Fox's Journey: And Onto the Sunlight!

Where are you and where are you going?
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TopHatFox
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by TopHatFox » Fri Feb 23, 2018 8:23 pm

Yeah, I hear you that my geology grades suck. But, my overall GPA is a 3.4, I have excellent recommendations from a few professors who I've now talked to for years, and I can write well. What I'm thinking will be best is finding a list of Masters I can complete in 1-2 years that not only have excellent job prospects on average (as in, even the low-end outcome is good), but that lead to work that I can sustainably do for a couple years. Then, I can pick one of these masters and find a good yet affordable graduate program for that degree. Since the degree is in demand, I can pick a few states I like and go practice the degree there. Fast forward a few years and fortified FI with a marketable skill to fall back on.
Last edited by TopHatFox on Fri Feb 23, 2018 8:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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daylen
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by daylen » Fri Feb 23, 2018 8:28 pm

I'm curious what made you choose to study geology. What did you have in mind when you graduated?

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TopHatFox
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by TopHatFox » Fri Feb 23, 2018 8:30 pm

https://www.amherst.edu/academiclife/departments

These were my options. The only other marketable degree on there is Computer Science, which I almost failed. : )

EdithKeeler
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by EdithKeeler » Sat Feb 24, 2018 12:18 pm

I thought you just started a new job? Also—why do you have to come back to NY for the orthodontic surgery and work? I’m sure there are docs in Miami that do the same thing.

Just curious.

trailblazer
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by trailblazer » Sat Feb 24, 2018 7:14 pm

I think the B’s and C’s in geology are a good indication that you should not pursue grad studies in that field. Not because you can’t force yourself to do it, but rather as an indication that this is not the area where you want to spend your life.

You had enough rigor/success in your undergrad to at least be getting “looks at the ball” in terms of the job market. You did a great job putting yourself in that position, with 60K savings to boot! I think most recent grads would kill for the types of employment opportunities you have been exposed to. (I know I would have!) I understand the jobs are not your desired positions or location, but that will sort itself out over the next couple of years.

Back in college, I majored in something highly non-marketable (what the Amherst list would refer to as “interdisciplinary studies”). I then pursued multiple grad degrees that were highly practical and somewhat technical - degrees of the type where people say “oh we will always need people trained in those skills” - and I was eventually able to be in a position by my mid- to late- 30’s to more or less “retire” . . .

But it would have been so much more efficient to just spend a couple years after undergrad pursing different opportunities, even with my ridiculous liberal arts major. I can force myself to do technical work, but like you, my heart wasn’t in it and I was much more interested in the human side of things. Eventually I succeeded professionally by gradually shifting my job into the human side of things.

Grad school is seductive - it provides a clear path/plan for those who are not sure what to do next - don’t fall for it!

My sense from following your journal is that you are highly competent in terms of being disciplined and following a system (such as ERE), but that you still lack what one of my former bosses referred to as “iterations” (repeat interactions with the real world). I think you should spend at least two years in the workforce before pursuing grad studies.

p.s. I think you should get a job at a college as an admissions counselor, student activities, student life, resident director, etc. seems like a perfect fit for what you’ve done in the past and what you like to do. Will give you enough income to live cheaply and achieve ERE, and may even provide free tuition for some sort of grad degree.

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TopHatFox
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by TopHatFox » Sat Feb 24, 2018 9:46 pm

@trailblazer - absolutely! I've started targeting those posts and got an interview as a program coordinator at Georgia State's World Affairs Council. It would pay 35K in a much better place, and a friend of mine works there already. I'm aiming for something like that and taking it from there! I'm filled with excitement in leaving NY for sunnier, happier, and less-expensive pastures. ~~~

trailblazer
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by trailblazer » Sat Feb 24, 2018 9:53 pm

cool that would be a great fit

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TopHatFox
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by TopHatFox » Sun Feb 25, 2018 10:18 am

@Edith - I hadn't started any of the jobs I had listed. The Case Planner role was in the Bronx and filled with overworked and underpaid staff. The work itself is dangerous in a dangerous area, and often involves staying with a foster child until 1 AM in the morning at the hospital. The Coach-Mentors job sounded pretty cool, but it was only for a few hours a week. Additionally, it all doesn't matter because I'd still be in NY, and I do not want to be here for even another week. I get a spike of joy just thinking about leaving. I've decided to fly out the week of March 5th, and I am psyched! It'll be awesome to find a college coordinator job in Denver or this gig in Atlanta. :D :D :D

As far as the orthodontia and surgery, the COBRA insurance I have may switch and not cover the jaw surgery if I change its address or provider. I can switch the orthodontist, and that would be OK. Thing is, I don't know whether I'll be in Miami for the next year, or for the next month or two as I find a coordinator job at a college in a place I like and go live there. I'd be more inclined to switch the orthodontist if I know I've found a place I can stay for a while. Before then, just flying back and forth ~6 times before surgery isn't too bad considering C has flight benefits that make each flight cost $0-100 ea.

