I have a pretty good job (geographer), at a pretty cool place (The U.S. Census Bureau), but something is missing. Maybe it's the need for a little bit more money, maybe it's the need, the drive to improve myself professionally.
The worst part of my job is that I feel like I am quickly making myself irrelevant. Really, just how marketable is a subject-matter expert on the intricacies of Puerto Rican addressing systems? Is this even geography? The answers to both questions are, "Not Very" and "No." Even these two issues aren't really issues at all, but since my employer refuses to pay for even nominal training on professional advancement (say, Project Management courses), I feel very much like I am a cog in an overly-complicated machine.
I work as a GS-12, but I do the work of a GS-13 here at the Census Bureau. For those of you who don't know, a GS-12 is essentially the highest rank a Federal employee can be before hitting the supervisory GS-13 levels. I have managed projects, I have appealed for (and gotten) higher budgets, I will be over-seeing a team to evaluate commercial off-the-shelf software: all highly visible tasks (Upper Management has noticed).
Yet, they don't even throw me a Project Management bone. I could sure use that Project Management certificate/degree. Oh, wait...that makes me more marketable elsewhere in the Geography Division, or elsewhere period.
So, long story short: a GS-13 position has opened up and I have been writing like crazy, trying to get my knowledge skill-sets all written before the close of business on Monday.
Wish me luck.
Shit. I wish myself luck. I'll need it.
Tryin' to get ahead, tryin', tryin',
Tryin' to get ahead in this race called life . . .
Oh, hell. I'd rather relax, but relaxin' ain't gonna pay the bills, son.