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Old 07-31-2007, 02:29 PM
 
8 posts, read 23,903 times
Reputation: 10

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Are there any???

Hi folks...my wife and I are considering a move from Houston, TX to Iowa City. She's a health care researcher and has some good opportunities there. I, on the other hand, am just a high school graduate blue collar guy who has spent his whole life working in the oil/chemical industry here in Houston, primarily in shipping/receiving/warehouse/distribution type environments, and I spent some time as a truck driver.

My question is, what kind of well paying jobs are available for me? I am open to a career change, but I realize that without a college education, I am limited. I am in my late 30's and don't mind getting dirty and working hard, but not for minimum wage.

BTW...I am also a massage therapist on the side, but I am not licensed in Iowa. I would however be willing to consider doing that full time, but my perception is that it's not very profitable in a small town...and that college students aren't the usual clientele (not enough money and not yet enough stress and muscle aches).

Also, as to the bicycling, I am a huge fan of bicycle commuting. Part of the appeal of moving to a smaller town is to be able to go as many places as I can without using a car. I don't mind walking, but I'd rather cycle. Here in Houston, bike lanes are nonexistent. The attitude here is basically, ride at your own risk. I would love to live in a community where not only do bicycles have more access, but the drivers are more aware and courteous to the cyclist...unlike Houston where they think you are potential roadkill.
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Old 07-31-2007, 02:44 PM
 
3,376 posts, read 12,235,105 times
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Tons of students ride bikes to and from campus. However...just keep in mind the cold snowy weather that exists for a lot of the year. I wouldn't want to be cruising town on a bike in months of 10 degree weather

Iowa City is very urban, liberal, upscale, etc. Once you leave IC though, it becomes very rural, very quickly. I would imagine there is a fair amount of blue-collar jobs in the area related to farming, trucking, farming equipment, etc.

Double check on the massage thing. I agree, college students aren't your best bet, however it wouldn't hurt keeping your license in case you could get some work in that area, even if it's just part time.
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Old 07-31-2007, 05:54 PM
 
282 posts, read 947,371 times
Reputation: 95
Quote:
Originally Posted by Buddhabean View Post
Are there any???

Hi folks...my wife and I are considering a move from Houston, TX to Iowa City. She's a health care researcher and has some good opportunities there. I, on the other hand, am just a high school graduate blue collar guy who has spent his whole life working in the oil/chemical industry here in Houston, primarily in shipping/receiving/warehouse/distribution type environments, and I spent some time as a truck driver.

My question is, what kind of well paying jobs are available for me? I am open to a career change, but I realize that without a college education, I am limited. I am in my late 30's and don't mind getting dirty and working hard, but not for minimum wage.

BTW...I am also a massage therapist on the side, but I am not licensed in Iowa. I would however be willing to consider doing that full time, but my perception is that it's not very profitable in a small town...and that college students aren't the usual clientele (not enough money and not yet enough stress and muscle aches).

Also, as to the bicycling, I am a huge fan of bicycle commuting. Part of the appeal of moving to a smaller town is to be able to go as many places as I can without using a car. I don't mind walking, but I'd rather cycle. Here in Houston, bike lanes are nonexistent. The attitude here is basically, ride at your own risk. I would love to live in a community where not only do bicycles have more access, but the drivers are more aware and courteous to the cyclist...unlike Houston where they think you are potential roadkill.
What kind of health care research does your wife do? (that's my profession also -- I just left the University of Iowa to move out of state for my husband's job).

As for your job situation, if I were you I would focus on getting hired by University of Iowa if possible. Great jobs, FABULOUS benefits. Lots of opportunities for people with your background and skillset. If you can get in there you will do great.

Bicycling: as the previous post mentioned, lots of people bicycle in Iowa City. It's a bicycle-friendly town that way. As a non-bicyclist, I can tell you that more often than not I get annoyed by bicyclists in Iowa City who refuse to obey traffic laws but yell loudly about wanting equal rights as automobiles. I sure don't have any problems treating bicycles with the same respect as cars, but in my experience (25 years living in Iowa City) the vast majority of bicyclists obey traffic lights/laws when it's convenient for them only. I can't count the number of bicyclists who have run red lights, made illegal turns, etc. because they think they "can".

So they have yet to earn my respect.
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Old 07-31-2007, 10:42 PM
 
8 posts, read 23,903 times
Reputation: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by ic-epi View Post
What kind of health care research does your wife do? (that's my profession also -- I just left the University of Iowa to move out of state for my husband's job).

She could tell you better than I could, but basically it's community based health care disparities research....I think.

As for cycists who act like they own the road, I know how you feel. A cyclist, I notice everytime I see someone riding and not obeying the traffic laws, or riding unpredictably. It gives the rest of us a bad name. That being said, I love bicycles...I love to ride...and I like to be around others who feel the same.

Are there very many bike lanes or bike specific trails in Iowa City???
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Old 08-01-2007, 09:52 AM
 
Location: Chariton, Iowa
681 posts, read 2,809,214 times
Reputation: 446
Welcome to Iowa City!

It sounds to me that with your background you shouldn't have a problem getting a job in the area. UI would be a great place to work, and I've heard good things about ACT and the City of IC as well.

We are a pretty bike-friendly town for the most part. There are, unfortunately, some drivers who don't understand bike lanes and right-of-way...and some bikers with the same issues. Most of the time, the two seem to co-exist peacefully.

IC does a very good job of making sure bike lanes and/or wide sidewalks are part of all the new roads they build. The UI also does a good job of having bike access to all of it's major hotspots--including UIHC. Some older parts of town are less bike-friendly....but I would imagine them to still be better than Houston.

Here is the address of a trail map from the city...(I can't make it link for some reason). Hope it helps!

http://www.jccog.org/documents/trailsmapltr.pdf (broken link)
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