So...my horrible week snowballed into one of the worst weeks of my entire life.
I did not survive my newspaper's latest round of layoffs.
I found out the news yesterday morning.
It had nothing to do with the twitter incident; upper management simply realized they could hire six interns to fill my position. These journalism students will do my job for school credit. I guess you can't compete with free labor, right?
My last day is at the end of the month.
I'm completely stunned. I barely made above minimum wage, so I'm not sure what the newspaper is going to gain by letting me go.
Plus, I have never been in this position before.
I have never had to job hunt. I have never had to fill out a job application. I have never written a cover letter before in my entire life. I have never had a job interview. All these things mystify me and now I have less than two weeks to familiarize myself with them.
You see, I was given my reporting job upon college graduation four years ago. I had interned at the newspaper in college and they basically saved a job for me until I graduated.
But now...now I am officially in the real world. I am a daughter of the recession. Unemployed, young, and not quite sure what I'm going to do with my life now.
There are no other journalism opportunities in my city, and I kind of want to stay here for at least another year. I want to find a job that will pay the rent until I attend grad school in the fall of 2011.
So...what else could I do? With my four years of reporting experience, I could do public relations. I could dip my feet into marketing. I could be a technical writer (yawn). I'm not sure what else I could do that would make use of my skills and college degree...I just don't know. I write and report and interview people and investigate stories and that is simply all I know how to do it seems.
I have been a newspaper reporter since elementary school and I knew since I was seven that is what I was going to do. I was a reporter for every school newspaper since then. I studied it in college and was an editor at my university newspaper. I recieved a very prestigious journalism scholarship in college, which caught the attention of my now-former employer. They snagged me right after graduation.
Journalism has been my life.
Where do I go now?
I'm scared and confused and sad and feel lost.
It honestly doesn't seem real yet.
On Friday, I have to sign a bunch of legal papers at the office, sign up for unemployment, sign up for independent health insurance, and job search.
I don't know where I'm going from here...