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Marquez Forrest

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Grad Student Looking For Work

Posted: 07/21/10 08:04 AM ET

After graduating Fisk University with a degree in English and analyzing the job market in 2009, I knew that it would be near-impossible for me to find a journalism job, so I decided I needed a back-up plan. I wanted more experience and skills that would prepare me for the current media market, so I enrolled at Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism. My goal was to acquire crucial skills and experience that would help catapult my career into the next level.

A year later, I found myself in a very similar predicament as to when I graduated Fisk. While I try to remain optimistic about my job prospects, I have discovered that finding a job still seems to be a Sisyphean task clouded in fear and doubt.

One of my biggest disappointments while searching for a job happened several weeks ago. The job seemed perfect for me. It wanted recently graduated students to intern for a year. The job would have provided a stipend, benefits and even a place to live for the duration of the internship. While interning, students would be tasked with writing articles, creating multimedia journalism for the web and shadowing more seasoned journalists within the program. I immediately knew that was the program I wanted to join, and I began contacting references and completing the application form.

Sadly, my optimism was shattered only two days later when the director thanked me for my enthusiasm in the position but informed me that the position had already been filled. Later, another potential employer informed me that she had chosen someone else for the position for which I was applying.

Currently, I am anxiously awaiting responses from two potential employers. Both are dream jobs and would encompass writing, entertainment and using multimedia and alternative journalism to best convey a narrative. Until then, I am working to complete my master's at Northwestern. I expect to graduate at the end of August.

While I have experienced disappointments, I am still highly optimistic that I will find work. I know that it takes persistence and dedication on my part, and I am continuing to search for positions that I believe would best complement me as a person.