Posts Tagged ‘Slate’

Finding a do-gooding job in ‘this economy’

Saturday, May 16th, 2009

with the added energy and opportunities as a result of the Serve America Act, recently signed by President Obama

If you’re able to consider shorter-term positions that allow you to gain invaluable experience for very little pay, then this is a great time to look at national service programs such as AmeriCorps and the Peace Corps.

I would usually wholeheartedly agree that volunteer work abroad is a great way to accrue international/intercultural experience beneficial to an international career, and I still do, though at the moment with a much more reflective and critical eye than usual. More on what I mean and on the merits of international volunteerism very soon. [I'm also a little puzzled that the Stonesfiers consider the Peace Corps a "shorter term" opportunity, as the minimum committment is 27 months, a fact they note later in the article. Two-plus years hardly strikes me as shorter term.]

Anyway, also notable is the “follow the money”:

That’s right, even today’s nonprofit sector, with its belt tightening and consolidation, has significant activity that results in new job openings for the right candidates. So follow the philanthropic news. Set up an RSS feed or follow a site that aggregates the top nonprofit news, such as this one, to help you sort out what and who is giving and getting new grants…

Track USAID’s grants and contracts (a lot of their dollars go to U.S.-based organizations working overseas) via their press releases and other news feeds. If you see a new leader announced for a nonprofit you love, a merger announced between two nonprofits, a new strategy declared by a leader in your field, or any other news that might indicate a change in “business as usual,” then get going! They may need new qualified folks to get the job done.

Sister Cities International recently got a large new grant, and with it came a slew of new job openings. I think this and the Stonesfiers’ idea to track new grants at organizations where you might want to work qualifies as a practical example of how job searching in these fields (or any fields) is not simply about browsing open positions, but also paying attention to and being immersed in the broader events and issues of the sector.

Hat tip: reader Andrew Farrand at Georgetown SFS