this whole exercise? The myth of going to college to get a decent job is exploding in our faces and we are left with all the debt of chasing the bogus dream. Now what? Obviously I am sickened by the system and would really prefer to leave it but how? Where? UGH!!!!!!


    June 4, 2010 at 6:18 pm

  97. Hey,
    My name is Matt, I am 20 years old and a junior in college. I recently started a job search website called PlentyofResumes.com. We were just featured on killerstartups.com: http://www.killerstartups.com/Web20/plentyofresumes-com-a-new-way-to-find-a-job. Just to give you a general run down of what the site is all about, we are a free job posting and job search website for both employers and job seekers alike. Right now I am contacting blogs such as yourself trying to get the word out. It is my hope that either we could exchange links on our respective blog rolls or that we could each do a write up of the other site on our blogs. Currently I am waiting to get 5,000 registered job seekers before I start attracting employers to the website, which should not be difficult seeing as it all is completely free to everyone. Anyways I really enjoyed reading through your blog and hope to hear back from you.

    Thanks for your time,



    July 25, 2010 at 12:52 pm

  98. After only reading the first page of your website, I am glad I can say I found someone who has the same feelings as I do. Applying for jobs is a nightmare! I’m convinced that online applications never make it anywhere, it sucks being made to feel that despite all your hard work you’re inadequate, and it’s tiring feeling like you were just a few minutes too late to the party (i.e. “That position has been filled, but we have this even more degrading, lesser paying position available.”) As someone from Gen Y I’m tired of people only wanting to hire me cause they don’t have to pay me as much or not wanting to hire me because they watch MTV and are convinced all 20 year olds are lazy asses. I worked hard damn it and I’d like to start seeing the fruits of that labor!


    August 23, 2010 at 6:15 pm

  99. OMG! I stumbled on this site…I have never been out of work in my life and I’m scared…I moved to another state and quit a good job to get married, my husband has a good job and I can’t find one to save my life-I have a B.S. Degree and returning for another degree- I feel worthless and am even thinking of moving back to my hometown (the unemployment rate is 5% less than where I’m at). I feel like I should go to school to be a nurse because everyone tells you that’s where the jobs are-


    August 25, 2010 at 9:28 am

  100. …I graduated this spring and almost needless to say I have been unemployed for 4 1/2 months. I’m just another cliche.

    …I’m going to be 100% honest here. The BABYBOOMERs are one of the most SELF RIGHTEOUS generations western civilization has ever produced.

    …Imagine for a second you were born in 1950. Most people were married, had children, and a house by the time they were 25 years old. Having all those things requires a stready stream of $$$. The babyboomers could land great jobs with nothing more than a high school diploma. REAL wages and benefits were way more than they are today. Many babyboomers ridicule gen-x/gen-yers for our sense of entitlement? We worked so hard to get these degrees and still we can’t get the jobs you got without even spending one second in a university classroom! All of that work and must of use can’t even dream of getting married, having kids, and buying a house. The luck ones are stuck living with our family being treated like bums, the unlucky are homeless or have to enlist in the armed forces.

    …it just sucks I have to wait 10 years for these old farts to retire and move to Florida/Arizona.


    I had a dream...

    September 12, 2010 at 9:40 pm

  101. @icantfindajob,

    Thanks for starting this blog. It makes me feel better that I’m not the only one out there. I recently graduated with a BS in May. I’ve been job hunting since April and I can’t find anything. The job I did interview for couldn’t really tell me details about the job or pay and it was going to be at least 60 hours a week. I’m not lazy, it’s just that I have a family outside of work. Since then I haven’t gotten another interview. =(

    Now I’m considering going back to school for an MS in Counseling. It can be used with my degree or maybe just on its own. But I wonder, is it even the right move? Will thousands of dollars go to waste? Will going back to school only put me at the start of the circle of doom once again?

    Me Neither

    September 20, 2010 at 9:02 pm

  102. I agree with virtually everyone. A 50 year old in shape man with an MA in 2000 and an MBA in 2008 with now 50 k in debt and growing because I cannot pay it back. yes, what a joke. And Eric you are right about the older generation of the 50’s- they had every opportunity and they had power and passed immense legislation to help themselves for their entire lives. The welfare state and high taxes are chasing our jobs overseas. But it is not our fault we are unemployed or underemployed- I work for a golf course for $8 an hour. What an ROI! Many in HR cannot judge talent and history is replete with examples but now we are loaded with poor judges of talent running the show. My only sick thought is I may go back to school to get a certificate in Accounting- why not add more debt? Sick- college is a complete farce and a fraud scam of tremendous proportions. People are catching on – the other fraud is the government backed loan system- without access to these high loans schools would drastically have to reduce their prices and one may pay as they go. Also there was a time when I could get a job by going to the business- now they tell you that you cannot enter. I have had 35 jobs in my life and sometimes more than one at a time but now it seems like I have suddenly turned into a bum. Good luck to all.


    September 30, 2010 at 9:13 pm

  103. Job searching is really tough for some out there right now. The truth is there are several forms of discrimination at play; age and employment being the biggest.

    With the downturn in the economy, many companies took the opportunity to package out many of their high paid and long term people to trim the bottom line now and for the future. This unfortunately has left a lot of mature and experienced people looking for work.

    The new (and disturbing) trend is employment discrimination. We only want to hire people who already have a job. Sad but true

    The best advice I can give you is to really look at your job search strategy. If what you are doing right now is not working – change it. Look at the jobs you are applying for, your resume, how you are applying and if you are getting the interview, the things you are saying.

    Corey Harlock

    October 28, 2010 at 10:20 am

  104. After months of looking for a job post-finishing my Masters degree, I realized that a)I did not have any experience in my field b)I am over-educated c)I can not get a retail min.wage position with a Masters degree. I have started sending out resumes that do not have all of my education included but I am still sitting on my sofa with my fingers crossed only sometimes answering phone calls from friends because I don’t feel like explaining that I still don’t have a job yet, don’t feel like hearing the “it takes time, something will happen” bit and certainly do not feel like going out–I am unemployed and have no money.
    Of course, now Christmas is coming which might help to find a temporary position but then there are also people to buy gifts for, line of credit and student loan payments. I am starting to wish that I would have stopped at the Bachelors degree.
    As I am finally reaching some sort of tipping point, I typed the words “overeducated underqualified and unemployed” into google and alas…I am not alone. I was sure that I wasn’t but that doesn’t make it easier. I am leaving this comment to let you know that there is yet another person in the same boat. I will cross my fingers for you too.


    November 10, 2010 at 12:38 pm

  105. I stumbled upon your website after having a crying fit over my current employment situation and googleing “why can’t I find a job”.

    It’s near insane how similar our situations are (and I suppose many other’s). I’m not sure if this comforts me or makes me more upset.

    I won’t even bother with saying “just wait it out” or “its bound to happen” or even “best wishes”. That means absolutely nothing to someone who is completely miserable all because they worked tirelessly hard for an education with a tremendous price tag, always believing that at the end, things would be marvelous and wonderful. We’d be successful and respected, enjoying life and moving forward.

    I would have been better off working since I was 18 and moving up through the company. Heck, I’d have the same job just without the $65,00 student loan debt!


    November 11, 2010 at 12:48 am

  106. I’m not quite in the same boat as a lot of people here since I’m employed but like many here, I’m employed way below my so called qualifications or potential. I’m underemployed and frustrated. I graduated in late ’06 with finance degree, since then lost my passion for it and completly gave up my pursuit of white collar position. It took about 10 months before I got my first job after graduation and it was very low on a payscale and satisfaction but it did give me few ideas, allowed me to pick up new skills and I got to know some good people. There were number of times when I wanted to say !@#$ it and go home for good but I rode it out until compnay went out of business. After that I scooped up a job with a local landscaper which paid more than the previous one but there are no benefits and it’s killing my back. Fact is that with all the bills I can’t save anything and in the long-run it’ll ruin my finances if I were to keep it.

    Over the past four years I applied to about 150 places with custom, carefully thought-out cover letters, networked my ass off and tried everything under the sun. Getting internship was impossible in my field. Some blame goes to me for not having a job that I always wanted, but from a perspective of time, I’m not sure I’d be better off had I done slightly more. I’m sickened by the recruiting system, staffing agencies, their greed and lack of respect and manners (not all). I’m sickedned by people and institution claiming that college graduates make more over their lifetime. I’m sick and tired of universities and institutes pushing their programs onto people and claiming to be non-profit institutions. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think my time was completly wasted in college. I picked up few skills and learned few things but I’m not getting the return on this pricy investment and people considering higher eduacation should be made aware of that possibility. I believe if you are motivated enough, you can get the same knowledge for free at public library. If you hang around some bright, successful people for a little bit, you will learn more than you ever will in school. Only recently I got an idea for my own business and only time will tell if it’s a good one. I’m done with job search, putting on suits and ridiculous interviews. I too considered going back to school for masters but today is not the time to do it.

    I feel the pain of everybody here even though I’m currently working. I always knew I wasn’t the only person unemployed or underemployed but it always seemed like everybody around me had careers going for them, relationships thriving, was planning their home purchases or going on vacations to some exotic places while I had sweat dripping down my nose. Despite me having a job, it seems like I missed out on a lot. I have a lot of catching up to do.

    I always think of all the graduates without work and what they gotta go through. And now that I read all the posts above, I can’t help but to think that a lot of bright people’s talents went to waste and many of us will loose passion and desire to make things better as time goes on. I hope things get better in this country. No one benefits when milions of people are out of work for long. Good luck to everybody.


    December 1, 2010 at 11:15 pm

  107. I don’t know what to say. All I feel and wanted to say I read it all over this place. Everything that happened and is happening to me is listed here among all of you. I, too, out of frustration googled “I can’t find a job” and found myself here. I have been out there in the wilderness of looking for a job since March 2010. I went overseas for almost two years to save something for my family. Now I am watching what I have suffered for two years going away slowly. My blood and tears for two years is melting away. I have sent more than 300 resume and got only 3 interviews. I have no reason to wake up in the morning. I am just another mouth my wife needs to feed. I have wished I die many times a day. I have a master’s degree and over 13 years experience in this land of opportunity. Sometimes I think the fact that I have a middle eastern origin has anything to do with my condition, but I see all of you in the same situation as myself. I had the same situation after 9/11 and managed to survive after 6 months although I had to start from scratch again; but this time it does not look good so far from what I read everyday. Employers do not care to even get back to you, thanks God some are sending rejection notes. The majority go into the abyss of the black hole. Happy Holidays all and I hope some, if not all, will get a good gift from Santa “A Job”


    December 3, 2010 at 8:06 pm

  108. Nice to find this site if only to vent. I have a masters degree in Mechanical Engineering and am a graduate of Georgia Tech. I managed to get a job before my graduation and went on to work with a great company for about 15 months. Then I was told my visa would not be renewed and I had to move back to Europe. Now I am looking for a job and its not looking good. The economy is worse off in Europe that in the US. I am hoping I get a job anywhere, and I mean anywhere. Without any income I am feeling pretty worthless. I had saved some money but its not gonna last. I dont have the experience to get into a career where they demand so 5 or more years experience. I may end up applying for graduate jobs and dont mind that really, but I am over 30 and I dont know how else to get into the job market. Educated to a good level, got some decent experience with a great company, but still cant get a job.

    absolutely fed up

    January 7, 2011 at 4:19 pm

  109. Wow, quite a bit of feedback here from similar unemployed and educated. Nice to find so many in the same place. You always hear about “everyone in the country is in your same place” but it doesn’t help to be surrounded by employed friends while you had to move back in with the roommates named Mom and Dad.

