The New York Times featured an interactive article that compared the job growth of different industries during the recession. There were some unsurprising trends, such as the sharp decline of the housing industry and manufacturing, and the rise in online shopping outlets.
From a unemployed chemist’s point-of-view, the market is theoretically good.
- The Biotech sector is steadily growing;
- The oil and gas industries are booming;
- “Physical, engineering and life sciences research” has remained steady. (Is that laughter I hear?)
However, like a reaction that looks feasible on paper, but turns into brown, inseparable sludge in a round-bottom flask, these statistics don’t translate into feasible job postings or offers.
Recessions usually result in decreased spending on inessential goods and services, such as mani-pedis. However, the opposite has happened–nail salons are booming, and the number of jobs has skyrocketed. Of course, I can’t imagine anyone with a college degree jumping at an offer to sniff nail polish fumes all day. On the other hand, a nail salon worker makes the same salary as an adjunct chemistry professor. Another industry that has seen growth is the pet services industry. Whether you groom, train or walk a pet, there’s a demand for it.
If you want to transition into a career without investing in re-training (to break into software development), or moving to North Dakota (or any other oil-rich region), there’s always this: