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Old 10-21-2016, 05:12 AM
 
Location: Ponte Vedra, Florida
8 posts, read 4,528 times
Reputation: 24

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Hello city-data forum members!

I have been utilizing this website's resources for quite a while now attempting to determine where exactly or, at least whereabouts, I should focus my attention for the job hunt and search for rental listings when I complete my bachelor's degree. Considering this is only a few months away, I really need to get some things figured out pretty soon. So I am asking for any helpful tips, advice, suggestions, recommendations, critiques, or anything else that may be of benefit to me as I venture out into the world. First, I will give some background information about myself, then I will detail my expectations and desires from any new city. If you need any additional information to help, please just let me know.

About me:

I am a 22 year old white, heterosexual male from St. Johns County, Florida. I have lived all of my memorable life in this county, although I spent my early childhood in Jacksonville. For those who don't know St. Johns County, it is one of, if not the, wealthiest counties in Florida, is overwhelmingly white, suburban, and Republican. My family's class background is working class, yet people seem to think I am personally upper middle class (so I suppose I'd fit somewhere in the middle in terms of interests, mannerisms, etc.) I am irreligious (but highly intolerant of obnoxious Atheists, New age types, and religious people - keep your faith or lack thereof to yourself), politically liberal (but not the stereotypical Starbucks, yoga, Whole Foods kind), pretty introverted and generally prefer being left alone (INTP personality according to MBTI), finishing a BA in Sociology, and my career field is Insurance Sales.

Location Preferences:

Climate - I strongly dislike hot, humid summers (if I can't open my window at night and get a reasonably cool breeze, no thanks). I would love to have a solid four seasons climate, but would be willing to compromise with a not-so-cold winter in exchange for a mild summer. Rain and snow don't bother me, nor do clouds and fog.
Crime - I come from a non-gated community where I sleep with my window open and people leave their garage doors open at night. I'd like to keep it at least somewhat like that.
Demographics - I'm happy to live alongside any ethnic, racial, or religious group, so long as they're polite and keep to themselves.
Vibe - I'd prefer more of an educated, college town vibe (the less pretentious the better, though). But I plan to live in the suburbs, rather than inside the city. So nice suburbs are a must.
Activities - Art galleries, movies, bars, water sports, hiking, camping, and the theater are all important.
Economy - Strong job market for Insurance Sales Agents with the best combination of good pay with reasonable cost of living (ideally I'd spend no more than 35% of my income on rent for a small 1 or 2 bedroom condo, townhome, or small house)..

Last edited by lastamongus; 10-21-2016 at 05:30 AM..
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Old 10-21-2016, 05:18 AM
 
1,652 posts, read 792,481 times
Reputation: 1640
Trust me on this, don't be picky right now. Put applications out nationwide and move to wherever you get an offer.
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Old 10-21-2016, 05:24 AM
 
56,637 posts, read 80,930,134 times
Reputation: 12509
Given the career field, perhaps look into the Hartford CT area.
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Old 10-21-2016, 05:29 AM
 
Location: Ponte Vedra, Florida
8 posts, read 4,528 times
Reputation: 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by ShiverMeTimber View Post
Trust me on this, don't be picky right now. Put applications out nationwide and move to wherever you get an offer.
I'm not being picky like that. My goal isn't a list of only a handful of cities and end it at that. But I'd hate to relocate somewhere, waste all my savings, and end up regretting that decision. So I do believe I should be a little picky on this. Do you have any suggestions for where to look?
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Old 10-21-2016, 05:33 AM
 
Location: Ponte Vedra, Florida
8 posts, read 4,528 times
Reputation: 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by ckhthankgod View Post
Given the career field, perhaps look into the Hartford CT area.
Thank you! Hartford is one of the cities I have really been considering since I know its reputation as the insurance capital and the job market statistics from the BLS's OOH looks very promising.
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Old 10-21-2016, 05:49 AM
 