    I find myself turning into a giant snark monster filled with rage (and alcohol) but mostly rage at the way things have turned out for recent grads not to mention older workers forced out into a totally different work force from when they got their start 30 years ago.

    I have even given up on jobs in the US and focused on anything in the land of maple syrup and hockey or over-seas. Too bad that the US economy dictates just about every economy and puts a dent in other job markets.

    Nice blog. I will keep following. Hopefully you will land something soon.


    January 16, 2011 at 11:52 pm

  110. Wow!I’m happy to stumble upon this blog! I know that misery likes company, but it helps to know I’m not the only grad school grad who can’t find a position in one’s chosen profession.

    I too, have had to shell out money for a state license. Friends with good intentions keep saying, be patient, something will break.

    I’ve tried applying for assistance, and unemployment, but only get $126.00 per month. No insurance, and I have a daughter to support. What are we truly waiting for?

    I even tried counseling, but all I got was lip service and the counselor said, maybe you need to leave the state. Is it better elsewhere?


    January 17, 2011 at 8:12 pm


    If you’re will to go to China, I might have a job lead for you. Comment here if interested.


    January 17, 2011 at 8:15 pm

  112. First the Employment agancies are LIEING to the unemployed about what they will realy be earning once they have their claws in you. I hear it everyday. Tell you $15. an hour then once your on the job..Whoa and Behold you hear, “Oh, We were mistaken your payscale is $11. p h…Sorry..” Second getting help is only for the minorities and illegals in the USA. NOT for American Citizen White middleclass people who have been robbed of work, raped by unfair work policies, discriminated against because of AGE, Being too smart , too dumb, don’t look right, kicked down and beaten up by government and bussinesses and employment agencies. Employers are having a field day with the abuse of the unemployed and it is a disgrace upon this coountry..SHAME ON THE AMERICAN GOVERNMENT FOR ALLOWING THIS UNLAWFUL TREATMENT TO CONTINUE..


    January 27, 2011 at 4:50 pm

  113. I just moved to Florida, I have 2 bachelors and an MBA. Been looking for about 3 weeks. I send about 9 resumes out a day.One day I nailed 18 Resumes out. Im at the computer all day and into the night, is this normal? I mean at some point, I should find something statistically speaking?, what do you guys think?

    Is that normal sending out that many resumes?


    February 3, 2011 at 10:02 pm

  114. @SAM It’s absolutely normal. There are just so few jobs with so many applicants that actually getting a response is incredibly difficult. Plus, a lot of times companies post jobs as a formality or to adhere to their company’s internal policies when they already know who they will hire for that particular position.

    Keep applying and PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE let us know your progress.


    February 10, 2011 at 3:44 pm

  115. I sit here with a BS in Biology and lots of different experiences. Graduated in ’09, I’ve been “maintaining” by getting week-to-week contracts and was picked up for a political campaign last summer. Now almost 10 weeks removed, I am back in the same boat: unemployed, living at home. The solution?

    Move to Africa

    It’s apparent I am worthless living here in the U.S. “Go back to school, get a law/mba degree,” my parent’s say. Why? So I can be 80k+ in debt and in the same scenario as I am today? I’d rather be over there doing something and helping those less fortunate than on my knees working (ultimately) for the crooks in Washington and NYC.

    Things aren’t going to get better anytime soon. I’m almost 24 and do not see the U.S. rebounding any time soon, or in the manner many expect, by any means. The United States will look like Egypt in 3 years, once there’s basically an entire generation of youth out-of-work, food and commodity prices climb, and the education bubble bursts (look at all the people on the board with advanced degrees that can’t find anything to do). The last of the mortgage loans still are still yet to-be-defaulted-on, so the value of property here will continue to decline. I’d rather have had the “hurricane” hit in ’08-’09 w/out bailouts and the like and have been rebuilding. Instead, we’re easing our way into the hole we were destined to fall into, prolonging the eminent disaster that awaits.

    At least in developing countries, the education one has acquired is valued to a greater extent than in nations already developed. I may only make 20k a year, but I’ll get by. Hopefully, by 27 the global crisis will have begun to subside, and I’ll be able to return and have opportunities to contribute. But for now, I’m selling the idea of looking on the brightside of things here in the U.S. and think that “I can do anything if I put my mind to it,” which simply isn’t true anymore.

    I hope I’m wrong about all of this.


    February 10, 2011 at 6:21 pm

  116. Graduated 2008 in California, the epicenter of the housing crisis at the eve of the financial crisis. Nobody would hire me! Dismayed, I traveled to south America thinking things would be dandy by the time I got back. FALSE! Now it’s been a year and i’m trapped in poverty. Que horible!

    Been falling in and out of depression for a year, trying to get some sense of what’s going on. I am at a point where just getting one resume out a day is a huge accomplishment.

    I have severely reduced my expectations in life. Tomorrow, I interview with Target. I would have never considered them when I was in the university, but now my future seems to hinge on this retail job.


    February 15, 2011 at 12:00 pm

  117. I love this blog! I’ve been wanting to post for a long time now because I can relate to so many of the stories.

    I too have a “useless master’s degree.” However, instead of being in my early 20s/30s and just starting out, I feel the pain of being a 36 year old with two kids and a mortgage and a family to help support while I’ve been dashing back and forth between random work, “consulting” jobs, etc. I’ve now come to the point where my lack of steady work in my field is compromising my ability to provide a stable and comfortable middle class lifestyle for my kids, the MAIN REASON I EVEN WENT TO GRAD SCHOOL IN THE FIRST PLACE! LOL

    My master’s is in Library Science, a field in which jobs are constantly being cut, etc. Libraries are closing and society views librarians as useless or redundant in a world where “all you need is Google,” etc.

    After I got my master’s I spent the first five years of my career working in my field making good money, and in PART TIME positions. I always wanted to work part time while my husband worked full time because it would allow me to be with my kids but still hold “professional” level work at decent pay.

    Well, after our Upstate New York library system had major budget cuts about six years ago they closed libraries and laid off librarians, etc. I never again found a good stable part time job at 18 dollars an hour or more. It was an adjustment. I did pick up a part time teaching and tutoring position at a small local college, but the hours and pay are sporadic… plus I’m in over my head as I was never prepared for teaching.

    Some research and writing “consulting” piecework jobs came my way, but again the hours and pay were inconsistent.

    I too had applied for office jobs for YEARS only to be told I was “overqualified” or ignored. I also took temp agency jobs to fill in the gaps. Now I am working two days a week as a secretary MAKING A MEASLY TEN DOLLARS AN HOUR. My husband’s paycheck isn’t enough for me to stay home with the kids. I am still looking for something stable but who knows how long that will take. The lower level pay hits home when I see other families planning trips to Disney, signing their kids up for extra lessons, moving into bigger homes, etc. Don’t get me wrong, I’m NOT a “keeping up with the Joneses” type at all, but the reality of having to give up “typical middle class” activities kinda hits home.

    Plus many of the families who can afford middle class luxuries like trips to Disney etc. are the people who DID NOT GO TO GRAD SCHOOL! Therefore they have MORE JOB STABILITY AND LESS STUDENT LOANS. These are people who got a job right out of two or four years of college, or heck even just high school, and have now worked their way up enough to job stability and increasing pay.

    Now working a ten dollar an hour secretary job that I could have probably right right after a two or four year degree makes me realize how much time and money I apparently WASTED going to grad school!


    February 22, 2011 at 8:58 am

  118. what I want to know is how long it took others to actually find work? how long for them to get sucessful


    I have had a few calls, but those were basically jobs with too much sales and commission based. I have had few psychological survey but these jobs were like 11/ hour jobs so what’s the story there? and finally I had an interview where the interviewer I think was only going through it because upper management want to keep HR busy and there were no real positions opening up. thats what I think at least, they were vary rude and didn’t talk about the job at all, and kind of discussed how their new company wasn’t doing very well. In other words they were wasting my time

    so much for that I apply to like 5-10 jobs a day it’s a blur I have easily done 250 in the past Month

    I have 2 bachelors , in arts and science and an MBA with additional coursework in both finance and marketing.

    I have had 5 jobs so far, although non related to my post graduate field

    you’d think this would be easier…..


    February 24, 2011 at 10:13 pm

  119. I put my career on hold and moved from the west coast to the midwest to care for my dad before he died in 2008… I actually quit my job, gave zero notice, sold a condo and drove across the county in two weeks. Then while caring for him I went to night school, got an MBA and an MS and passed level I of the CFA and am currently working on level II of the CFA. I am now currently unemployed for a year. I have been going to every networking event under the sun. I have over 800 resumes out on the market! I have been networking on linkedin. I have been literally showing up at companies and dropping off resumes. The most common response I get?? I am over qualified, over educated and don’t have any recent experience that is applicable to the current environment. I’m getting close to giving up here. Good deeds do not pay off anymore. Good luck everyone.


    March 3, 2011 at 9:17 am

  120. My thoughts go out to everyone on here. Keep posting and let us know of each other’s progress. I think this forum could become a good “support group” for all of us dealing with similar issues.

    @SAM, yes sales and commission-based jobs often target the “overeducated” and otherwise hard to employ and I can tell you exactly why. I actually had a temp job for place that recruited commission based sales agents. Let me tell you, they will try to recruit ANYONE and EVERYONE simply because they need to get their numbers up and that is one area where they don’t care if you are “overeducated.” Actually, they like overeducated people because they figure you would use your extra experience to bring in more money for them in the end. Best of luck to you and keep trying. Keep us posted.

    @Liam, sorry first for the loss of your dad. It is hard after you have sent out dozens up to hundreds of resumes and not get a response. I feel it too. It’s like a kick in the stomach after all your hard work in school. And to be told you are “over qualified” is another kick in the stomach, often while you see people with less than half of the education moving up the ladders and getting better positions and better pay. Again, good luck to you and keep us posted.

    @Everyone, all of us thought we were doing the right thing by going on for more education and that we’d be “safe” or “golden” in the job hunt because, who could turn such and educated person down, right? Well, we were sadly wrong. I think part of it is the vicious job market in the horrible current economy. But in other cases, like I mentioned in my last post, I see too many people with little or no “formal” educations or high end degrees end up better off than us because they decided to forgo education and instead just work… and while we had our ivory tower fantasies of being better off in the long run, we instead end up on a lower rung jobwise. It’s hard. We know a few people with only HIGH SCHOOL DIPLOMAS who are making upwards of 60 grand a year just because they got into stable fields in their late teens or early 20s and have since gained leverage and promotions and pay raises…

    Yet here I am, with a “graduate degree” making 10 dollars an hour in an essentially entry level job… (Which is hard with a family to help support and two kids to feed and clothes, plus the STUDENT LOANS.) Turned down or rejected for each “professional level” job I had applied for over the past few years….

