Thursday, March 15, 2012

Breaking out of the tedium

Job hunting is boring.  Checking job boards, filling out the same forms online, sending emails and leaving voicemails... it's the monotony that is really wearing on me these days.  I just got a rejection for a job I don't remember applying for, what does that say?  It says I need to try something new so I don't present myself as a zombie candidate "Want JOOOOOBB...."

Folks usually have similar advice for me, " Have you tried the UW?" "Your network is really important." (Why do you think we are drinking coffee here?).  I chatted with a really cool guy at one of the not-for-profit research institutes here about new ways to think of and look at the job hunt, so I wanted to share them.  He suggested some ideas I hadn't thought of before, including industries I hadn't thought I could break into.

For example, bio-surveillance is growing in this area.  It's driven by federal money to the Navy and their contractors (Northrup Gruman, Boeing).  Or he suggested approaching clinical epidemiology for the major insurers as a biostatistician. ("Can you do a two tailed T test?  You'll be fine.")  He also suggested watching real estate announcements in the paper for major purchases by out of town biotechs, that's how he learned of a new major player in pharma moving to town.  He encouraged me to go to MeetUps (people still do that), since there are some good professional ones in Seattle, which sounds like a less stuffy way to interact with folks.  See, new, fun ideas to get over the tired old job hunt.

He runs a well attended LinkedIn group in Computational Biology- if this even slightly overlapps with your interests, I'd recommend you check it out.  It's quite relevant.

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