Jan
28
2008

Job Offers Galore

bya Gabrielle at 2:28 PM

People always say that once you’ve been offered a job, and you’ve accepted it, a half a dozen more will be laid at your feet.  Since being offered the job at USC(University of South Carolina) on Friday, I have been offered two different DSS(Department of Social Services) positions.

One was a Human Services Specialist in the food stamps department and the other was also a Human Services Specialist working in the Adult Protective Services department.  The one in the food stamps department only offered $20,248 a year.  I probably only would have taken that one if there were no other offers at the time.  The one in the ADS department was offering $28,000, a fairly nice sum of cash, but I don’t know how much I would have enjoyed old people with dementia trying to fight me.  I am all about helping people, but I don’t know how long I would have been able to do that.

USC hasn’t gotten my background check back in yet.  That should be coming in in the next fews days.  Once they get it, they will give me a definite start date.  I’ll be curious to hear whether or not I got the Blue Cross Blue Shields job.  I don’t really want it, I just want to find out what the salary is for the position.  They didn’t tell me in the interview and it wasn’t listed on their site either.

Well, I better get back to my cross stitching. I want to have this done before I start working. I’ll try thinking of another interesting China story.

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Jan
23
2008

Update: Unemployment

bya Gabrielle at 12:43 PM

One of these days, this update has to end.

Early this morning, I had an interview with another DSS location, this time for the position of an Adult Protection Services worker. The interview went fairly well and the pay isn’t bad. I could definitely live on $28,000 a year. I had to sign yet another SLED background check form. By the time I get a job, SLED is going to know me on a first name basis. They also wanted to get fingerprints, but the woman that does that sort of thing wasn’t there.  I’ll have to go back to have that done.  Before they can even offer me a job, they have to get the results back on the background and my fingerprints.

Well, I guess I passed my writing test because tomorrow, I have an interview with Blue Cross Blue Shields for the position of Instructional Writer I.  I was a little nervous when I got the call because the woman on the phone was a bit hesitant when she began talking to me.  I thought she was trying to figure out the best way to tell me that I failed and that I could retake the test in six months if I wished, but she was only double checking whom I would be interviewing with and where.  At this point, I have no idea what the salary for the position is or when they expect to fill it.  I’m just psyched that I have the opportunity to interview for the position.  I mean, I don’t know many other jobs that I qualify for out there that are directly related to my degree in English.  I just hope they don’t expect me to have a lot of professional writing experience.  I can write all day on just about anything, but my writing has never been my bread and butter.  I guess I’ll find out tomorrow.  I’ll be interested in what they have to say.

Hopefully, I’ll hear from USC this week and the news will be good.  I’ve got every finger, toe, and hair crossed.   If there is a psychic reading this post, can you please leave a comment telling me how all this is going to work out?  Thanks!

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Jan
18
2008

Update: Unemployment

bya Gabrielle at 4:41 PM

As I see it, I am the closest to landing a job since I first started looking in September.  I had my second interview with University of South Carolina today, and I think it went about as well as it could have. It was a rather interesting interview.  I met the woman I had my initial interview with and she drove me to the office where I was to meet the person who would be conducting my second interview.   It was a first for me, having someone drive me to another location.    It wasn’t very far.  We just had to drive a few blocks down the street.  Basically, she wanted this second person to talk to me and the other remaining candidate before she made her final decision.  We talked for about 50 or so minutes about my strengths, weaknesses, why I wanted the job, a little about my past jobs, a little about my China experience and a few other odds and ends.  He had me sign a few documents.  You know, the one that says if you get hired and we find out you lied, we’ll fire you, and we are going to do a background check on you, if you are hiding anything, we’ll found out about it!  Heh, I’ve got nothing to hide. I have a blog for crying out loud.  :)