    Again, everyone post on your progress and keep your chins up!


    March 5, 2011 at 10:59 pm

  121. I graduated September 2010 and have yet to find a job in my field. It is particually frustrating because I’ve received offers from employers in the sales or customer service area. I have experience in those areas because I needed to take those kind of jobs to put myself through school. I hated every minute in those jobs and would rather kill myself then go back to them on a permanent basis. I currently work tele-marketing part-time just to have some kind of income…I live at home.

    Anyway, it feels so pointlessly to get an education only for your “job scope” to be the same as it was before your degree. What was the bloody point?


    March 17, 2011 at 2:53 pm

  122. So….I went to undergrad and received dual degrees and double minors. I could not find a job to save my life, though I’ve been working since I was a child (paper route). Everybody said I didn’t have enough experience, nevermind the fact that I was more than capable to complete the tasks required for the job because of what I learned while in school. Luckily enough, I’d landed an online tutoring job during undergrad, so I continued doing that, even though the pay was crap and the chances for advancement were slim. I ended up going back to school and got triple masters degrees, all the while still tutoring, but still racking up debt. So, now I have a total of 5 degrees, I’m a few months beyond a year post grad, I’ve been on 3 interviews, and not a single one has worked out. I was not aware of all that I was getting into my going into my field; I’ve shelled out a lot of money for licensures and certifications required in order to practice, and so far, I’m seeing absolutely no return. The only reason I have a job right now is because I’m still tutoring with the same company and have added on teaching. I hate my job. There are days when it’s a struggle to get out of bed. There are days when I can’t see myself as anything but a failure. I feel like I came from nothing and sacrificed so much so that I could make a better life for myself, and nothing is panning out. I think about the trips I didn’t take because I wanted to save money and the nights I didn’t go out to get that extra bit of studying in or to get a head start on an assignment. Sure, my grades were great, but now my whole past is full of education and no memories. I thought it was an equal exchange; sacrifice now so that I can have what I want later. Well, I’m back home at my mom’s, struggling, wondering if I just wasted the last 10 years of my life. My life is worse now than it was before I went to school.


    March 20, 2011 at 11:52 pm

  123. @annoyed, I wish you the best. It sounds like maybe you are still young if you just graduated. Have you tried an employment agency? Even if you just take a fill in job covering someone’s medical leave, etc. it might help out a bit in the meantime. Also, temp agencies tend to be more forgiving of people who are “over” or “under” qualified and are happy to place you so you can skip the mailing out resumes and going on interviews… Just be careful to find a good employment agency, as some are sketchy or don’t actually find work.

    Meanwhile, I am sick to my stomach over my 10 dollar an hour secretary job, that I picked up for two days a week. I want to quit it already because the bosses are absolute jerks and they snap at me and insult me! Plus, the one boss keeps an open bottle of liquor on his desk! I think I’m too old to put up with being treated like crap, but if I quit then I’ll be back in the same boat of looking forever and not being able to find anything.

    I’m 36 with two little kids and my husband doesn’t make enough for me to stay home. My useless master’s degree is biting me in the butt… I want to cry or throw up every day. I’ve actually started seeing a counselor again.

    My heart goes out to everyone on here. Keep us posted.


    March 21, 2011 at 8:06 am

  124. I just wanted to thank you for sharing your thoughts and helping me feel like I am not the only one who is suffering trying to get a job. Once I completed my master’s degree, I decided to stay at home to take care of my girls-that was 2 years ago. Now that both of my girls are in school, I decided to find a job. Well I couldn’t at first because I needed a license to counsel, well I studied hard and past the license and now I have to find an internship and a supervisor to supervise my 3,000 hours-can you believe that. Now that I have a temp license, the excuse is that I have no experience. I feel so sad and depressed,maybe I should see a counselor.

    Erica Gallardo

    March 29, 2011 at 1:04 pm

  125. @Erica: I’m in the same boat. I also went to grad school for counseling, and was under the misconception that I needed to have a job in order to apply for provisional licensure. I graduated 12/2009, and almost a year after the fact, found out that this information was incorrect. I now have one provisional licensure and am in the application process for a second, but the lack of experience is really crippling me. I’ve had several scary moments where I was really depressed and couldn’t motivate myself to continue trying, because it seemed so pointless. What made it worse was that the bulk of the people around me have not traveled my path or a path similar to mine, so they have no idea what I’m going through. Though I take no consolation in the struggle of others, it’s nice to see that there are others that relate to what I’m going to and that we can be supportive of each other.


    March 30, 2011 at 11:23 am

  126. Wow… I don’t know if reading everyone’s comments has made me feel better or worse. If nothing else, I completely identify with the over-educated/under-experienced plight. I earned a BA in English (without teacher certification “to fall back on”) and then went to grad school for sociology. I entered into an “applied” sociology program (which only sounds more useful than a “regular” sociology degree). I graduated with my MA in May of 2010 and have since been adjuncting and waiting tables. Adjuncting would be ok except the pay is miserable, and I kind of want to go play in traffic every day I have to wait tables. I’m still applying to any job for which a soc degree might be REMOTELY relevant. So far I’ve received rejection letters from almost all of my prospects. I’ve come to realize that sociology is really more of a worldview than a career choice… anyway I appreciate being able to relate to other people going through a similar situation.


    April 6, 2011 at 4:11 pm

  127. Hi Jessica,

    Just wanted to let you know that I do have that English teacher certification “to fall back on” . . . in three states. I also have two other certifications, a Master’s degree, 6 1/2 years of classroom teaching experience, 4 years of program coordinator experience and a whole lot of other experience in education and human services as well in as freelance writing. I have been on unemployment for 7 months and have applied for anything I may be remotely overqualified for and/or underqualified for. Nothing is offered and if it is, it pays less than day care would cost. Just saying.


    April 13, 2011 at 5:46 pm

  128. You say “overeducated myself out of the job market as I have minimal real-world experience”

    I possess a BS Degree in Health Services Administration, am a SWF, have great medical and biomedical sales experience but have been unemployed for going on 3 years.

    I don’t even know what to ask, say or think, but if anyone has advice for me, it will be greatly appreciated.

    I apply for any and Everything I see that may be of relation to my sales experience, traits, etc. Yet the only responses I receive are “we’ve reviewed your file and found more qualified applicants”…. I will make it somehow, someway, but likely Not with the help of dastardly corporations!


    April 18, 2011 at 10:23 pm

  129. Hello, all!

    I thought I should add my perspective from someone who doesn’t have a Masters, nor a BA, only an AA degree, that’s if I pass the dreadful calculus class… I have been waiting tables for 12 years now, on and off. I am so sick of it, but it seems like I can’t get a job doing something else in an office or whatever, that I’m still considering waiting tables at this point. Talk about options! I applied for so many jobs and have gotten 1 interview at a bar. Didn’t get the job, not sure if I wanted it, anyway. I applied for bank teller, receptionist, office assistant, gardening, bilingual (Spanish) whatever help, travel assistant, personal assistant, library assistant, even tried temping agencies etc. It turns out I’m not good enough to file papers for a temping agency… Whatever I can use my knowledge and common sense to, I applied to it. I worked as a studio assistant for a photo business, so I’m relying on that as my office experience and on the internship I did at UIC Hospital Volunteer Services.
    Mind you I’m in Chicago, so you might think big city, blah, blah, blah, but I can’t get a freaking job even waiting tables and I am good at waiting tables, although I hate it. So, I’m thinking of moving the hell out of this city unless I find something soon.
    So, my point is, overqualified, underqualified, it doesn’t matter. It’s horrible either way because nobody cares you have potential and are capable, nobody will give you a chance. It’s disheartening. But in the meantime, I have to pay rent and feed myself without any source of income. And I’m not winning that lottery, either.
    One more thing. I was reading something about how there are jobs out there, but the problem is the people who apply for them are not good enough or don’t know how to sell themselves to the employers. Really? I can tell you my former employer has been hiring the worst waitresses ever while she fired the ones who were actually good. Ok. Enough about waitressing. That’s all.


    April 21, 2011 at 3:37 pm

  130. I work for a local government agency … I have NEVER seen such underhanded politics that are out-right MEAN! I have my MBA with InfoSec. You’d think that they could use (pormote) someone like me … but HELL no! They would rather promote someone WITHOUT a degree, certifications or exprience over me!

    They even placed me in a dangerous situation that if I wasn’t smart about it could have possible cost me my life! Then they demote me becuase of the injury I sustaned from the work they gave me … but it is not considered a “demotion” becuase I retain my title and pay-grade … Whoopy-F’n-Do!

    Our department only has a handful of people with masters degrees – we lost two within a year. I can’t speak for the other one or two remaining but I know I want to leave!

    Overeducated Gov worker

    April 25, 2011 at 11:56 am

  131. So I stumbled upon this post while trying to find a job. Here is my story: I graduated from law school in December 2009 and sat for the February 2010 bar. I began searching for jobs about a week after the bar thinking that it would take me at the most 6 months to find a job. I did internships in law school, worked as a research assistant. But yet, my contacts fell through and as of today I have been unable to find a job. I applied to over 186 jobs last year and had two interviews. Before moving I did contract work for an attorney who I found to be unethical and failed to pay me on time. I had 2 interviews this year and have been rejected by both. I have contacted career services at my school multiple times and they have been little to no help. Meanwhile I have a six figure debt due to law school and absolutely no way to pay for it. And I am responsible for bar dues as well. I am at my wits end and do not no what to do. Collegues have stopped responding to my emails and phone calls for help. I just want to be able to practice law and be able to pay my bills back.


    April 25, 2011 at 1:43 pm

  132. @Annoyed, I am in the same boat. I have 10+ years of banking/credit card customer service. I could never get promoted to Lead or Supervisor positions because I didn’t have the education. I decided to stay home with my young son and go to school. Here I am with a Bachelor’s in Business Admin and have been looking for a job for about a year. I got one job at a staffing service and they wanted me 45+ hours a week to call people all day and give them false hope of finding a job. I could not do that to people so I quit after a week. I know how excited you can get when you get a call and it seems like there is light at the end of the tunnel. I just couldn’t do that to people. I am luck that my husband makes a pretty good living but the student loans will come due soon enough. Thanks to everybody that posts on here. Today is my graduation day and I am spending it looking for jobs online. Again . . . .


    May 6, 2011 at 3:32 pm

  133. I still feel for everyone on here.

    I’ve been thinking and observing lately and I hate to admit it but I look around me and see more people who DID NOT go to college or graduate school actually doing BETTER than many of us who did go on for extended education. Here are some examples: a guy with only a high school diploma making almost 60 grand a year working for the highway department, a lady who started as a legal secretary with only a high school diploma and was soon making 20 dollars an hour, a lady with a bachelor’s degree in Theater and Drama (another “useless” degree) who started as a receptionist at a shipping firm and worked her way up to Project Manager making good money, a guy with only an associate’s degree in Computer Science who is now making 80 thousand a year.

