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Old 04-30-2010, 09:01 PM
 
1 posts, read 4,159 times
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I have been living in the Denver area for a couple of months now, and have applied for a lot of jobs at NREL. I have a PhD, so I would think I would qualify for many of them, but I am having a hard time getting my foot in the door, or even getting interviews. Money is running tight after a couple of months of unemployment and the need for a job is starting to get urgent, but it seems like it's difficult to get recognized at NREL without knowing someone on the inside.


Does anyone have any tips or advice? (Or know someone at NREL you can hook me up with? )
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Old 04-30-2010, 10:42 PM
 
5,091 posts, read 13,169,575 times
Reputation: 6912
Quote:
Originally Posted by NewtoDenver97 View Post
I have been living in the Denver area for a couple of months now, and have applied for a lot of jobs at NREL. I have a PhD, so I would think I would qualify for many of them, but I am having a hard time getting my foot in the door, or even getting interviews. Money is running tight after a couple of months of unemployment and the need for a job is starting to get urgent, but it seems like it's difficult to get recognized at NREL without knowing someone on the inside.


Does anyone have any tips or advice? (Or know someone at NREL you can hook me up with? )
You could try one of the old well tuned methods. Find the bars where the employees congregate after work, or the restaurant they go for lunch. Is the facility open or restricted??? Does it have a cafeteria, or an early morning breakfast place. Strike up an innocent conversation and who knows--you may get lucky--I mean with a job.

You can find out where the employees go after work for sports, exercise, church etc.; just show up and make some friends.

Buy a bunch of organic, natural, free ranged snacks/beverages and deliver them to the department that has your interest with your resume attached--now, that certainly will attract interest--remember, people see with their stomach

Walk in front of the entrance in a solar powered, blinking sandwich board, wearing a wind powered electric propeller beanie and hand out your resume. Hey, you are a PhD--be creative.

If those great and whimsical ideas do not appeal to you, then find out how this agency does the work and the research. NREL would have to use subcontractors, vendors, suppliers and temp agencies/job shops; much of that information is easy to get--so go through the backdoor; talk to them or work for them and get a contact.

Livecontent

Last edited by livecontent; 04-30-2010 at 11:06 PM..
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Old 04-30-2010, 11:13 PM
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
84,981 posts, read 98,832,039 times
Reputation: 31396
DH tried to get in with them when they were SERI. He also has a PhD and was a partner in a solar energy company back in Illinois. He eventually gave up and got a job doing something else. I would suggest moving on.
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Old 05-01-2010, 11:09 AM
 
303 posts, read 1,386,433 times
Reputation: 178
Are you applying to federal positions via usajobs? If you aren't familiar with the federal hiring process, I'd recommend finding a book on it, or a short class, or similar. There are very specific ways to fill out the application or it won't make it through the initial HR steps. Some listed positions are really for a specific person, but they have to list on usajobs. Also, find out if there are other non-federal positions, some federal labs have high percentages of non-federal employees (contractors, university-related), and those jobs are not listed on the federal pages.

Or if there is a specific position that you are interested in, try to figure out the actual person(s) at NREL who are doing the hire (ie, not HR), and contact them directly.
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Old 05-01-2010, 12:54 PM
 
20,310 posts, read 37,804,669 times
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If the NREL folks know you personally from involvement with ASES or other related professional groups then you have some cred with them, else the feds are loathe to take on any unknowns, i.e., lots of advanced degrees out there, but if they know THE PERSON with the advanced degree it's a huge help. It's much the same everywhere, including private industry; you essentially have to be invited into the fold by having become a known quantity in the profession. I'm speaking as a retired 30-year Fed.
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Old 05-01-2010, 05:56 PM
 
1,384 posts, read 2,622,297 times
Reputation: 1683
Find a congressman connected with energy and contribute to his campaign.
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