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TopHatFox
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by TopHatFox » Sun Feb 25, 2018 2:51 pm

I got the book Reconnaisance Man. It's been proving handy for targetting my job and grad school search to the best of the states of the US, while keeping out of the worst. Naturally, NYC and NY tops the list of the worst places for young people to live. I knew I was on to something ~

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BRUTE
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by BRUTE » Sun Feb 25, 2018 4:38 pm

brute likes the idea of scouting around for what one likes, but it's quite obvious that the writer has a particular taste in life and lifestyle, and that heavily colors his writing. and how could it not? but it's something to be aware of. not all humans flourish best in North Dakota (or whatever he ends up worshipping, brute forgets).

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TopHatFox
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by TopHatFox » Sun Feb 25, 2018 4:47 pm

Yeah, agreed. The book makes it clear to make your own criteria, while still giving suggestions. His criteria of sunny climate, low taxes, abundant adventure, and fit people sound pretty good to me.

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bryan
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by bryan » Sun Feb 25, 2018 6:33 pm

TopHatFox wrote:
Sun Feb 25, 2018 2:51 pm
I got the book Reconnaisance Man. It's been proving handy for targetting my job and grad school search to the best of the states of the US, while keeping out of the worst. Naturally, NYC and NY tops the list of the worst places for young people to live. I knew I was on to something ~
The blurb on Amazon sounds like it is a good book for you. I would preach a bit of skepticism about putting too much weight into one's imagined future, though; especially for someone very young without much experience. Many times the actual future won't be close to one's expectations. Dampening expectations can lead you to be pleasantly surprised (and also don't be afraid of trying something not great as you may also be pleasantly surprised), imo.

One book I recommend highly to others early in their careers is Career Intensity by Lorenzo.

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BRUTE
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by BRUTE » Sun Feb 25, 2018 9:08 pm

TopHatFox wrote:
Sun Feb 25, 2018 4:47 pm
His criteria of sunny climate, low taxes, abundant adventure, and fit people sound pretty good to me.
there's definitely worse.
bryan wrote: I would preach a bit of skepticism about putting too much weight into one's imagined future, though; especially for someone very young without much experience. Many times the actual future won't be close to one's expectations.
so much this. brute could never have imagined his future, even just a few years ago for a rolling period at least 7-10 years back. shit just kept happening, and brute felt more like a twig in a river than anything. most of the shit was good in some way, some of it was bad in some ways. overall, brute can't complain, but he also can't claim that he "did" any of it.

slowtraveler
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by slowtraveler » Sun Feb 25, 2018 10:16 pm

Seriously, planning helps to direct focus but life rarely turns out the way I planned. I wish I could say I was responsible for my successes but I just took advantage of the opportunities in my path. Some of these I had to create but they were unique to my own situation and not predictable 5 years in advance.

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daylen
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by daylen » Sun Feb 25, 2018 11:18 pm

I think it varies from person to person. If your strategy is general enough then you have a good chance of reaching your goals. The ability to control your future is correlated with your conscientiousness and where your are at in the actualization process.

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TopHatFox
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by TopHatFox » Mon Feb 26, 2018 10:36 am

I agree with Daylen - having a general idea and strategy works to direct one's focus. You can't control people or places, but you can control the people you allow in your life and where you live

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bryan
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by bryan » Mon Feb 26, 2018 6:17 pm

My post wasn't so much about control as it was about expectations, predicting.

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TopHatFox
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by TopHatFox » Mon Feb 26, 2018 7:28 pm

Yeah, I think you're right on having lower expectations and being happily surprised as a result. It's a good reminder of Stoic teachings!

NPV
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by NPV » Tue Feb 27, 2018 4:01 am

I remember gleaning a bit of your earlier adventures from other topics (Amherst, investing job at a foundation, polyamory etc.) and have read the latest few pages of this topic (looking at completely unrelated jobs and specialties)... Is there any summary of your journey for those not willing to read 15 pages? :) Must have been quite a ride...

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TopHatFox
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Re: Fox's Journey: Out of the Burrow

Post by TopHatFox » Tue Feb 27, 2018 1:14 pm

@NPV: Yeah - > Graduates college -> gets punched in the face -> learns how to swim


I use to think that one can be happy no matter the corcumstances. But I think humans are more affected by their envoronment. One is more likely to be happy in a sunny, warm climate; more likely to be happy if drinking enough water and eating enough healthful food; more likely to be happy if surrounded by close friends, a partner, and family; and more likely to be happy if financially secure and doing meaningful work. The goal then is to consistently attain these factors.

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