    What do all these people have in common? THEY SKIPPED GOING ON FOR ADVANCED EDUCATIONS and simply WORKED. They were gaining “real world” experience ON THE JOB and therefore had more time in the field and worked their way up sooner… While those of us who went on for master’s degrees, etc. were not working as much or “putting it off” to pursue more education…

    Only the IRONY is that NOW WE ARE WORSE OFF FOR HAVING SPENT THE TIME TO GET MORE EDUCATION! And hiring managers don’t want us because of the whole “too much education” and “not enough experience” trap…

    Again, I am here at 36 not knowing where to go from here. My master’s degree in Library Science still puts me in an odd spot. I am tutoring part time at a small college for now, but quite honestly I don’t feel I am qualified for that either. Sure I can help people plan and research term papers, but when it comes to helping learning disabled students with reading comprehension, I am in over my head. Shame I couldn’t find one of the out of work reading teachers on here to take my place for me! 🙂

    Again, keep sharing stories and good luck to all! And thank you again for this blog!


    May 9, 2011 at 9:02 am

  134. I’m at this very weird in between stage. For the bulk of my life, I’ve had issues that I’ve needed to deal with and was able to push to the side due to school and work. For the first time in my life, I have nothing to hide behind. No school, no job, for the most part no friends. I’m being forced to finally deal with these issues. I still want a job, but I’m at the point where maybe it’s good that I’m not working so that I can finally deal with these things. And I have to admit, it does become rather depressing reading all these comments, just because it sucks that we all fell into that trap of thinking that going to school would help secure our futures, and if anything, it just made things worse. I do wish you all the best of luck on your journeys, though.


    May 23, 2011 at 2:40 pm

  135. I am sick and tired of my situation; I really don’t know what to do any more!! It seems like that everything I touch turns into S***. I have graduated last year and since then I haven’t even been able to find a part-time job. I’ve been applying for over 100 jobs and either I don’t hear anything from them or if I get an interview I’m either overqualified for the job or I don’t have the work experience! But where is someone like me supposed to gain that work experience if no one is willing to give me the chance? What is someone like me who has just graduated is supposed to do? Why do all the jobs go to people who are already working? So what are we supposed to do why did we even bother studying? Didn’t we study to increase our chances of getting a job???? I really don’t understand this, if no one is willing to give us a chance to start at some point and gain some experience then does that mean that I’m going to remain jobless forever? Unless I choose to do some crappy retail jobs, which has nothing to do with what I’ve studies at Uni? The funny thing is that it’s even hard to find work experience when I offer to work free for them, they either never reply or their answer is “sorry we don’t offer work experience to students” WTF!
    Guys I feel your pain because I’m going through the same thing but I just don’t know how to fix it! If any one of you ever figures it out please let me know too


    May 26, 2011 at 10:06 pm

  136. This blog make me realize I am not alone. I am 41 and have lost everything except my apartment. My 401K is now gone, my M.A is worthless…

    My dreams are gone.

    I had a great job for many years, was paying off student loans, had a great career going. Then was laid off and I have made it to final interviews but sadly in this country if you have misdemeanors from 10 years ago, YOU ARE screwed. This country does not believe in 2nd chances, and Google has made everyone a private detective.

    My life has come down to interviewing for a bike store, b/c it seems these days everyone is a detective and WON’T forgive or accept people change.

    I have finally accepted my dreams of the American dream are over (for now at least)…Yet, my friends and family are like “it will get better”? REALLY? I have applied for over 300 positions big n small and ALL my work history, USMC, grad school, I am done b/c of misdemeanors fro YEARS ago.

    I am sooooo HOPELESS…I had finally made professionally. had money. had a career. Now it’s gone and I’m interviewing for a sales position for a bike store, and sadly, I’ll fell lucky if they offer me $10hr. MY LIFE SUCKS SO BAD


    May 31, 2011 at 6:25 pm

  137. Here is some COMIC RELIEF for us all. I often like to make up song parodies when I sing along with the radio alone in my car…

    I made up this one the other day. I hope you enjoy it!

    “Me and My Useless Master’s Degree”
    (Sung to the tune of “Me and Bobby McGee”)

    When I was back in college
    I did pretty well
    I thought, “Hey, why not go on for more school?”
    I thought that it would help me
    Make a better life
    But how was I to know I was a fool?

    And now it’s years later
    Tryin’ to find a job
    That’ll pay me more than just 10 bucks
    But those with less education
    Are doin’ really well
    And you know it kind of really sucks

    ‘Cuz education’s s’possed to mean that
    You can never lose
    And grad school tuition, honey it ain’t free
    But now I’m just an educated
    Jerk who can’t find work
    ‘Cuz nobody wants to hire me
    Hire me and my useless master’s degree…


    June 14, 2011 at 8:07 am

  138. I’m glad you’ve created this forum and I’m hopeful for your future. I graduated in 06′ with a degree in history with aspirations of gaining a professorship but my mother became deathly ill and my career track was altered. To earn a living, I began working as low-voltage technician, which really grew on me, eventually specializing in fire alarm and life safety systems. Last August, I sustained an on the job injury that the state of Oklahoma deemed a “personal health issue” and I was denied workman’s compensation for the same. It took 2 months of doctor visits and costly medical bills to be granted a clean bill of health; e.g. 2 months with no income (Note to EVERYBODY: when you do get the job that befits your skill level, education, and financial needs do whatever you can to horde away in savings as much as you can and train yourself to be a disciplined consumer; I did this and was so thankful that I had enough foresight). Within 5 minutes of handing my employer a release to work statement, I was terminated citing that a previous contract had not performed correctly. When I asked them for evidence, they declined stating that it wouldn’t matter at this point as I’d been “off work” for 2 months and they subsequently threatened to fight me IN COURT over an unemployment benefits claim which they later lost miserably because they couldn’t produce any proof of their allegations. I’ve been routinely out of work since Oct. of last year but luckily I’ve been able to scape by contracting my tech services on a 1099 income basis, something that many should consider as a temporary alternative. I can’t remember the exact # of places I’ve applied but I’ve heard everything that you and your forum has heard: Over-educated, overqualified, made too much money at a previous employer, won’t be considered b/c your not currently employed (discrimination I think), we’ll let you know (usually means: NEXT!), no food service experience (I’m not making that up!), and my favorite:”why aren’t you applying in your field?” I’m very thankful that I’ll at least be able to keep the low-voltage licensing in hopes that someday, someone, somewhere will pick up the phone and say you’re hired. Until then, we’re all counting ourselves as a generation of underemployed people, who might be witnessing the death of the “American Dream”. I wish the very best for you all and don’t ever give up!

    Kevin Lewis

    June 15, 2011 at 2:26 pm

  139. I was laid off from my dream job; I had it for 25 years. Two years before I got laid off I decided to get a Masters. When I got my degree last June, I got a small pizza party from my supervisor. Then four months later my wonderful supervisor quit, and a month later I got laid off. Now it’s been seven months and I cannot get a job. I got one interview and the HR person look at my qualifications, and just laugh, saying you are over qualify for this job. I am running out of money and do job. Next door neighbor’s son quit HS two years ago and does not want to get a GED, but he is working for the town and makes $35k. I just think “Education sucks!” I owe a lot on student loans and he not even have a GED and makes $35k. Sorry, I guess we all are in the same boat. Good Luck to everyone!


    June 17, 2011 at 9:53 pm

  140. Shhhh. I graduated December 2008 and still have yet to find any type of work. I don’t even try anymore and I have become an apathetic derelict. I think after 6 months of unemployment you become undead in more ways than one. Life is full of lessons and it seems to me that having friends in high places and protecting one’s reputation is more important than intelligence or merit based degrees / training. Politics and popularity trump merit in so many words. You know your life is hell when you’re reading this blog at four in the morning. This is certain. To add insult to injury they took away online poker. Time to move on.

    anonymous derelict

    June 29, 2011 at 3:25 am

  141. I’ll be very brief. I too am in the same boat. I graduated from college with a degree in Business over a year ago. I was jerked around in the interview process by multiple companies before finally being told that the higher ups wouldn’t approve their budget and wanted them to redistribute the work (i.e. overwork their current employees) instead of hiring someone new. My time was wasted by several companies and temp agencies. I went back to school for my MBA, but I’m not sure that adding more debt will help, but at least its keeping the bank off my back for 2 more years. Anyway, although I’m extremely discouraged, I’m here to say that there is light at the end of the tunnel. My friends mom had a masters degree, but it didn’t do anything for her. She was seeing people promoted over her all the time. Until one day, someone was fired and she was the ONLY one who had a masters degree. This qualified her for a management position and her salary jumped up to six figures, increasing by almost 80%. It may not pay off today. It may not pay off tomorrow. It may not pay off for years, but ONE DAY, it will. Hang in there everyone!!!!


    June 30, 2011 at 8:51 pm

  142. I was laid off almost 3 years ago and have been unable to find even a part-time retail job. It seems like I am being penalized for having a college education and having work experience. I have a Bachelor’s degree and am slightly older than 45. I have applied for every type of job (coffee shops, local delivery driving, grocery stores) to try to at least get some part-time pay, but it seems that these types of businesses would rather work short-staffed or hire dumber than box of rocks young people (I realize not all of the people working these types of jobs are slackers but it has often been my experience in the last few years when I do rarely go to a store that I practically have to go behind the counter myself to complete the sale.) Some of these people cannot even make correct change for a $4.96 sale when I pay $5.01. I am very frustrated, humiliated and at a loss. If it weren’t for my family paying my bills since my unemployment ran out 9 months ago, I’d be homeless, so I know I don’t have it quite as bad as some others, but I am hopeless.


    July 6, 2011 at 8:48 pm

  143. @Ginger, as I posted earlier I too have seen more and more examples of people with just high school diplomas or GEDs doing well and earning more money than people with masters degrees. As for someone without even a GED, I think I have seen that too… We attended my nephew’s wedding this weekend and it was a lavish event, more than we could ever afford. He never went to college and started working construction right out of high school. He also owns property. Money is no problem for him. It really does put education in a whole different perspective.

    Meanwhile, with two kids and a mortgage and expenses, my husband keeps hounding me to make more money or to find a better job. I am making 13 an hour at a small college tutoring center right now. Believe me, I’m glad for that compared to all the other 9 or 10 dollar an hour jobs outside of my field, but at 36 and with a graduate degree I should be bringing in more… But just like the rest of you, every time I try to interview for something I get the overqualified or “why aren’t you applying in your field?” comments.


    July 12, 2011 at 6:42 am

  144. Young recent grad here. I am typing this from my parent’s house because I have not been able to find work despite having a BS in Information Science from a reputable research university (bullshit by the way; it doesn’t make a difference no matter how great you were and how much research you contributed to along with other outside projects). I spent many an hour surfing job boards and sending in my resumes, making sure to re-tool them time and time again and yet I would get no responses for the most part. The few that I did, I would enter the interview and then the bitchass interviewer would put on a show for his/her amusement I’m sure. I saw an article on Aol.com a while ago which showed just how these HR idiots act. Yeah, don’t read more than one sentence of my cover letter you useless piece of crap. On the side I did freelance work, but if you’re doing that online it doesn’t pay much and ChaCha (which keeps cutting its pay per question because hey they need the profits) can’t do much no matter how hard you work and how well you write your answers.

