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Old 02-26-2013, 02:22 PM
 
Location: Chattanooga, TN
52 posts, read 64,850 times
Reputation: 32

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Good Day all.

As a life-long resident (25 years) of Southeast Georgia who is considering relocating to Portland, I likely have more questions than those on this forum have time to answer.

... But, I'll work to keep it brief - I am, after all, learning plenty by reading through multiple posts.

---------

I have targeted several cities as possible destinations (the list includes everything from San Francisco and Seattle on the left coast, to Chattanooga, Greenville, Atlanta or Savannah on the East... Places a little closer to home) but Portland seems to provide the ideal opportunity.

In Portland, I would find a unique, vibrant and beautiful city; and one that satisfies my desire of living in a much more populated place (Statesboro has a humble population of about 28,000 [20,000 GSU students included). Just as important, I would find myself in a stunningly beautiful natural environment that provides access to the many outdoor recreation activities I enjoy.
OH... and I wouldn't be mired in a place that is EXTREMELY socially conservative and very religious.

The opportunity to move to Portland is attractive, in part, because I would have two friends also making the move... it would satisfy my need to try something new... and, I assume, all of the things I enjoy so much here (playing sports [baseball, specifically], outdoor recreation, and arts/music events) would also be available there.

-----

My question (and I guess this turned out no-so-brief) pertains to the economy and a lack of jobs I continue to read about...

I've heard about SAD, and the constantly grey skies (admittedly, something I would not look forward to) but the biggest concern is whether I would find work.

Is it really so difficult to gain employment in Portland?? I stumbled upon recent statistics that show unemployment rates for metro areas, and Portland landed near the national average (Unemployment Rates for Metropolitan Areas).

**For sake of comparison**

Seattle metro - 6.7

Chattanooga, TN-GA: 7.2

San Francisco-Oakland-Fremont, CA: 7.3

Asheville, NC: 7.5

Portland-Vancouver-Hillsboro: 7.5 (Does Vancouver make this number look way better?)

Savannah, GA: 8.2

Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Marietta, GA: 8.4

Charlotte-Gastonia-Rock Hill, NC-SC: 9.4

----


For what it is worth: I have a B.S. in Journalism and currently (and have for a few years) worked in news, as a writer.

Any writing-related jobs would be feasible (Public Relations, Marketing, etc..), and a wildlife/environmentally-focused opportunity would be ideal (whether that is in communications/marketing, community outreach, or something more hands-on).


I know that was a lot, and if you hung-on 'til the end, I appreciate it.
I look forward to, and happily accept, any information you all may provide.
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Old 02-26-2013, 02:40 PM
 
9,965 posts, read 16,351,672 times
Reputation: 9193
Quote:
Originally Posted by barefoot_always View Post
Portland-Vancouver-Hillsboro: 7.5 (Does Vancouver make this number look way better?)
No, actually Vancouver and Clark County would make that number look worse. There's a higher unemployment rate up there than in Multnomah County. Washington County has better employment numbers and more jobs these days.

High unemployment rate continues to plague Clark County | OregonLive.com

Declining unemployment among trends noted at Washington County economic update | OregonLive.com
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Old 02-26-2013, 02:53 PM
 
Location: Chattanooga, TN
52 posts, read 64,850 times
Reputation: 32
That's interesting. Thanks Deezus.

---

In virtually every discussion I've read through, folks are slamming the economy and saying it's difficult to find work (of course, that is the case nationally and some of these posts date back a year or more).
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Old 02-26-2013, 03:13 PM
 
9,965 posts, read 16,351,672 times
Reputation: 9193
Quote:
Originally Posted by barefoot_always View Post
That's interesting. Thanks Deezus.

---

In virtually every discussion I've read through, folks are slamming the economy and saying it's difficult to find work (of course, that is the case nationally and some of these posts date back a year or more).
Well it is, but it depends what your skillset is.

And not to discourage you, but I have a BS in Journalism as well and after a couple years in freelance writing and working part-time in temp jobs or landscaping on the side I ended up just going in another direction. Taught myself database programming and other skills, and I've been employed ever since--when I got laid off last spring, I had another job within a month.

Journalism is a tough racket in this town(the papers are constantly cutting staff), but if you're looking for marketing or public relations there's more work availlable--but you're going to have to extremely pro-active. Networking is key--even if you have an amazing portfolio and experience you're going to have a good amount of competition for even lower paying jobs in those fields. I know people who ended up working at Wieden and Kennedy or Nike as ad-copy writers, but they really had some connections or got internships to get their foot in the door. There's people who find other avenues, via working freelance, but you really have to have a personal connection to whose hiring or just be amazing and lucky enough to get an interview. There's a lot of English or Journalism majors who come to this town out of college and end up working in completely different directions.
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Old 02-26-2013, 03:18 PM
 
Location: Pacific NW
6,413 posts, read 11,418,496 times
Reputation: 5844
But isn't that more the state of newspapers world-wide, given that they are a dying breed?

To the OP. I think that it's possible to find a job ... it's probably just not possible to find the job you want.

Portland does have what you're looking for. Plenty of outdoor activities. And as you say, natural beauty abounds. And it even looks good under cloudy skies.
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Old 02-26-2013, 03:23 PM
 
9,965 posts, read 16,351,672 times
Reputation: 9193
Quote:
Originally Posted by EnricoV View Post
But isn't that more the state of newspapers world-wide, given that they are a dying breed?
Yes, it is true everywhere. I was just sort of relating it to people I've known who worked in journalism in Portland who made a go at making it their career.
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Old 02-26-2013, 03:25 PM
 
Location: Chattanooga, TN
52 posts, read 64,850 times
Reputation: 32
Newspapers are absolutely a dying breed.

Which is fine with me, as I've no interest in staying that course... But with the writing experience, I figured a move into PR or Marketing wouldn't be impossible.

Being such a wilderness, I thought the Pacific Northwest might have a few Wildlife or Environmental Conservation Organizations.
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Old 02-26-2013, 06:14 PM
 
Location: Pacific NW
6,413 posts, read 11,418,496 times
Reputation: 5844
Quote:
Originally Posted by barefoot_always View Post
Being such a wilderness, I thought the Pacific Northwest might have a few Wildlife or Environmental Conservation Organizations.
Are you saying it doesn't? 'Cause it does. Lots. Not sure how many would have actual, paid, jobs.Most are volunteer. Especially as the economy has hurt non-profits a lot.
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Old 02-26-2013, 07:05 PM
 
Location: Chattanooga, TN
52 posts, read 64,850 times
Reputation: 32
I wasn't saying that it does or does not. Perhaps I meant to include a question mark at the end...

I meant it as: This is the impression I am under.

---

But yeah.. You run into the same problem here. Outside of Communications departments at Zoos and Aquariums, I'm not sure there are many writing jobs in that area.
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Old 02-27-2013, 10:56 AM
 
Location: the Beaver State
6,466 posts, read 12,692,366 times
Reputation: 3555
The unemployment rate in Portland specifically is a bit skewed, because it leaves out a lot of the underemployed people. There is a large population of 20 to very early 30's people with degrees in all fields who are working part time at Coffee Shops or as waitresses/cooks. Granted, it seems like many have "worthless" liberal arts degrees. But a lot of them are also chasing a dream - coding all night long for a new product that they hope will take the market by storm. Building up a great portfolio of art. Bloggers, writers, photographers all plying their trade part time.

Jobs come up, but they are so over saturated with resumes that you really need to know someone to get a job. Everybody seems to get a job these days because they were told of an opening by a friend. It doesn't seem like any other city in the US is quite as bad as Portland for this.
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