Thursday, August 30, 2007
As you may or may not know, I graduated this past May from the University of Maryland with an MA in Communication. (That was before we had a blog, and I’m not good at posting new information, let alone writing about past events.) After two years of being imbued with normative theories of public communication, I have dreams of an exciting, substantive career. However, for three months following graduation, I slogged through an unfruitful, somewhat frustrating job search. Then, on August 15, as a birthday present for Molly and a blessing for the both of us, I got a job as an Associate of Corporate Research for the US Chamber of Commerce.
“What is the US Chamber of Commerce?” you may ask. Well, for starters, it is not a government agency as some people mistakenly assume. That would be the US Department of Commerce. The Chamber is a private, non-profit organization whose mission is “To advance human progress through an economic, political and social system based on individual freedom, incentive, initiative, opportunity, and responsibility.” In other words, it advances the interests of business and free enterprise before Congress, the White House, regulatory agencies, the courts, the court of public opinion, and governments around the world. (Go to its Web site for more information.)
“OK, so what does an Associate of Corporate Research do?” Basically, I do mid-market research and analysis for new member acquisition. For those of you to whom that makes no sense, ask me in person and I’ll explain it better. I don’t want to write it all out. Although the work is not particularly exciting, it is interesting and keeps me engaged. I like my co-workers, and the hours are regular. So far it’s been a good gig.
But alas, it is a temporary position. The Chamber is experimenting with a program that will outsource some of its mid-market research. I was brought on to help manage the work load while the experiment is under way. By the first week in October it will determine whether or not my position will be made permanent. If not, there is a good possibility that I could be transferred to a different department of the Chamber. Even if that is the case, however, I see my work at the Chamber as short term. It’s not something I want to make a career out of. I will continue my job search, although not with the same intensity and urgency, and when I find something that is a better fit for me I will switch.
Until then, I am content with my work at the Chamber. I like to eat lunch in Lafayette Park, which is right across the street from the Chamber. On the other side of Lafayette Park is the White House. One day, while eating lunch, I witnessed a small political rally on Pennsylvania Avenue. Being so close to the nation’s seat of power and working in the middle of everything makes things exciting.
Posted by Andrew at 7:54 AM