    What really pisses me off is two things. One, the assholes responsible for this recession and past recessions and the conditions which made them possible (i.e capitalism and its excesses) have not been blamed. Instead, people will defend these parasites to no end while crying about so-called illegal immigrants and taxes on businesses. Don’t they realize that these CEOS and their cronies don’t care about them? I’m a black woman and I can’t get hired even with my knowledge and the willingness to learn whether on or off the job. These banks got bailed out while they cut funding to education and other services because hey those serve the majority of Americans and we can’t have that. Not a shocker though considering that the state exists to prop-up capitalism.

    Two, when my parents get on my case for not getting employment like as if I haven’t been trying to do so since sophomore year of college. They complain about socialism and yet they f’n benefited from a guaranteed free education from preschool to grad school in their home country. They crow about hard work, but many people work hard and yet they get rewarded with foreclosures, losing their jobs, shitty healthcare, and crappy schools.


    July 30, 2011 at 3:07 pm

  145. What would help is if people unloaded their Suburbans, and Big 4X4 pickups, but they won’t.
    If they dumped Satellite and Cable TV, and used Free dial-up internet access(for a while, until they got caught up), used Pre-paid Cell Phones, but they won’t.
    Stopped having kids and a dog for each kid, but they won’t.

    Drove the speed limit on the High Ways, instead of doing 90 mph everywhere they go, but they won’t
    Bring their lunches to work, but they won’t.

    Yes, I’m employed, until this Lock Shop I work at closes on 9/23/11 (one month from now), and I’m 56 years old, so I won’t ever find another job.

    But because I have done all of those things I suggested, and more, most of my adult life, I can be unemployed and not worry.

    I am not a Financial Adviser, or ever went to College, and never made more than $12.00hr.

    I just never lived beyond my means.

    I wish I could help, but no one ever listens.

    Bill Mullis

    August 19, 2011 at 3:30 pm

  146. Hi,

    I’m a producer with The Washington Post, and I wanted to let you guys know about our new unemployment project, “Help Wanted: Stories of Unemployment.” The project features six jobless individuals who are blogging about their experiences this summer.

    Here’s a link to the project: http://www.washingtonpost.com/unemploymentstories

    And a description of the project: http://www.washingtonpost.com/conversations/about-the-help-wanted-project/2011/08/01/gIQAYoXVpI_story.html

    Please visit and add your voice through to the project via the comment boards.

    Brian M. Rosenthal

    Brian M. Rosenthal

    August 22, 2011 at 3:10 pm

  147. let just tell you about my qualifications and then my length of unemployment
    Bachelors in Civil engineering, Masters in Civil engineering ( Gator), MBA,LEED AP Project management certificate( CAPM), Certified Primavera user( PMI) and 4 years of experience and unemployed.
    I graduated in 08 and worked for free for my university cause that was the worst time to search for a job, I didn’t get anything, so decided i Should look for a job outside of the US( Dubai) worked there but wasn’t satisfied for a lot of reasons( Heat, and low profile) so left that and came back to the States, hoping things have changed, but its still the same.
    I have given up and lost hope and sometimes even have suicidal thoughts- cause now I have $50k in debt and still no job, and seems things aren’t going to get any better either( Making me think I should have stayed with the Job in Dubai)
    hoping one day I would be atleast get a decent paying job just to sustain my self- Companies dont even consider my resume for entry level position. Just feels like i have wasted the last 10years of my life on my job and education.Because of this my relationships are at the breaking point-with my GF and My family.God Help us!

    really tired and given up all hopes

    August 26, 2011 at 2:51 am

  148. Hi All-
    I’m a grad student pursuing my Master’s Degree in Journalism from Harvard’s Extension School. For my final project I’m working on a series of related articles intended to shed light on the unemployment crisis in the U.S. I’m interested in the first-hand, personal accounts of the ways in which unemployment affects an individual’s life. I want people to be able to speak up about their struggles, openly and honestly.

    I’m asking for your help in completing my research. I want to hear your story. How you became unemployed, your efforts to find suitable employment, your career goals, the everyday struggles you face both personally and professionally, and anything else you think is important.

    If you’re interested in sharing your story, please email me at: leighm.melanson05@gmail.com.

    I’ve also started a blog where I’ll post updates about the project. You can read more here: http://leighmel.wordpress.com/

    Thanks for your help,
    Leigh Melanson

    Leigh M.

    September 6, 2011 at 9:04 pm

  149. I know exactly what you mean. Ive just got my Journalism degree – I work on a voluntary basis as a writer for a website, I have 5 years retail experience, two work placements at a regional and national publication and I speak to foreign languages and yet – I cannot find a job as a journalist, as a media employee and now I’m apparently overqualified to go back into retail. All because the government, the banks and out parents’ generation were so irresponsible with credit that the job market vanished by time I reached adulthood 😦


    September 14, 2011 at 8:01 am

  150. You can´t win. Face it. The only thing that one can do is to get revenge. So what is revenge? George Herbert had it right when he told us that living well is the best revenge. So eat well, drink well, dress well, sleep well, laugh hardily, Speak kindly and crisply, write knowingly, read a lot but only the best books, make you entertainment inexpensive such as people watching in coffeehouses and roaming libraries and museums, be a flaneur and a bon vivant, learn what is edible and how to prepare it, be polite even to those that you hate, don´t worry about your credit rating because when you don´t have the money–you don´t have any credit anyway, don´t worry about paying your bills because worrying is just going to give you illness and make you feel ill. Remember that they´re out to make you destroy yourself so don´t give them the satisfaction. Don´t worry. Be happy.

    kenneth casper

    September 17, 2011 at 7:49 am

  151. Very interesting comments here and I think it proves a very valid point…..that the jobless are not lazy and uneducated.

    You can look to many factors for this current economic state and first off is offshoring. If a company’s executives can move work to a low cost country with no environmental regulations they WILL do it and rarely think twice about it. This includes anything that can be moved which is A LOT and it is anything from lower skilled assembly line work to higher skilled work like engineering and computer jobs. It’s all about the short term stock value and making the balances sheets look better TODAY for a quick return for shareholders and for upper management to get their bonuses. In the meantime the middle class is being eroded and these short sighted decisions made by executives are usually leading to long term problems leading to situations like bail outs. And lobbyists have made sure the executives get their way with offshoring…..no protection for the american worker here by our government.

    Another factor is that education has been devalued while at the same time the cost has sky rocketed. Kind of backward economics if you ask me. But it’s really all supply and demand. There are way more people graduating and way less jobs, driving down the value of even having an education.

    Also we are an import country now and need to be an export country. Take Germany and Japan for instance. They are nothing more than the size of Ohio each but yet they are a global economic power. It’s because they export and protect their industrial and technological jobs.

    This economy will totally collapse in our lifetime at this rate due to lack of middle class jobs and outrageous education and healthcare costs. If nobody has any money to spend and banks freeze up credit like they have it’s terrible economics. America was all about having a solid middle class cause that’s what has driven our economy.

    By the way, I have a BS degree in Engineering and Minor in Business from a Big Ten school. Two of my last four semesters I was on the Dean’s List. It has been nothing but pure hell since graduating. Contract jobs that went nowhere except the unemployment line, sub teaching which is unstable and pays not so great, and medical admin jobs that don’t pay great. All the while I had student loans to pay for and piling up interest.

    America……..sold to the lowest third world bidder.


    September 28, 2011 at 11:37 am

  152. My heart goes out to the author and all the folks that find themselves in this situation. I too am in the same boat — having TWO masters degrees and I still can’t get a job. I have had a few interviews and even got down to being a final candidate only to find out that I did not get the job and the candidate the elected to go with was younger and less educated than me (if you don’t believe me — just check LinkedIn).

    I let my pride go a long time ago job searching for opportunities from both ends of the spectrum and all points in between. Both McDonald’s and WalMart turned me down. My job coach at a local career networking group I’m affiliated with said that some companies feel intimidated by highly educated folks and fear that we’ll come in and take their jobs. I’m just looking to keep food on my table and my lights on and I’m not worried about coming in and taking somebody else’s job. When and while I was working I “lived below my means” and I saved money which I’ve had to since dip into to pay my living expenses. With all this going on, I still somehow manage to take care of a disabled mother as we live really frugal keeping our heads just above water.


    October 30, 2011 at 9:56 pm

  153. I can see the light and it looks good. I am looking foward to my next visit. Keep me plug-in.

    Jwerry Love

    November 30, 2011 at 12:35 am

  154. I have a Bachelors Degree, 4 years of military service as enlisted, 1.5 years of reserve service as an officer, have experience in Fundraising for Higher Education, Office Management, Personnel Training, Law Enforcement and many other fields. I am currently a graduate student. I have been looking for a full time job for about 7 months and have only been called in for two interviews: part time baggage handler at Delta for $9.50 an hour, which I declined, and a Correctional Officer for $11.25 and hour. In the latter interview I was told that I was grossly overqualified, but that they were interested. That was two weeks ago and I have no response.

    I was always taught, graduate high school, go to college, get a good job. I graduated college and was told, “get experience.” I joined the military and got experience only to be told, “get more education.” Now that I have experience and education, I am being told I am overqualified.

    A few months ago I was looking for a job and was in this same situation. So I decided to exclude my college education and military work experience from the application. I received a call the next day for an interview and was hired that same day. In the interview I told them I had a college degree so they gave me an extra 50 cents on the 9.00 an hour they paid. I worked in this position for 1 month because they began putting me in management positions but refused to pay management salary. When I told them I was quitting they offered $10.15 an hour. I laughed and walked out the door, never to return.

    6 years of college, 5.5 years of excellent military service, over 9 years of relevant work experience and all I got was an offer of $10.15 an hour? And this for a position that I had to pretend to be dumber just to get an interview.

    I shouldn’t have wated my time going to college. Had I started working for $9.00 an hour straight out of high school I could be a supervisor making at least $16.00 an hour. That’s better than the nothing I make now.

    I guess I have more time to enjoy reading the classics now. Thanks economic crash.


    January 23, 2012 at 10:47 pm

  155. Hi everyone, please share your experiences with unemployment and underemployment on my online support blog here:


    Let’s remind each other that we are not alone!


    January 24, 2012 at 3:03 pm

  156. I think what kills me the most is I can’t even get started garnering experience to get any sort of job. I graduated in 2005 with a Bachelor’s in Psychology with the intent to return to graduate school and pursue a further degree in Psychology. I had meant in the interim to just take some small retail or such job.

    I applied to every retail store in our town, to hotels and to tons of other places. I only lucked into one interview and the position only lasted three months over the holidays.

    Since then, nothing. I finally turned to independent contracting with various companies and made around part-time minimum wage through that. Between that and my husband’s disability, we scraped by as he attended college.