1,652 posts, read 792,481 times
Reputation: 1640
Quote:
Originally Posted by lastamongus View Post
I'm not being picky like that. My goal isn't a list of only a handful of cities and end it at that. But I'd hate to relocate somewhere, waste all my savings, and end up regretting that decision. So I do believe I should be a little picky on this. Do you have any suggestions for where to look?
I'm not trying to be a negative nancy. I graduated with a BS in psychology myself and previously worked in insurance sales and service for 3 years post college. The job market is abysmal in most of the desirable places. I put in 100 applications and the only job i got was a 25k insurance sales gig. I burned out fast. On one side of me was a guy with a ged. On the other side a woman with a masters. The real world is tough and I've personally watched an engineering grad work tossing pizzas for a year post college because nobody would hire him. He was devistated. Now he works a manual labor job that doesn't require a degree.

So my point is that when you graduate, you think wow I can finally get a great job wherever i want. It's incredibly tough because every company wants 2-3 years experience now for entry level positions. Instead of looking for a dream town then trying to find a job there, I would put out apps for lots of areas even places like the midwest where people don't really want to move to. Get a few years experience in your desired field under your belt, then you can explore where you might want to move to.

This is friendly advice, I don't have to be typing this all up on my phone. But I want to help because it's been somewhat of a struggle for me and looking back, I should have cared less about where I wanted to live and more about getting invested in a career wherever that may start. A lot of people will tell you that sociology is a useless degree. If your goal is to work in insurance, I don't think that's a bad major. My particular insurance company I was working for however required a business degree to advance into management. Employers these day can be very picky because there are literally hundreds of not thousands of people applying for each and every job posting in desirable areas. I really wish you the best of luck, and hope you don't experience the let down that I and many of my friends did.
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Old 10-21-2016, 05:58 AM
 
Location: Ponte Vedra, Florida
8 posts, read 4,528 times
Reputation: 24
ShiverMeTimber,

I've seen plenty of people in my life graduate with degrees, even with lots of experience as well, and still be unable to land a decent job. It's undeniably tough - especially if you don't have the right connections. Which is why I'm not really wanting to target the desirable cities like New York, Boston, Denver, Portland, etc... They're overpriced and the competition is fierce since they're heavily saturated with college grads desperate for employment, so the employers can be picky. I have no objections to the metros of places like Cleveland, St. Louis, Sioux Falls, or even Anchorage. I'd much prefer a good job, a nice home, and some disposable income over living in a "trendy" place.

Also, thank you for your concern. I appreciate your well thought-out reply and especially for saying that Sociology isn't simply some useless degree. I take pride in my chosen major.
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Old 10-21-2016, 05:54 PM
 
Location: Cbus
1,721 posts, read 1,403,138 times
Reputation: 2089
Quote:
Originally Posted by lastamongus View Post
Hello city-data forum members!

I have been utilizing this website's resources for quite a while now attempting to determine where exactly or, at least whereabouts, I should focus my attention for the job hunt and search for rental listings when I complete my bachelor's degree. Considering this is only a few months away, I really need to get some things figured out pretty soon. So I am asking for any helpful tips, advice, suggestions, recommendations, critiques, or anything else that may be of benefit to me as I venture out into the world. First, I will give some background information about myself, then I will detail my expectations and desires from any new city. If you need any additional information to help, please just let me know.

About me:

I am a 22 year old white, heterosexual male from St. Johns County, Florida. I have lived all of my memorable life in this county, although I spent my early childhood in Jacksonville. For those who don't know St. Johns County, it is one of, if not the, wealthiest counties in Florida, is overwhelmingly white, suburban, and Republican. My family's class background is working class, yet people seem to think I am personally upper middle class (so I suppose I'd fit somewhere in the middle in terms of interests, mannerisms, etc.) I am irreligious (but highly intolerant of obnoxious Atheists, New age types, and religious people - keep your faith or lack thereof to yourself), politically liberal (but not the stereotypical Starbucks, yoga, Whole Foods kind), pretty introverted and generally prefer being left alone (INTP personality according to MBTI), finishing a BA in Sociology, and my career field is Insurance Sales.

