Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Use unpaid work to get paid work

Service is good for you! 

Yes, it's good for those people and organizations you serve. Yes, it "builds character" and makes you feel connected to the world around you. Yes, it kills time in a far healthier way than playing video games for hours at a time. Yes, it allows you to meet interesting people and make friends. Yes, it's a big part of a Niagara University education.

But service--volunteering to work for no pay, especially in causes related to your chosen career field--can help you find a real job. This article points out why and how, and perhaps gives you some ideas about how to optimize your choice of service opportunities.

Of particular interest is the first of the six reasons listed in this article: discrimination against people who are presently unemployed. State legislatures are finding it necessary to pass laws against the increasingly common practice of refusing to hire anyone who does not already have a job. As you know, just because there's a law against it doesn't mean employers won't try to squirm around it... the bias may persist. But being engaged in a fairly substantial volunteer gig helps dissipate some of the stigma that you are (a) presently unemployed, and therefore (b) unemployable, a leftover, defective goods.

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