    Now that has dried up and in lieu of searching for more IC work, I’ve turned back to the work force at large. And again, nothing. I understand a great deal of this is my fault for never having summer jobs (mostly because I could never get hired anywhere) and so having little work experience in that sense. It’s frustrating though to apply and then simply never heard a word back. And I’m not applying to high level positions either, these are all entry level retail positions.

    If I can’t get one of those, then what can I get?

    Forever Inexperienced

    February 15, 2012 at 3:14 pm

  157. Associate’s Degree, Bachelors in Criminal Justice with a 4.0 GPA and halfway through a Master’s in Criminal Justice with a 4.0 GPA. I cannot find a job anywhere. Have been applying and testing for police officer positions where over 800 people show up for 1-2 jobs. I feel like I am never going to get anywhere or break into the field. It’s a terrible feeling. Thank you all for sharing your stories on here.

    Dan Doherty

    February 19, 2012 at 8:29 pm

  158. I have a Bachelor’s Degree in English. I recently went for my Masters, hoping it would make a difference but I’m still without a job. I have gone to job fairs, applied for jobs online, only to reach a dead end at each turn. Then I have my family forcing me into the military because there’s nothing here in civilian life. They like to say they’re not forcing me to go, that they don’t want to see my education go to waste but it still feels like they’re forcing me to do it. The only options I have left is apply for the NYPD and a Caseworker as well as apply for jobs outside of New York.

    There were so many days where I wanted to give up and stop living. I started gaining weight because of stress and my hair started falling out. I know how it is out there, to feel your education was a waste because you can’t find work.

    Thank you for this blog. It did lift my spirits up, after getting into another argument with my family again.

    Still fighting

    February 25, 2012 at 11:21 am

  159. Wow, d.h., you should be writing for the WSJ or something. “America……..sold to the lowest third world bidder.” It’s 2012 & we need to face this reality – the future jobs are only going to be in retail because we keep importing other countries’ garbage and re-selling it for them, giving them the profits so that THEY can get Master’s degrees and put them to excellent use in THEIR countries. The tables are totally turning on us. Anyway, I totally empathize with my fellow unemployees. It’s near 1AM and I read every post. Only a few of these comments I would write off as whiny, and typically I can’t stomach more than two comments elsewhere, so I commend all of you for at least sustaining my interest to make it all the way to the end. If I read comments on any other site or blog or facebook, it’s instantly raises my blood pressure! I’m surprised because some of you have really legitimate-sounding degrees – I have a studio art degree!! Nowadays, I ache for a degree in accounting or nursing or basically anything that isn’t a hokey liberal arts aka hipster degree! Is anyone familiar with Chicago? I’ve been out of a day job for 5 months, no unemployment benefits, no savings, sponging off of a relative, feeling extremely worthless with each passing day – and selling off some of my collectibles for a few hundred bucks to get by. but I still maintain two weekend jobs, one day as a volunteer teacher’s aide, the other day spent in a retail bookstore (both of which offer great satisfaction- yay me :). My big beef with the world -or maybe it’s a snobby Chi-town thing?- when one performs three years’ of weekend volunteer service, and then applies for a paying job through same company’s online job board but never, ever gets contacted for interview, wouldn’t it make sense to offer this altruistic, long-time volunteer of yours a paying job? My assumption 3yrs ago was that volunteer work would get my foot in the door to this institution- I’m also an alumnus of the place! The other gals who are teacher’s aides are undergrad work-study so they get paid $10/hr doing what I do for free. So I don’t know what my options are other than to give up volunteering/trying for a paying job here or in the visual arts entirely, and switch to nursing associate’s degree this fall. Chicago is glutted with foreigners – legal, illegal, those from other states – I wonder what others unemployed in Cook Cty are resorting to. I’m in my early 30s & desperate even for retail. In two months, I need $100 for my dinosaur car’s registration renewal, plus I didn’t withhold enough from taxes and now the IRS wants $600 from me I just found out. I wish I didn’t end up this way – but my credentials and talents weren’t good enough, I’m a female and sort of ethnic, retail jobs start and end at minimum wage…and even if you are frugal, minimum wage does NOT get you by. Transportation, taxes, food costs (actual food, not eating out food), basic living stuff = living check to check. So all this does not work in my favor in Chgo. Eeeeekkk, I’m so frustrated! At least I don’t have mini-me’s to support like some of you, but I’m in such a rut as it is. It IS all about who you know, especially the bigger the city you’re in. What I wish I knew then: DO NOT get bamboozled by college recruiters – they are sales people! They are trying to sell you a loan for a worthless degree – then the college career people forget about you the second you graduate! They are called degree mills – beware, b/c all colleges operate like this. The only guaranteed jobs are in healthcare – that is the route I am now going to pursue, so I can at least start at a livable $15ish/hr here as a CNA wiping people w/health insured rears 🙂 Stay away from big cities like Chi- they are all going the way of Detroit. But: There are lots of hospitals here in IL, do not come here for school or work unless you want to pursue health – that’s my 2 cents & biggest regret I didn’t do it 14 yrs ago. Good luck, and don’t begrudge those w/jobs and trips to Disney. It’s all a facade. (Jobs come and go. You can get a leg up a lot easier in a menial job at a GOOD company known for promoting people. You must be strategic that way. Easier than waltzing into a high-pressure high-level job where all eyes are on you. Easier to work one’s way up at a good company, keep that in mind.) Pretty much anyone w/a mortgage is a heartbeat away from homelessness so don’t sign your life away until you’ve got a ton of money saved. The middle class never existed before the 1940s/50s, it’s a fluke, and now that it’s going away, we’re up in arms. So be it. We’re back to feudal times, but that’s how our ancestors did it. Marry rich 🙂 now play ball!


    March 2, 2012 at 2:12 am

  160. I just graduated with a degree in welding technology from probably the best school in m state for that degree. I go take these weld tests at perspective places of employment and I can see the other applicants tests. They are shit welds. All day. I can read blue prints, weldments, non-destructive testing with ultrasound and mag particle testing, I know what filler materials go with what base metals at what temperature. I can weld pipe, stainless, aluminum, low, mild, and high carbon steels in and out of position. I know stick, GMAW, GTAW, SUB-ARC, spray transfer, open root, all of it. I KNOW the retards I’m applying against are dumbass shade tree welders that have just “been skating by” but have been doing it for 15 years. I’ll out weld them any day of the week.

    But after I test and Im told how great it is…nothing. All because I didn’t work for some conglomerate that crashed after 30 years.


    March 7, 2012 at 3:37 pm

  161. Hi all. Checking in again since my last post. I’m now 37 years old, with a now useless master’s degree and two kids and a mortgage… AND I’m back to TEMPING again. I just came to vent about how temp job may at times offer a quick fix of a paycheck and some opportunity, but yet other times it can be so depressing and demeaning to be a temp. I’m still limited to part time until my youngest starts kindergarten so I picked up a part time office assistant job with a government agency that uses temps due to a state hiring freeze. At first I welcomed the opportunity thinking it would give me some great experience and great connections and maybe even (wishful thinking, I know) be a gateway to a “real” job someday if I could get permanently hired.

    After being there a month, I now realize it’s not the “great opportunity” I hope for. A paycheck, yes, but not much else.

    As for experience, I’m not really doing much of well… anything. They’ve given me some data entry tasks, some occasional phone calls to make, etc. but mostly I am there to answer the phones when the main receptionist goes to lunch. As for connections, no one really knows or seems to care who I am. I often email the project managers asking if they need me to help them with side job, but sometimes they bother to answer and sometimes they don’t. Most days I sit alone in my cubicle reading emails over and over again, pretending to be “busy” and fighting the urge to just start texting or playing on my phone. Furthermore, I found out that most of the temps who had held the position before me were not only 22 years old, but they were “paid interns” who helped out in the office while going to school. Another psychological slap in the face. As for it ever becoming a real job or advancing, those chances are very slim. In fact, finding that it’s more of a paid intern’s job makes me wonder if they’ll even keep me on at all. The new crop of summer interns are being interviewed now and my workload is getting slimmer and slimmer.

    Yet the part of the temp job that hurts even worse is that most of the people who work for this government agency have been there for 10, 20, some even 25 years! And, many of them have only two or four year degrees! The one person in the office who holds a very prestigious, middle management position actually holds a two year degree from the same small college where I still tutor part time! There are other manager or director people there still in their twenties, many of whom started the positions right after getting their bachelor’s degrees.

    All of it depresses me and makes me wonder if I went down too many wrong paths career wise. I still can’t help but feel that, at my age, I should be “settled.” In my 20s in grad school I sacrificed so much thinking that when I got to be in my late 30s with a family to help support that I’d be in a nice secure position working SOMEWHERE. I was wrong. The constant job searching and worrying about my future and jumping from temp to temp position along with the tutoring or “freelancing” side job that never turn into much more.. . it takes my focus away from my family too.


    May 26, 2012 at 12:59 pm

  162. In my case qualitication and age have left me out the market, I have had now two periods of long unemployment 4 years and 3 years. I am 49 years old with 25 years experience in Asset management, I hold a Bsc. in Business Administration and an MBA in International Management. for 2 years now I actively sought a job through ads & head hunters, and of course networking to no availe. Every one tells me to change carreers, and my response is to what ? No one has the answer because I am caught in catch 22 situation, start all over at 49 no one in his right mind will hire a 49 year old, and then what I have maybe 15 years left in my active live

    Peter Friedli

    June 2, 2012 at 5:08 am

  163. I hear you Peter. Even at 37 I have already seen some “age discrimination” of my own when applying for jobs. I didn’t want to believe it at first, but I have lost many opportunities to 26 year olds. And to admit it, when I myself WAS 26, I was pretty much given every position for which I interviewed. Being older and experienced “should” give us a better edge in the job market, but they still seem to go for the younger ones. I’m not sure if it’s for an “eye candy” thing of having young and attractive people in the office or if it’s the idea that younger people are still “moldable” and less set in their ways.


    June 17, 2012 at 10:03 am

  164. Having never been laid off in all of my working career, I have been laid off twice in a little more than a year. Professionals say you can not accept the decision as personal, but how else can I accept that? I am 54 years old, have have over 23 years experience in the legal profession and a husband who is disabled and on SSD. My career I love, yet I know, the legal market has plunged. I simply want to work and provide for my husband. I’ve lost 23 pounds in just two and a half weeks. Afraid to eat, spend money or go outside of my house, I am gripped with fear.

    The depression is overwhelming. Try to promote yourself when you feel the face of aversity looking straight on.

    Gripped With Fear

    July 14, 2012 at 10:15 pm

  165. Hi everyone. I have a master’s degree in clinical social work and 2.5 yrs experience. I have worked as a family preservation counselor and currently as a school-based therapist. I have to say I am so tired of being underpaid for my amount of education and experience. I am 23 yrs old and already have 2.5 yrs experience under my belt as a professional…not bragging at all jut trying to emphasize my point. Well, recently I had enough and I impulsively put in my 30 day notice without having another job lined up. So, now I am looking for work and freaking out….However, I don’t feel like I made the wrong choice…I am very burnt out already and very exhausted from working in people’s homes and dealing with child abuse on a regular basis…. I am a singer/songwriter and that is really where my heart is but obviously can’t find work as an entertainer….Any ideas or encouragement from anyone???


