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If academia doesn't work out...


NUMDS

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Let's hope for the best and cross that bridge when we come to it.

I am going to get a job where I can have lots of time to come back here and tell the current applicants that they are making the wrong decisions and that they should pursue any career besides political science. Who knows? We can also work in some aspects of government. I have an MPA and some experience with the USDA so I am sure something could work out. I also worked in retail for awhile, I suppose that is always an option. As scpol put it, I am hoping for the best!

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Hey don't get so down! Personally, while I of course would love to have a TT position at an awesome university or liberal arts college, I'd be psyched to a have a position at a think tank or be a govt advisor for the State Dept or perhaps an expert at the UN. Maybe a Political Science PhD isn't as versatile as, say, a PhD in Stats or Econ, but there are still tons of opportunities for us outside of academia.

I was thinking more along the lines of not getting in anywhere or funded with my post.

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Academia isn't my first choice.

At this point I'm starting to question whether or not I even really need a PhD, which makes me feel awful considering how expensive all of these applications were. I think it's the pressure from all of these big schools to just churn out papers. I'd probably be happy with an MA.

I think I want to work for a think tank, or maybe later on at least. I'm really young though and I'm a little scared I'll be giving away my youth so soon.

I want to travel. I don't want to be stuck in an office just reading and writing about other places and not actually being there. I love studying Chinese and Japanese. I see how much fun my Japanese professor has teaching English, and I really enjoyed helping my Japanese roommate with her papers my freshman year. I'd be happy teaching English in Japan, China, or Taiwan, I think.

All I know is I hate where I am right now and it makes me depressed and it's far too easy to lose focus of what I enjoy. :(

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  • 3 weeks later...

Hey don't get so down! Personally, while I of course would love to have a TT position at an awesome university or liberal arts college, I'd be psyched to a have a position at a think tank or be a govt advisor for the State Dept or perhaps an expert at the UN. Maybe a Political Science PhD isn't as versatile as, say, a PhD in Stats or Econ, but there are still tons of opportunities for us outside of academia.

Good luck trying to work for the UN. My father has worked in HR for the UN for over 30 years and everytime they post a job, it's already taken by someone already in the organization or someone with connections. It's not really an open system. Even when you take the national exam there are always politics involved.

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Good luck trying to work for the UN. My father has worked in HR for the UN for over 30 years and everytime they post a job, it's already taken by someone already in the organization or someone with connections. It's not really an open system. Even when you take the national exam there are always politics involved.

I may have an opportunity to work as a volunteer officer for the World Health Organization this March. Do you think volunteering is a good way to start if one is interested in working for organizations like the UN or WHO in the future?

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Good luck trying to work for the UN. My father has worked in HR for the UN for over 30 years and everytime they post a job, it's already taken by someone already in the organization or someone with connections. It's not really an open system. Even when you take the national exam there are always politics involved.

wow. i have family members who worked in the UN system as well. but that was a decade ago. i knew things had gotten bad, but i didn't realize they were that bad. so would you argue that unless you've got strings to pull applying for the posts they list online is simply a waste of time? somber thought.

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wow. i have family members who worked in the UN system as well. but that was a decade ago. i knew things had gotten bad, but i didn't realize they were that bad. so would you argue that unless you've got strings to pull applying for the posts they list online is simply a waste of time? somber thought.

Sorry you guys. I didn't want to be a total downer. My parents have both worked at the U.N. over 30 years. That's where they met. It's just a lot harder to get in than it used to be. Never go in as a general service. Always go in as a professional, which requires at least an M.A. or you'll have trouble getting promoted once you get your graduate degree. It's not impossible to get a job there now, it's just quite a bit harder, particularly because they also have country quotas. Each year the national exam is only offered to people from specific countries. Last year the U.S. was on the list so you have to wait until your country is on the list again. Again, it's not impossible to get a job there and the benefits are fantastic (medical, 6 weeks vacation, etc.), but the politics of getting a job there can make very difficult. Interning can help if you can get a well connected mentor who likes you while you're there. He/She can let you know when a position is 'really' open or when something is about to open.

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