Yesterday, I went and had my interview at the Agape English Language Institute.  The guy is not even sure whether or not he will need someone, but if he does, he’ll find out in the beginning of March.  It would only be for 21 hours a week and he may be able to pay up to $15 an hour.  If you do the math, that would be $16,380 a year before taxes.  I just don’t know if this option is going to work out or not.  Plus, I don’t think there are any benefits.  If it was a full time position, it would be a completely different story.  Also, he asked me a question that I have never, ever been asked in an interview.  He asked me what my religion was.  I wanted to say, hey, that’s illegal, you can’t ask me that.  I really didn’t care though.  It didn’t offend me or anything.  I just thought it was a very awkward question.   I told him that I was raised Christian, and then he wanted to know what denomination I was.  I said that I was a Baptist and thought his religious questions were over, but no, he wanted to know if I had a church home in the area.  I was like, gees, do you want to know when I was baptized, too?  He was asking all of these questions because he wants all the students to be surrounded by people with good values and morals.  That’s understandable, but that question is still illegal!  Grr.

I haven’t heard back from any of the DSS locations or Blue Cross Blue Shields.  I guess I’ll hear from them one way or another soon.  I feel really good about the USC position though.  I haven’t felt this positive about a job yet, so maybe it’s a sign or something.  I’ll supposedly find out next week who they chose – me or the other girl.  I’m gonna attach my phone to my hip and jump each and every time that it rings.  If I get the job, I’ll start either February 1st or 15th.  Things are looking up, though, I guess.  Now, if only things will fall into place.

Well, sushi is calling, I better get going.  Thank you all for your words of encouragement and good wishes.  I appreciate it.  One of these days I’ll get a job, and I’ll be able to change the title of these posts to Update: Employed.  Heh.  That would be nice.

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Jan
14
2008

Update: Unemployment

bya Gabrielle at 9:10 PM

Ok, lets see. What has happened since my last update?

Well, for one, I got a call from Blue Cross Blue Shields, and they wanted me to come in for a professional writing test. I applied for the position of Instructional Writer I some time ago, and I guess they just wanted to make sure I knew my stuff before they decided to even considered me for the position. Fair enough, I guess. The test wasn’t too bad. I had to write one business letter and a memo in a forty minute time frame. Since I have never really written a business letter or a memo in my entire life, I doubt I got points for structure. In the grammar and spelling department, I probably did pretty well. I may not be a perfect English major, but there are a few things I learned in college that refuse to leave me. If you have anything drilled into your brain for four years, it is hard to forget it.

Supposedly, I will hear from them in a week or so. That is when they will tell me whether or not I passed, passed with training, or out right failed. If I pass, I guess they’ll ask me in for an interview and then we will go from there. I think it would be funny if I ended up working for the same company as Phil. If they call me up and tell me I failed, I am going to cry myself into an eternal slumber. I mean, if I can’t pass a simple writing test . . . well, I’d rather not go there. Just keep your fingers crossed for me.

The day after my writing test, I had an interview with the Lexington DSS office. This one is much closer than the Eastover office – 28 miles closer – but the salary is much lower – $8,574 lower. I knew that before going, but I figured considering my current position, I should at least go and talk with them in order to keep my options open. It’s an entry level position, so at least there would be a ladder to climb. While I was there, I did take note of the bars at the reception desk and how every single one of the doors in the building were locked. All of the staff members have a key on this pull cord around their neck. One of the women I was sitting beside said, “I think someone went off.” I just nodded my head. Something must have happened. They should make a decision by the end of this week.

Last night, I got an email from a school called Agape English Language Institute. They are located right here in Columbia, and they teach English to foreign nationals. They are a pretty small school, but they finally may need a new teacher beginning in March. It sounds interesting. I’ve yet to actually sit down and talk to the guy who may or may not hire me, but at least now there is a possibility that I could end up teaching English again.

And lastly, I got a call just a few hours ago from the University of South Carolina. The woman wanted to let me know that I was in the top two for the position I had interviewed for before Thanksgiving. This is the Human Resources job if you are trying to keep up. She said she still had to contact my references and that another guy wanted to speak to me before she made her final decision. She said that she hopes to have the position filled by February first. Maybe she will make a decision sooner.

And that is pretty much it for now. All I got to say is that I never want to have to look for a job again. It is one big pain in the ass.

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