    July 23, 2012 at 5:26 pm

  166. I’ve been out of full time work since 2008 with only a few part time gigs since that didn’t last long. I am a certified science teacher and former department chairman. I also have retail plus light duty mechanic and parts experience. I estimate I have sent out at least 500+ resumes in the last few years to no avail. Several teachers I know have tried short circuiting their resumes to try to get jobs but get found out and released even though they’ve done a great job. When they do get all the info out the first time they are passed over every time. I do have another means but it requires scrounging. Sometimes the return is good but most of the time very little. All that’s happening smacks of NWO. I am 60 with at the very least 10-15 years of good solid work I can give and more so. I too have a Bachelors with Masters hours, loads of extra in-service training, what I’ve developed on my own and other non-professional experience. Looks like we may all have to set up our own businesses like a lot of new grads are doing these days. I have known a few ex-cons, they get all the money they want for free. It is upside-down and backwards the way this country is today, have your escape routes planned. Good luck to everyone trying to do it the right way!!!


    July 26, 2012 at 1:18 pm

  167. I am living a life of shattered dreams a pre-determined life set up by my parents right from the start. Was forced out of the house at 19 by my parents dictating that I should buy a house. Lost it and the job I had when the company closed in 2003. Did I mention I have a criminal record? So right off from the start I am not ever been given a fair shot by companies, because they all want someone who is perfect. In 2008 I claimed bankruptcy. I have worked for companies that don’t ask, but when they found out about having a record, no matter how small, I get fired. It is now 2012 and the only job I have worked for is delivering the newspaper, oh and I don’t drive. Have been to 31 different cities have handed out around 10,000 resumes in person and by email.Have done tons of interviews that lead nowhere, and have also been given every excuse in the book by temp agencies. 21 of those cities I have been to have told me straight out, sorry we can’t hire you because you have a record. I only have a high school diploma. I have given up all hope of ever finding a job. Things have gotten so bad that most nights I go through LITERALLY go through garbage dumpsters to find a bag of chips or whatever. Most nights I go to bed hungry. I am now 32 and life for me has stalled. Why is it in Canada we are turning a blind eye to situations like mine.
    Desperate in Atlantic Canada

    Mike T

    August 17, 2012 at 9:04 am

  168. I can’t get a job, this is since i lost my good job in retail management for a bad mistake that I did, which cost me a lot of problems and headache….try real hard not to make mistakes at your job. I earned about 40,000 a year. Now, i barely make 15,000 a year at RadioShack…this is aweful….Good luck all …


    August 21, 2012 at 12:30 am

  169. Everyone in here is whining and crying about not being able to find a job. Heck, get any job you can find and work your butt off!! I don’t care whether it is minimum wage or it is 30 dollars an hour, you can sit there and cry and feel sorry for yourself or you can be proud and happy that any job exist out there and apply for them and learn as much as you can. I busted my butt off getting a simple business degree but started off making only $10 dollars an hour picking up boxes, I was sooooo happy for having a job back in 2005. I kept applying for other jobs and found jobs paying 12 dollars an hour working call centers in 2006. I spoke with a few people and found out a lot of people were in the same boat I was. One lady had a law degree and was working with me in the call center. I got let go from the call center job 2 months after. I knew I had to take drastic measures and applied for every single job I can find, later got into banking and made 16 dollars an hour. Worked my way up and made 20 then 30 dollars an hour, all at the same time I was holding 2 part time jobs on the side. My goal now was to save as much money as I can and learn as much as I can because you never know what will happen to your main job….guess what, my 30 dollar an hour banking job ended due to lack of work, but I still have my two other part time jobs. FORTUNATELY, I saved over 100,000 dollars, invested in real estate, stocks, preferred shares and gold. Right now I’m worth close to a quarter of a million dollars and I’m still working my two part time jobs, while I can’t find a job in my field–banking. It’s not about finding the perfect job any more, it’s more about being financially free and getting out of the rat race!!! Once you have money saved up, you won’t have to worry so much about finding a job. You have time to do as you please with all your saved up money. Invest your money and grow it, work for yourself, start your own business, work odd jobs, use the critical thinking skills you developed from univesit and apply it to the real world. Don’t go to school and get 4 or 5 degrees and hope anyone is going to hire you!! You’re letting large organizations control your life and push you around!! Henry Ford doesn’t know algebra and geometry and he created Ford Motors! Hell, he doesn’t have a high school diploma. IF Henry Ford can be a multi-millionaire without a high school diploma, what’s the point of getting 5 or 10 degrees!!! REad about how rich people made their money. You’ll be surpised they don’t have advance degrees and they are the ones hiring PH.D grads and engineers to work for them.


    September 21, 2012 at 6:07 pm

  170. I can’t speak about a degree from college nor not finding a job in my field the degree came in. Let me give a little story on the situation I am in.

    I’m a 34 year old married man with 2 beautiful kids. I’ve been working in the construction field since before I graduated high school. Since graduation I have worked in the construction field for the last 16 years. This includes 4 years I ran my own construction business. During those 16 years I went from working on house framing, to building commercial buildings, and finally I was able to end up doing industrial foundation work. I made it all the way up to a top dollar journeyman(for those that don’t know it’s someone that has been certified as a top skill person in their construction trade).

    After working in the industrial field for the last 6 years I began to get quite ill. In May of 2008 I was diagnosed with high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and hypertension disorder. These conditions have alot to do with me always working out of town and living in hotel after hotel, bad diet while traveling, and working 70+ hours a week. I was given medications that help alleviate the symptoms so you can function relatively normally, but they do come with direct side effects. The blood pressure medacine i am on(Norvasc) has specific instructions that state to not spend excessive hours working in direct sunlight. It causes me to burn severely to the point I can use the high SPF sunscreen now and burn in 2 hours when I would work outside all day before without any sunscreen at all.

    I continued to work the job I had at that time since it was mostly indoors so the contact with he sun was minimal. In November 2008 we completed the project we were working on and the crew I worked with were all laid off. Now i figured this would have been a good time to find a new line of work where I was going to be closer to home and able to spend time with my family. Well let’s say that hasn’t been easy. I am now sitting on being out of work for going on 2 years.

    I have resorted to going as far down as putting in applications at McDonalds and Radio Shack. The problem is that most companies are only taking applications online and rarely do they give a personal interview so I can explain my situation. The only thing these companies see is that for the past 16 years I have averaged over 50k a year and for the last 6 years I made over 100k each of those 6 years. They look at the application and my application automatically gets shoved into the “overqualified” stack without further thought.

    I am so frustrated because my home is about to go into foreclosure and my wife has went back to work(granted for alot less than I was making), but i can’t even get a minimum wage job. If i could even get a full time job that paid minimum wage we could afford our bills. I wasn’t a big spender even though I made a nice paycheck. We did alot of traveling in between jobs, but I always made sure my monthly bills were low so they could be affordable if bad times arose. Even our house is relatively cheap.

    When I ran my own construction business 12 years ago I purchased a ran down home in the country that the couple that had it before us sold the property with the home on it for nothing more than the land price because the house was such a disaster. We took out a $25,000 loan and did all of the renovations ourselves and then took out a second loan once the home was completed to consolidate all of our secured loans into one monthly payment. We wound up with a 2000+ sqft home with 2.5 acres of land and the final loan was only $50k which covered both of our cars, our credit cards, and the home itself.

    Now after being married for 13 years I feel like a complete failure. I have always been the one that is responsible and worked for a living. Now I feel worthless because I can’t even get a job flipping burgers or stocking shelves at a grocery store. It feels like everything I have accomplished through my life is going down the drain because I’m not even important enough for a low paying job that high school kids get as a summer job they quit without thinking twice.

    I guess the moral of the story is that I do understand where you not being able to get a job in your field and making alot less than expected is hard, but don’t forget there are millions of us that would take a job like you have in an instant. At this point just feel blessed that you even have that low paying job. I know i would…..


    September 27, 2012 at 4:50 am

  171. I just found this blog. I hope I am not necroing a dead horse by posting.

    I was laid off 5 months after this blog was started and I am still unemployed. I spent 14 of the last 16 years working at local areospace manufacturer as a tooling specialist, IT tech and toolcrib supervisor. I am a disabled Navy vet with no degree but training in weapons systems electronics (which was a waste because I dont have a degree). I have been employed continuously since I was 17 and am now 46. The last 2 years I have NOT taken unemployment benefits but have instead tried to live off substantial savings and now retirement accounts. I have searched since the week after I was laid off for work in every field that is in my region. I am over, under, not, perfectly and almost qualified for every position it seems, but no job. I have taken the resume writing classes and the worker enhancment training and all the other offered services to show I am employable. I did everything right. I saved, I planned, I bought a home far below my income level, I drove used vehicles, I never spent excessively, I have one child, never divorced, dont drink or smoke, I exercised, blah blah blah.

    I have almost stopped looking for work. I have flat given up finding work. I am as apathetic as a breathing body could be and still make the effort to inhale. My saving/retirement accounts are exhausted. I have one month of savings left and then its lights out. My wife can go live with her elderly mother and my teenage son has plenty of family and friends offering to take him in. When the power is turned off I will begin selling off the remaining items we have and I will bank the money into PMs for my son. I will then take the only item I will not sell and put the one 45 ACP I have been saving into my brainpan. The mortgage holder can clean up the mess as my wife will file bankruptcy the day after the power is turned off. I have had a life insurance policy for over 30 years that has a suicide clause in it but I was granfathered so they will pay. I have to renew in Dec and I cant afford to, so if I am going to get a return on the 30 years I paid into the policy I have to use it now. I am worth more dead than alive and at least my son will be provided for if he is cautious.

    Before you all say , NO DON’T ! Please understand that my family has failed me just like the system has failed. They stopped caring when my income disappeared. I was a good father and husband until I could not provide. Now I am a failure they are embarrashed to be around. This goes for my siblings and friends who are so uncomfortable that they wont be around me anymore. They just dont care anymore and I am to tired to keep trying. The system is failing millions around the world and I am not being a whiner I am just stating my situation. I have choosen to give what little I have left to offer, such as it may be.

    I will vote Nov 6th, if only for the need to leave my house and make a statement that I have tried until the end even though I really gave up awhile ago. I am very proud that so many have kept the faith and continue to try and move forward. I wish I had something left to struggle for. I go to the library because I still read and right now I am at a drunk friends house posting the last resumes I will ever send. Maybe something will break but after so long and no offers I dont expect much. My friend reluctantly agreed to monitor the mail account and watch for anything encouraging. He knows that next month I will be “leaving” as does my family so it is really no great effort on his part.

