Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Feeling less like a "young" professional

Wow, once again I am looking at this blog and seeing how much time has slipped away once again. I am not sure how easy I originally thought it was going to be to keep up with a blog, but I should have been able to guess based upon my many failed journal attempts.

The reason I came back to the blog is that I have recently started a new job that is venturing into the arena of new media for the first time. We have a facebook page, an e-newsletter, a blog, and thinking about a twitter account. But I have so many mixed feelings about what is the most important thing to expend energy on. I am ceaselessly amazed at how much time I can spend looking and interacting with Facebook. Multiply that by each social media outlet you can participate with, and in no time you can spend hours each day keeping up.

I am also looking at the title of this blog and smirking some. I can't recall when I first started this posting (I could probably look that up, but I am in edit mode right now), but it has probably been at least three or four years. Although that isnt long, and I am only a few years older, I am not sure that that moniker "young" museum professional is really apt any more.

this past year has brought a lot of change for me both professionally and personally. My old job as director of exhibits and programs was eliminated this spring and I, along with several friends and colleagues, found myself without employment. Although I was allowed to transition into a temporary position, it was important that I move on. I was extremely fortunate to not only land a new job back in my home state, but I was able to make a move up. Well, its a move up in title and position at least. I became director at a local history museum just west of Denver and it has been a fun and challenging new opportunity.

The original purpose of this blog was to offer a venue for emerging professionals to talk about issues as they grow and progress in their career, ask advice, and voice frustration. What is interesting to me is the many and varied ways that people can move through their career in this field. The opportunities are limited, the market is competative, the economy is challenging, yet people are still growing and advancing. I'm interested in hearing how other people are making head way. How have things changed for you in the past year? What new challenges lie ahead? Are you planning on sticking in your current job, or actively seeking new opportunities?

3 comments:

Pam Schwartz said...

It seems our field is very fluid and at any given time it's easy to move forward or fall backwards. A few years ago when I graduated from undergrad I had an extremely easy time finding unpaid internships or parallel career moves in the field, but was finding it impossible to move up.

I made the decision to go back to school and am currently at Seton Hall University. So many challenges lie ahead, but so do many amazing opportunities to do what I am passionate about. As emerging professionals, I think we need to remember that there is so much room for unstructured movement and you never know what will come up. The important thing is to be passionate, keep trying and most importantly keep talking to others in the field.

(Pam Schwartz blogs at http://madamuseo.wordpress.com/ )

Courtney said...

Nathan, I'm right there with you. Nothing like moving up to director of your department--and then having a baby!--to make one feel not so "young." I haven't been active on here in a while, and that's largely because life has just gotten so busy (I, too, have a litany of journals started then dropped over the years), but also because I guess I kind of feel like I'm in much less of a position to grouse about things than I was when I first joined on as a YMP blogger. But clearly with the climate out there there's still a lot of grousing to be done.

Let's hope those of us who are still young-ish, but now in leadership positions, have the opportunity and the will to work towards some of the changes we'd been talking about on here over those last 4 years or so...

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