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This piece generated a number of comments as well as multiple private notes to my Inside Higher Ed email account. There are a lot of job seekers out there who are hurting right now and/or totally ambivalent about their professional future. I count myself among them. The problem is simple: there are just not enough jobs to go around. For many of us, despite an impressive array of qualifications, the buck stops here.
I am currently in the process of finding and delivering current information on alternate careers for humanities Ph.D.'s. The recession has, unfortunately, complicated things by making just about every level of employment difficult to find at present. Ph.D. or no Ph.D., it is extremely difficult to secure a full-time, ongoing job at the moment in a field relevant to one's degree, work experience, and professional qualifications. Not to mention the difficulty of finding a position that pays a living wage and provides critical employment benefits, especially health insurance.