I am very pleased to announce that the end-game for my Master’s Thesis is finally in sight; I know precisely what I am doing, I know precisely how to do it, I have finally developed a healthy relationship with my supervisor and God-Willing, I should have finished all of the work by the beginning of November. But as I close-in on the conclusion, it occurs to me that I have very little idea what I plan to do afterwards.
I’ve not yet decided whether or not I want to get a PhD; it does seem like a worthy goal at some point, but frankly I would like a chance to take a breather from all of my academic pursuits and perhaps even get a chance to make a little bit of money (something which has been in painfully short supply for me of late, but I shall refrain from complaining in the grounds that the overwhelming majority of people reading this are probably in similar–or worse–straits).
You see, ever since I left high school, I have devoted myself so thoroughly to my studies that I have scarcely had a break from them in seven years. I have been working as a researcher on various different projects more or less constantly since 2009 (and sporadically since 2007); I’ve been making money on the side as a tutor since 2007; I have been TAing various courses since I got out of first year.* When it comes to finding jobs in the “real world,” I have absolutely no experience at all beyond submitting applications for teenage-style unskilled labour positions. So while I realize that, in principle, there are probably quite a few decently-paying positions for someone of my particular skillset**, I actually have disturbingly little idea how to go about looking for them. And, as I will need to do so soon, the prospect of figuring this out strikes me as more than a little daunting.
*I got my BSc at an exclusively undergraduate university, which apparently suffered a shortage of people wanting to mark math tests. Suffice it so say, I know first-year calculus really, really well at this point.
**My grandpa points-out that when I phrase it this way, it makes me sound like a prostitute.