Highlights from Chapter 2 in our forthcoming book.
Three Gen Z women rock amazing jobs: Morgan’s college co-op program matches her with advanced roles in civil engineering in Cincinnati, Ohio; Pilar helps women (mostly Latinx) with eating disorders discover the power of nutrition, and teaches yoga on the side, in Los Angeles, California; and Rachel trains new hospital employees in her orientation program in New York City, New York. We’re seeing that, across the U.S. and around the world, many Gen Zers have already secured jobs in their chosen fields, long before they earn a diploma.
Job: Civil Engineering Intern
Location: Cincinnati, Ohio, U.S.
Working as an engineer at age twenty-one, Morgan in Cincinnati, Ohio reflects that, “Because I am the first engineer that my family has seen, I have no one to really ask professional questions to.” She enrolled in her local university’s co-op program to gain access to relevant professional work while still an undergraduate—and she’s worked for Procter & Gamble, Marathon Petroleum, and The Kleinger’s Group (a small civil design firm).
Being a project manager has its ups and downs: “I love the project management aspect of my job, as it allows me to utilize my technical knowledge on a variety of topics along with interacting with contractors and building relationships with people,” she reports.
However, she notes, “My least favorite part of the job is probably the culture of the business, as everyone (including myself) is doing their best to climb the ranks, and although I am very competitive in nature, it gets tiring at times.”
Job: Dietetic Technician at an Eating Disorder Clinic
Location: Los Angeles, California, U.S.
“Unlike my parents’ jobs,” says Pilar, “My job requires a Bachelor’s (and soon Master’s) degree. The salary is higher and the benefits are better. My career is not physically laborious like theirs.” More than anything else, Pilar wishes to make an impact with her work; flexibility ranks second.
“Right now, I work as a Dietetic Technician at an Eating Disorder Treatment Center. I help individuals recover and re-mend their relationship with their food and their bodies.
I earn a little over minimum wage (I have to learn how to ask for a raise!). I also speak out against diet culture and create awareness of weight bias and ‘fatphobia.’ On the side, I am a yoga teacher. I deliver donation-based yoga classes in underserved communities (primarily Latinx) in hopes to help gain body and mind trust and allow them accessibility to modes of wellness.”
Job: Hospital employee orientation
Location: New York City, New York, U.S.
Rachel, who lives in New Jersey and works in New York City, does onboarding for employees at a major hospital, making around $50K/year.
“I essentially do all parts of the pre-employment process,” she explains, “from background check, scheduling physicals, credentialing, etc. up to an individual’s first day of work.
“What I love most is having the freedom to work independently with collaborative efforts here and there. It can be stressful at times since there’s so much to keep up with, but that keeps me on my toes.”
She’s the first in her family to earn both college and graduate degrees and expects to reach CEO level in her career.
Cover photograph used with permission from and gratitude for christina-wocintechchat-com-RMweULmCYxM from Unsplash. Interior images are also from Unsplash: woman at drafting table is by kiefer-likens-6JwvsEGpWOM-unsplash, woman teaching yoga is by bruce-mars-HHXdPG_eTIQ, and woman teaching at whiteboard is by javier-trueba-vFJNeWJAA2g.
This post comes to you as a portion of the book:
MY JOB Gen Z: Finding Your Place in a Fast-Changing World
(c) 2021 by Suzanne Skees and Sanam Yusuf
An open-source, narrative nonfiction book full of true stories of jobs along with best practices for how to make your dream-job come true.
Note from the authors:
Join us each Tuesday and Friday as we release highlights from our new book, that will be FREE to our community members.
Share with your friends and followers; it’s FREE, open-source, and available to everyone.
No one makes a penny on this book project, which is intended to inspire and empower Gen Zers to launch their careers and land their dream jobs. Suzanne and Sanam have volunteered their time, and we’ve chosen this platform to transmit our book so that YOU don’t have to pay for publication costs.
However, if you feel inspired to help someone in poverty to have access to dignified work, jump here to donate directly to the nonprofit job-creation program of your choice–all vetted and supported by Skees Family Foundation.
Thanks for being with us! We’re excited to share our book with you.
–Suzanne & Sanam