    I truly wish all you seeking relief from this period of decay in America the best. I never would have guessed that my future would end like this. I never would have believed that things would get to the point I would EVER give up but things happen to the best of us. A line in the sand was drawn for me and I have failed wether I step over it or cower on the safe side. I know what happens on the safe side so I choose the unknown….. On that same note I have always heard and wondered what marijuanna was like. I have known alot of people that used it and they always laughed alot. Drunks are to violent and unhappy so alcohol is out. I choose never to be intoxicated because it was not the responsible way to behave. I read the news about a couple states trying to legalize it and that has my curiosity going. Maybe I will take a few dollars and see if I can find some and see if it is as enlightening as some profess it to be. I would like to be able to laugh again even if just once to remember feeling good about something even if its synthetic, what have I got to loose.

    Peace folks.


    November 1, 2012 at 11:00 pm

  172. Me too i dont have a job..and i am worried about my family because my husband got firedrecently..were both jobless..i tried to apply in callcenters but they would only take ppl with experience..hey dats why i am here to learn n work with them ..how wil they know wat i can do if they wont take a chance on me


    August 2, 2013 at 4:53 am

  173. Frustrating isn’t it!
    I am a 100% service connected disabled Veteran of the Viet Nam Conflict LOL (57000) KIA. I entered the Homebuilding Industry as a young man because it was apparent I could make a good living without a formal education. I over the last 35 years have come to respect those of you who put in the time and acquired your degree.
    Here is my offer. I am retired but hold a General Contractors License in California as well as a Drywall License. I will teach one person the business and license your construction company. This means you create a Corporation or LCL and I will qualify for the General Contractors License required.
    I don’t want pay just to teach an ambitious person the business. It can be very lucrative for the right person

    Randall S Costner

    August 14, 2013 at 12:36 pm

  174. How are all of you going? If anyone is still managing this blog pls respond.


    August 20, 2013 at 1:49 am

  175. I’ve been in the workforce for 30+ years and have never been unemployed…even as a contractor. I have not always been paid great wages, but the jobs with the lower wages paved the way with the experience I needed to gradually move up the rungs of the corporate ladder. One piece of advice I’d give to all of you college graduates (I just finished my PhD)…Never feel you are too educated to work in fast food, retail, production, factories, ets. I have heard and felt it myself that some jobs may be below my skills or education but….they paid the bills and regardless of the job, they all taught me something. From valuable people skills, situation skills, management skills, conflict resolution skills, and I could go on and on…Some call these soft skills…but these skills enabled me to be successful as I moved up the corporate ladder. Embrace whatever opportunity is placed in front of you for it is more noble to work a menial job with pride and pay your own bills than it is to suck our government system dry because you believe you are beneath the fast food or retail industries. As I crept (ever so slowly) up the ladder, I worked many more than 40 hour weeks (for no overtime pay) and lost a lot of sleep as I continued to educate myself in whatever field of work I happened to be in…and it finally paid off. But I would have starved if it weren’t for those fast food workers who made my dinner when I didn’t have time to do so myself! They are all essential jobs regardless of where you are in the world! Never forgot where you came from….An education opens doors to opportunities. It does not guarantee anything! You must build your resume and your reputation…You are in full control of what that education will do for you. Work ethic and tenacity will pay bigger dividends than welfare. Now that I hire people, I’d much rather hire a person who worked at McDonalds or Wendy’s for several years (during their college years and even after college) than one who drew unemployment because they were higher educated than the fast food workers. These fast food workers will have the people skills honed to perfection after dealing with the unfriendly public and they will fully appreciate a professional work environment after scrubbing toilets and greasy floors! I wish you all the luck in the world in finding your dream job…but in the meantime…don’t hesitate to just work!


    October 2, 2013 at 1:00 pm

  176. I know exactly how you feel. I have a job, just not the one I got my graduate degree in. It is ridiculous that I find out once I graduate that my degree is too much for one set of jobs, and yet not enough for what I really want to do! Now I struggle trying to decide on how to go back and get my PhD, while paying $40,000 in student loans back with less than that in annual income…. How did our country get here? I thought for sure this would be an easier road with an advanced degree, yet it seemed like all the politicians and teachers lied : (

    Melissa Scaparo

    October 7, 2013 at 12:48 pm

  177. I am 24 years old. I received my bachelors degree in May of 2011 and my Masters in Healthcare Administration in August of 2013. I spent the better part of 2011 and all of 2012 unemployed. I found a job (RETAIL) in May 2013 where my boss (probably didn’t even have a high school degree) acted rude and demeaning towards me on a daily basis. I dreaded going to work everyday and I felt so hopeless. I had to leave less than 4 months later. I’m a married woman, my husband’s job just moved him down to part-time due to budget cuts, I have a beautiful 1 year old boy.
    My parents always drilled education into my head and told me it was the way to succeed, oh how very wrong. Now my husband, son and I are living in my parents home. I have submitted hundreds of applications (at every level) with no luck. What is wrong with me? I am so sad. I am so desperate.


    October 13, 2013 at 7:33 pm

  178. There are a lot of us who are unemployed or underemployed with no hope for a better future yet no one is addressing this issue. At least no one in power, that is. Very disturbing indeed.
    I myself am now no longer “young.” Like Peter, I’m overqualified for most of the service jobs out there. The trend is to hire people who are very young or who can’t speak English so as to pay them less. Seems a conspiracy to dumb down the job market, lower wages, few benefits, employees who are used to being treated badly.

    I’ll probably have to commit suicide whether I like it or not if I can’t get things together soon. Right now, I’m looking into starting a business, but I’ve been trying to do that for years now with no success–mainly because I don’t have money or connections and everything I like to do or am good at seems to lead to very little money. But I’ll keep trying for a little while longer.

    But if things don’t get better I’ll end up homeless and will have to commit suicide as I’m not good at living off the streets.


    October 28, 2013 at 2:06 pm

  179. please dont kill yourself if you become homeless


    October 30, 2013 at 6:41 pm

  180. call me at 7046829412 and maybe i can help you the day you become homeless. please dont end it. youre important 🙂


    October 30, 2013 at 6:45 pm

  181. Snowbrother, I feel for you because I’m in a similar boat. I don’t’ want you to commit suicide. I can offer you shelter in my home. Sent a reply if, u need me. I will continue to check this site.


    November 6, 2013 at 8:28 pm

  182. I’ve been there, get your three years and find something better. The economy is to blame too….


    November 12, 2013 at 5:45 pm

  183. To all those thinking of committing suicide, please don’t. The bad situation is only temporary. Who knows, the break you are waiting for might just be around the corner.


    November 23, 2013 at 10:23 pm

  184. I am definitely among the long-term unemployed. It was 11 years this past September 30
    when it started. I am 46, educated, with a BA in an in-demand social science from one
    of the best Big 10 universities, a masters degree in a hard-core social-science-related
    discipline from a great PAC 10 university, and about nine years of post-graduate work
    experience, inclusive of seven years divided roughly equally between two nationally-known
    research institutions. My career track derailed 8 years ago when my contract ended.

    In the years since, I have interviewed for a number of different jobs, in the private
    and public sectors, and have qualified to be on job lists for high-level research
    positions with my state, my County, and my City, and have been found qualified
    for high-level six-figure positions with the federal government, but for one reason
    or another, have been unable as of yet to land a position, in some cases because
    I apparently wasn’t the very best candidate, and in other cases, the job lists exist,
    but the jobs themselves never seem to become available. At this point, I’m
    beginning to wonder if I ever will work again.

    I am also beginning to wonder what I did wrong, and how in the world it could
    have come to this. I thought I did everything that they told us to do…stay in
    school, do well in high school to get into a good college on a partial scholarship,
    get through college, go to grad school somewhere, then find a position
    somewhere… Apparently, that’s not enough these days, with the competition as
    severe as it has ever been, you almost need an “in” somewhere with someone,
    above and beyond the credentials and everything else.

    Each day I surf the internets and put out the resumes for positions which I am
    either well-qualified, over-qualified or possibly qualified, and the responses these
    days are fewer and far between than they ever were… but thank God the phone
    still does ring from time to time.

    I’m not ready to bag my educational background and work experience and start
    over from scratch…..and I’m not looking to dumb-down my CV either… but at this
    point, I don’t know what else to do or where else to turn.

    Un Employed

    January 1, 2014 at 3:38 pm

  185. I’m so glad I found this site. It feels like I’ve finally found people, like me, to talk to about my situation. Beats talking to those miserable bastards who run the unemployment benefits center!

    I’ve just turned 20 this month, and finished my A-levels last year in July. Since then, I’ve been pushed by my parents to hunt for a job or sign up for benefits. I actually managed to get an apprenticeship as an admin in September, but I quit within a month. As ‘lucky’ as I was, 9hr days and slander from my colleagues were not worth the measly £2 an hour. Apprenticeships are a joke; they see you as nothing more than cheap labor. Half the employers don’t even know you’re there to be trained.

    So here I am, in my 3rd month of unemployment and back to square one. My mum tells me she was already living with my dad, paying a mortgage, and had a full-time job by the time she was my age. How depressing to think that I can’t even afford a car, let alone find a job. It doesn’t help that my clinical depression is harming my chances I have of holding down any sort of job. To think I wasted 3 years on further studies, all with above-average grades, and yet I can’t even find work.

    The more I think about it, the less enthusiastic I become about life. What’s the point of living or getting a decent education if it means I’ll be stuck in a monotonous job for decades? Hopefully something good will come along, but my luck is notoriously bad.


    January 19, 2014 at 11:35 pm

  186. Jobs are hard to find, but while our government screws up everything and causes wars, cheap products from China and overseas will not be able to get to us. We will need to become self sufficient once again. It will happen soon. My suggestion is to get loans for school and live off of them. The dollar will crash, and it won’t be worth anything when you graduate anyways. Why suffer now if you could put it off. Find something you like online, get loans that allow you to live, then stay home, eat right, get exercise, and enjoy your studying. Eventually it will all fall apart anyways, so why try to find a minimum wage job. My wife and I will continue to go to school and get loans, bring up our child, and eventually we will get a pension. If we can’t pay back the loans, they can only take so much out of your pension. We want to work hard and earn and pay back everything, but why suffer now and hate life. It will all fall apart soon, and we will all have to rebuild the country.

    Jack Malloy

    March 11, 2014 at 5:09 am

  187. It’s 2014 when I am leaving a reply, and things have not gotten better economy or job wise. I also have a M.S. degree, and I work in education. Education is viewed as elite, but I am here to tell you, it’s far from that. I am so unhappy, but I have to stick where I am at. It took me from 2003-2006 to find a full-time job. The starting salary was that of an A.A. degree, but I took it for the little pay and benefits hoping to move up. I have stayed in my job since 2006, and I have moved up but with little $ to show for it. We are on year to year contracts in my state, so job stability in teaching is non-existent. This whole “shoot for the stars” or “be what you want to me” is bull. The reality is that the American Dream has been shot to hell in our lifetime. I grew up in the 80s, so I believed in working hard and that was grained into me. But now, when I look around and see it’s more profitable to have a bunch of babies, get a welfare check, and sit at home rather than deal with the stresses and an early grave that comes with the working world, it just makes me sick. Why did I work so hard to get all of this education when people look at me and are threatened by me and my skills while also blocking my ability to grow professionally and move up the chain? I feel you man. Keep writing.


    February 1, 2015 at 5:33 pm

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