Weekend Updates

Thank you so much to those of you who weighed in on the job opportunity analysis in my last post. It was really helpful! Most of you leaned towards the job with the healthcare trust because it's local, pays well, and offers the opportunity to work remotely. Those of you that favored the university job in Oregon mentioned the positives of living near family and having summers off.

After interviewing for both positions, I have an update on the details of each job, as well as my feelings towards them now...

First of all, the Oregon job interview did not go very well. It was a panel interview on a conference call, which I have never experienced and I can now report is super. awkward. I could not see anyone and received very little feedback on my responses, even non-verbal. They were not a warm and friendly crowd. The main interviewer was kind of formal and unhelpful in communicating the expectations and framework of the interview. In "normal" interviews, it is not uncommon to ask to add something at the end that did not come up in the interview, but when I did this, instead of clearly saying, "I'm sorry, we have to stop now due to time," or something like that, she kind of withdrew and begrudgingly said to go ahead, which totally threw me off.

Also, during the interview, I asked about collaborating between the career and advising departments and an idea I had for that, and got a very strange, stilted response about referring students to career counseling, which did not really answer the question. This also threw me off a little, as I had been told by my friend who works there that this is a great idea and they are really looking for innovation. I realized later that I likely stepped into some political sensitivities, because there was a representative from the career services department in the interview, along with the advising representative, who was leading the interview. This whole separation is foreign and non-intuitive to me, as here in California, we simply have college Counselors that do both academic and career counseling, versus dividing out these functions. What is weird is that it seems that advising helps students choose a major/career, my favorite part of the job. I am still a little confused, and not optimistic they will call me back, even though I feel I did very well on the first half to three-fourths of the interview. Oh, and I did re-read the job description and discover it's a 12-month assignment, so no summers off.

In contrast, I felt like I totally rocked the interview with the healthcare trust for a career counseling position. The whole interview felt as comfortable as an interview can feel, even though this one was also over the phone (only one interviewer though). She and I had a lot in common and seemed to totally click. We had moments of understanding and laughter, having both worked for community colleges and for workforce programs. And the core of why we like career counseling seemed to be similar. I am knocking on wood, but I feel I will likely be moved on to the next stage of interviewing, which will indeed be with a panel/committee. Ugh. In any case, she said I should hear back by next week on the details of this. One potential negative I discovered during the interview is that my position is located in Oakland, which is the one location that has a physical office where other Trust staff work. So, I likely would be working from that office part of the time versus fully remotely, although she indicated I would also work from home to some extent, as well as travel out to various healthcare center locations.

I do still feel positive about the Oregon location - central Oregon, which has waaay better weather than where I grew up - and living near family. My brother said he thought we would likely see each other every few weeks and our families could be more in each other's lives. But traveling for CA Conceptions treatments would be costly and less convenient, and I am really appreciating my friendly, healthy housemate situation, especially in comparison to the stress of my last housemate. In addition, she loves Zoey and plays with her regularly. Yay! She generously offers to let her out when she's home and I'm not, and hangs out with her outside or in her room, truly enjoying Zoey's company. I really feel like she adds to the joy in Z's life, which in turn makes me so happy.

Maybe Oregon does make more sense later, if I do decide to go that route... what do you guys think, hearing how things went?

So now I am playing the waiting game and working on getting new clients to make my budget this month. I plan on making outreach phone calls, which I don't enjoy but which sometimes brings referrals. There is an Art in the P@rk festival nearby that I also may check out today. My housemate and I are going to go in on a big nature photo hanging for the living room. Hope you have a great weekend!

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