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RE: Future Structural Engineer

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Phil,

Don't be so hard on yourself.  When I graduated with a BS in 1975, there was
a bad recession.  Only 2 of 12  CE's had a job at Graduation.  Several of my
friends were working at department stores months later waiting on
engineering jobs to open.

In 1992 there was another dip in the building market and I along with
several engineers had the opportunity to look for new employment.

Today, almost 10 years later, we are back in a recession.  I heard stories
about structural engineers doing sales jobs and building houses (hammering
etc.)

This happens to our profession when things slow down.  Even the 4.0 student
must face this.  Hang in there and keep looking.  When things turn around
they seem to do it fast and you may find you are faced with several job
offers.

Ron Hill

-----Original Message-----
From: Phillip Rogers [mailto:perogers(--nospam--at)rocketmail.com]
Sent: Wednesday, October 31, 2001 11:44 AM
To: seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org
Subject: Future Structural Engineer


Hello all,

I am a graduate with a BS in Civil/Structural
engineering.  I have been out of school for about 9
months trying very hard to find a job in the
structural area.  This is my emphasis and strong
interest.  I am very frustrated with my inability to
find a job.

When I first graduated I was waiting on a hiring
freeze for nearly 5 months to begin working with a
company.  The freeze was never lifted.  This process
was repeated about 2 more times.  Thus my past 9
months have been a waste.  Of course hindsite is
20/20, and I wish that I had taken some kind of job.
But, I have always had a strong job lead that has
prevented me from making any commitments to a job.

My dilema is this.  I know I have a lot to offer.
However, my GPA was fairly low (2.6)and I have been
out of work.  But I have kept myself busy with
visiting family, job search, college math tutoring,
learning structural software, and volunteering my
services to painting some murals for a church.  I am
worried how all this makes me look.  How do I present
myself to potential employers and overshadow these
negative points that are not indicative of the kind of
person/worker that I am.

The GPA subject has been a sensitive one for me.  I
know that my abilities and work ethic are much better
than that.  I encountered some very personal
situations (not due to any irresponsibility of my own)
outside of school that required me to be out of town
alot and was a hinderance to my studies.  Of my 9
semesters in school, 2 semesters are what caused my
grades to plummet.  The other 7 were pretty good.
If I am asked about my grades, how do I present myself
as much better than my GPA shows, without looking like
I am making excuses.  I feel like there is no engineer
out there who understands what I am talking about.
Did every engineer cruise through college without
facing any obstacles outside of the classroom?
Throughout school I was a strong A-B student when it
came to projects and assignments.  But as you all know
that accounts for very little of a course grade.

I am an entry level candidate with no structural
engineering related experience.  I have summer
experience as survey/site draftsman and in the general
non-technical business sector.

I have 2 interviews scheduled over the next 5 business
days for positions that I am very interested in.  The
structural engineering market seems to be picking up
some in my area of the country, finally.

Any advice, for this longwinded message.

Thanks

Phil Rogers, EI




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