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Old 01-26-2017, 01:56 AM
 
186 posts, read 199,720 times
Reputation: 233

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Quote:
Originally Posted by historyguy42 View Post
Hi all, this is my first post so I apologize if I'm not following proper ettiquette or anything.

I am a 23 year old college student in KY, and recently got engaged to my girlfriend of 4 years. She is going to have a degree to become a Radiology Tech within the next few years, and I am about to complete my BA and move on to getting my Masters Degree in History so I can teach at the college level, or at private schools. We have lived our whole lives in the KY/WV area, and love it. We love the culture, the people, and the mountains most of all. But at the same time we feel like when we finish school we need to strike out on our own and make our own lives, and so we have been looking for places we think would match up eith our vakues and lifestyles.

We love hiking and camping, shooting, and would love to one day own our own land. We've done a lot of research and Montana is beautiful, and seems like a perfect fit. I understand the winters will be much harsher than we're used to, but I'm okay with that and am definitely willing to do the research needed to prepare for them.

I'm mostly curious about job opportunities, and if it is a good place to raise a family. I am not picky - I would honestly almost prefer working at a small community college rather than a major university, due to the constant political tensions. (Not trying to get political, just explaining that I would love to be able to actually teach my subject instead of having to mediate arguments in my classrooms all day). I know my fiancee can get a job most places due to it being a medical degree, so were more curious about the private school and community college systems in the state. Are there also any regions or towns in particular you'd recommend? We are homebodies, and definitely prefer the small town lifestyle (to give an example, we think Lexington KY is a little too fast paced for us!). We also would like to start a family once we establish ourselves-is Montana a good place for children?

Sorry for the long post, and I apologize for any spelling errors since I'm on my phone. Thanks for all the help, and hopefully I'll be living near some of you in a few years!
Gotta tell you bud, that it seems like you have many preconceived notions about Montana. First off, why in the world would people be arguing with you about history while you are teaching a class about it? As a graduate of our fine university system, never once has someone done anything remotely close to that. If that happens where you live, I understand why you are leaving. Now if you are trying to teach some sort of alternative history, you will in fact get called out, because Montanans are not fools.

Second of all, people really need to drop these "romantic" notions about Montana. This is one of the hardest places to make a living in the country. I suggest doing some research into "living wage + (city of your choice)" in Montana. I mean, you've got three types of people here. 90% are struggling to make a living, 5% own a business and are raking in the dough, and then 5% are so rich they can probably wipe their ass with $100 bills.

Your small community college wage will pay about $30k at most, and if your wife wants to live in a town where she can use her radiology tech degree, you're lookin at about $1500-$2000 in rents. Unless you want to live up in the hills, and commute 30 minutes - 2 hours during a blizzard to work. They shut the freeway (I-90) down where I live on the regular. How would you get to work then? Add to the the cost of childcare, which is around $15,000.

BUT - with that said, this is a fantastic place to raise a family, if you can hack it. Lots of issues in the state right now. You should head on over to whatever city's local newspaper's web page is, and start reading all about it. The main problem is the wages. You seem ok with the winters, as you say, but have you ever been here in the winter? It hit like -30 for over a week not long ago. Major damages all over the place, deisel trucks just don't even start at that temperature.

Are you aware of the price of land? Are you aware everyone wants a piece of Montana? When you do find a cheap piece of land, come back to these forums and ask us, so we can tell you why it's a bad deal.
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Old 04-19-2017, 04:51 PM
 
125 posts, read 144,249 times
Reputation: 343
Quote:
Originally Posted by historyguy42 View Post
Hi all, this is my first post so I apologize if I'm not following proper ettiquette or anything.

I am a 23 year old college student in KY, and recently got engaged to my girlfriend of 4 years. She is going to have a degree to become a Radiology Tech within the next few years, and I am about to complete my BA and move on to getting my Masters Degree in History so I can teach at the college level, or at private schools. We have lived our whole lives in the KY/WV area, and love it. We love the culture, the people, and the mountains most of all. But at the same time we feel like when we finish school we need to strike out on our own and make our own lives, and so we have been looking for places we think would match up eith our vakues and lifestyles.

We love hiking and camping, shooting, and would love to one day own our own land. We've done a lot of research and Montana is beautiful, and seems like a perfect fit. I understand the winters will be much harsher than we're used to, but I'm okay with that and am definitely willing to do the research needed to prepare for them.

I'm mostly curious about job opportunities, and if it is a good place to raise a family. I am not picky - I would honestly almost prefer working at a small community college rather than a major university, due to the constant political tensions. (Not trying to get political, just explaining that I would love to be able to actually teach my subject instead of having to mediate arguments in my classrooms all day). I know my fiancee can get a job most places due to it being a medical degree, so were more curious about the private school and community college systems in the state. Are there also any regions or towns in particular you'd recommend? We are homebodies, and definitely prefer the small town lifestyle (to give an example, we think Lexington KY is a little too fast paced for us!). We also would like to start a family once we establish ourselves-is Montana a good place for children?

Sorry for the long post, and I apologize for any spelling errors since I'm on my phone. Thanks for all the help, and hopefully I'll be living near some of you in a few years!

I know this post is a bit old but I couldn't help but throw my 2 cents in because I can relate to the OP. I grew up in Lexington, left and moved to ATL for college and got a BA in Classics, moved to Buffalo and got an MA in Museum Studies, then moved to New Mexico, back to Lexington, and then to Rapid City SD.

I'm now almost 40 and have a wife and two kids. My first bit of advice, which you're not going to like, is to not pursue an MA or PhD in History. For the vast majority of students its a waste of time and money. Realistically, the only teaching you'll be doing with a masters will be as an adjunct at the Community College level. And it's unlikely that you would even be able to get that job as there are plenty of people with PhD's looking for jobs. I had a good friend who had a PhD in archaeology from Vanderbilt. He applied for over 100 jobs before he even got an interview. It took 300 applications and two years before he finally got a job offer, in Akron, Ohio, which he took because it was his best option. I was extremely fortunate to get a job with the government that pays well. However, most of my classmates still work in fellowships or temp positions that last 1-2 years and pay 30 grand. You cannot support a family on that kind of money. I don't care how much passion you have, in the end a job becomes just a job. If you're going to take the time and expense to go to grad school find something that you enjoy that will still be useful in the economy 20 years from now. STEM or Medical fields are key.

My second piece of advice is to get out of Kentucky. Yes, the cost of living is incredibly low and Lexington and Louisville are much better than the rest of the state. But that said, almost anywhere in the country outside of the deep south or the rust belt is going to offer you better job opportunities and a much better quality of life. I moved back to Kentucky after having my first kid, thinking it would be a great place to raise a family. Well it wasn't all I'd built it up to be after being gone for over a decade. After a few years it was time to move west. If you've never lived outside of KY/WV, you owe it to yourself to see the world a bit.

I'd encourage you to pursue you're dream and live in Montana, it's one of the greatest states in the country. But come with some savings and a degree that will pays you a salary of at least 50-60k or you won't be able to make it very long.

Good luck with your journey...
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