Who's Your City?, by Richard Florida
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Archive for the ‘Lincoln’ Category

Unemployed & Uncertain

Wednesday, June 10th, 2009

I am a frustrated 27 year old white male. Why? I am a single Certified Public Accountant who cannot find work within an hour of where I live one would expect for CPA.

First career. I live in a small town in central Illinois, near 5 small metros. I passed the CPA Exam last November. I have been overqualified for each position I have had since May 2004. I lasted 5 months in that position. It was a state government position & lost it because the management felt I was too introverted to represent the agency. On May 6, I lost my job. It was scheduled to be a two-month temporary position reconciling invoice payment postings to bank deposits, but lasted 11 months. The company had decided to make it a full-time position. I believe the reason they did not hire me full-time was due to the fact that when I was first asked about my career goals I spoke of long term goals, such as starting my own accounting firm or some other way to make my career path more like a typical CPA. This position did not request a college degree, paid /hour, & reached the point of being so easy it’s boring months ago. I found out I lost my job by phone call on commute home from work. I now find myself unemployed & looking for a new position. I am on the verge of giving of hope of having a typical CPA career path in central Illinois. I have used Google & contacted the AICPA trying to find where CPAs are most in demand without a satisfactory answer.

Second personal. I feel rooted. I do not want to leave the area, but also feel career interests may force me out. I prefer smaller cities, such as the 5 metros in central Illinois. Since leaving college, I have lived in two other cities, each time failing to become part of an urban tribe. The failure to join an urban tribe twice, combined with success joining not-so-urban tribes in my hometown may be the primary force behind why I feel rooted. Childhood friends are the linchpin of my associations in my not-so-urban tribes. Also, I am unwillingly single. The singles map gives me a hesitation about moving to Peoria & Champaign, Illinois, I didn’t previously have, though still optimistic about Springfield, Illinois. It does make me optimistic about St. Louis except the job postings appear no scant in St. Louis. A move to St. Louis would be 130 miles from home, enough to leave me seeing far less of my not-so-urban tribe & my mother. I have been to Chicago several times & do not like it. Chicago has a certain blandness to me, crowded, and awful traffic & congestion.

Right now, most of my thoughts of leaving central Illinois focus on St. Louis for its proximity to central Illinois, cost of living, & mating market and Washington, DC for its low unemployment rates, much higher level of job postings for accountants, & mating market, even though I don’t know if I can tolerate a city with such terrible traffic & congestion. I am still interested in finding alternatives.

Any thoughts or advice would be appreciated.

Sent by Ken from Lincoln, Illinois