I'm a bit worried about the future. That's not because I'm afraid of finishing my education, but of the things that might come after that. The last few months I've been scanning job advertisements to figure out what I want to do after I graduate from university. Untill now not one job description seemed right to me. What is going on in the Netherlands?
Well, first of all we are in 'recession', or so we tell eachother. So the first thing for profit organisations do is cut down all overhead costs. Being a communicational specialist, especially focused on internal organisations, you don't stand a change: you cost too much so your being fired. Secondly, communication seems to be equivalent to marketing. Oh, I do hate that! When I'm graduated I'm not trained to design brochures and posters. Sure, there are students who like doing that. But communication is so much more than marketing. Just think of any organisation, everything depends on communication.
Thirdly, there is the lack of appreciation for academic scholars in the field of communication. In the Netherlands there is a level just below university, called HBO, which is more like vocational training. HBO-training is more geared to practice (learning the 'tricks') and you end up with a bachelors diploma at the most. University is (supposed to be) learning you how to think for yourself. This difference between the two types of education is enormous seen from an academic point of view, yet most people think HBO is very similar to university. Therefore organisations ask for HBO-level skills at minimum for jobs, but almost never academic level skills only. Organisitions still don't realize that they don't really need someone to design their brochure (there are other organizations that specialize in that), but do need somebody who can view the communication within the organisation from a broader perspective. For instance someone who can understand the financial situation of an organisation and translate that to other (problem)areas.
Finally, there are too much women around in the communication field. That results in a lot of parttime jobs being offered for low salary. Come on, I don't have kids yet! When I'm fresh from university I want to work, fulltime. Maybe lots of overtime if I enjoy my job. And I want to get payed enough, because I have to pay of my debts after years of education. A friend of mine, who also did communication studies, told me last week that I should just try and accept that this is the situation for our workfield. But I don't want to do that! I have a vision on how certain things should be and that doesn't include me being underrated as a communication specialist. The past few years I've been learning to go of the beaten path and I'm not willing to go back on it again. That would mean that all the energy I invested was for nothing. I can only hope that by the time I finish my masters thesis the world has drastically changed.
I've added the 'about me' section
It is very short but it gives just enough information for anyone who comes across my weblog. I thought it would be a bit too much to add a CV or something, because mine is not that interesting at the moment. By the way, thanks for the reactions on my first entry. My webstats show that more people come across my weblog than before. Thanks Ton for your advertisement!
A new kid on the block
Last sunday a new princess was born in The Netherlands, the first daugther of our crown prince Willem-Alexander and his wife princess Máxima. For the Dutch it has been a time of speculation about the name of the baby. Yesterday it was known that the first two names probably would be Catharina-Amalia. How did people know that? The internetdomain www.catharina-amalia.nl had been claimed. Today the crown prince registered his daughter at the Registry Office in The Hague in front of the press. One of the reporters asked him why they chose to register the domain before the official anouncement of the names of the princess. His reaction was that they tried to claim several domains so that there would still be speculation left. Unfortunately most names they wanted to claim as a diversion were already claimed in the last few days. That shows that there are people out there trying to make money out of everything. Unfortunately for them they didn't come up with the real name:
Catharina-Amalia Beatrix Carmen Victoria.
Ready for lift off
This is my first blogentry I write in English. I'd better get used to it, because in the next months I'm hoping to build a new network around my blog. Since februari this year I have been writing in Dutch, but I noticed I hardly got any response on the things I wrote. Initially I wrote for myself mainly, just to order my thoughts. But now I'm facing the beginning of my masters thesis and I'm going to investigate the phenomenon of weblogging. Since there is little scientific publications on weblogging I have to find other ways of getting enough input for my thesis. And that's why I'm starting an English weblog. To try and get input from bloggers themselves!
What my thesis is going to be about? I haven't got my research questions formulated yet, but I do know one part is to describe the weblog as a communicationtool and compare the weblog to other types of communicationtools used on the internet, such as chatboxes, fora etc. The other part of my thesis will consist of a philosophical investigation of the weblog. A Dutch philosopher (Jos de Mul) has written about personal homepages as a tool in the construction of personal identity in the postmodern world. That's a very interesting subject. An other thing that I noticed about blogging is that the communicational culture amongst them has some resemblance with the ideal speech idea of Habermas. In short that is: respect for the opinions of the other, no differences in power between the persons joining the conversation and transparancy. It is worthwhile to investigate whether my ideas about this are true in some way.
These are the subjects I'm going to write about in the next months. For everyone who wants to know more about me: I will create an 'about me' section in the next few days.