Location Preferences:

Climate - I strongly dislike hot, humid summers (if I can't open my window at night and get a reasonably cool breeze, no thanks). I would love to have a solid four seasons climate, but would be willing to compromise with a not-so-cold winter in exchange for a mild summer. Rain and snow don't bother me, nor do clouds and fog.
Crime - I come from a non-gated community where I sleep with my window open and people leave their garage doors open at night. I'd like to keep it at least somewhat like that.
Demographics - I'm happy to live alongside any ethnic, racial, or religious group, so long as they're polite and keep to themselves.
Vibe - I'd prefer more of an educated, college town vibe (the less pretentious the better, though). But I plan to live in the suburbs, rather than inside the city. So nice suburbs are a must.
Activities - Art galleries, movies, bars, water sports, hiking, camping, and the theater are all important.
Economy - Strong job market for Insurance Sales Agents with the best combination of good pay with reasonable cost of living (ideally I'd spend no more than 35% of my income on rent for a small 1 or 2 bedroom condo, townhome, or small house)..
Columbus (OH) meets some of your desires perfectly. Nationwide insurance is headquartered downtown and we have a generally robust economy with a ton of young professionals. Columbus is educated and OSU has a strong presence but it is a laid back Big Ten town, most people are quite friendly.

We have all of the activities you listed and our metro is pretty affordable for college graduates. Columbus has quite a few desirable suburbs to choose from, Grandview Heights is very popular with young professionals. Crime is basically a non-issue in the suburbs here besides a few rough patches i.e. Whitehall

Besides Columbus I would check out Minneapolis, Dallas or Charlotte.
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Old 10-21-2016, 08:18 PM
 
1,652 posts, read 792,481 times
Reputation: 1640
Quote:
Originally Posted by lastamongus View Post
ShiverMeTimber,

I've seen plenty of people in my life graduate with degrees, even with lots of experience as well, and still be unable to land a decent job. It's undeniably tough - especially if you don't have the right connections. Which is why I'm not really wanting to target the desirable cities like New York, Boston, Denver, Portland, etc... They're overpriced and the competition is fierce since they're heavily saturated with college grads desperate for employment, so the employers can be picky. I have no objections to the metros of places like Cleveland, St. Louis, Sioux Falls, or even Anchorage. I'd much prefer a good job, a nice home, and some disposable income over living in a "trendy" place.

Also, thank you for your concern. I appreciate your well thought-out reply and especially for saying that Sociology isn't simply some useless degree. I take pride in my chosen major.
Fair enough, seems you are headed in the right direction. best of luck to you brother!
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Old 10-21-2016, 09:03 PM
 
Location: Ponte Vedra, Florida
8 posts, read 4,528 times
Reputation: 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Buckeye614 View Post
Columbus (OH) meets some of your desires perfectly. Nationwide insurance is headquartered downtown and we have a generally robust economy with a ton of young professionals. Columbus is educated and OSU has a strong presence but it is a laid back Big Ten town, most people are quite friendly.

We have all of the activities you listed and our metro is pretty affordable for college graduates. Columbus has quite a few desirable suburbs to choose from, Grandview Heights is very popular with young professionals. Crime is basically a non-issue in the suburbs here besides a few rough patches i.e. Whitehall

Besides Columbus I would check out Minneapolis, Dallas or Charlotte.
Columbus is definitely one of the cities I have noticed would be a pretty good fit for me. What about other cities in Ohio? Or even Pittsburgh? I always got the sense that Ohio's other large cities are pretty grungy and crime ridden (which I admit could likely be a misconception). Minneapolis is another city I have looked at, but I do worry if the prolonged extreme cold might prove too much for this Florida native. The seasons in Pennsylvania, where I visit often, are just about perfect to me. Charlotte and Dallas would be lower on my list, likely options of last resort, because of the summers.
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