Saturday, 21 July 2012

Celebratory; Plus, A Word of Warning

Yesterday brought with it some very good news.  My partner Tim has finally found a job.

Ever since we arrived in Oxford back in September, Tim has been looking for work.  We came over here aware that the jobs market in the UK was not as robust as it was in Saskatchewan (how could it be?  Saskatchewan is booming), but we never expected it would take so long or so many job applications (Tim thinks it must be nearing 100) to find a job.

So, this is the word of warning bit.  If you, dear reader, you happen to be reading this blog ahead of coming to Oxford as a student (or to the UK in general) and you are bringing your partner with you, please know that the jobs market here is extraordinarily competitive at the moment, especially for young people.  The number that keeps being touted is 20% youth unemployment (!).  Also, Oxford seems to be filled to bursting with people with multiple degrees looking for jobs.  Several of the jobs Tim applied for had lines in their regrets letters to the effect of 'We had more applications than we had ever expected...'  One entry-level job ended up with 240 applications.  One, two-days-a-week research position went to someone with two PhDs.

So, begin searching early.  Apply widely - part-time jobs, temporary positions, etc.  Get on with a recruiting agency.  And hope for the best.  I know other graduate students and their partners who are having a great deal of trouble at the moment.

Tim's quite looking forward to his new job, which is happily full-time and with the university, so now he too can have free access to the Bodleian, the colleges, and the Botanic Garden.  It will be strange not having him at home all the time.  Hopefully his working regular hours will encourage me to research and write on more regular hours, leaving evenings and weekends mostly free.

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