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Rethinking my career path, or is it too late? Advice needed.

 
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TheErrantWilder
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 29, 2014 1:52 pm    Post subject: Rethinking my career path, or is it too late? Advice needed. Reply with quote

Hello all! I have a question about education and egyptology.

A little background so you know where I am coming from. I graduated from Uni in September 2014 with a degree in Animal Behaviour and Welfare. However I can't find a job in that feild and had no luck finding any job for that matter. So plan B! I started to think (as you do when bored out of your mind being unemployed) maybe I chose the wrong degree? At 16 it never occured to me to think about this career; its the one that is "what if".

So I started thinking; just get a degree in Egyptology then! Great! But then realised it took money not to mention MORE years. Not practical at all. So with no money to do another degree I put it in the back of my mind. No use moping over something that can't be right?

Then a chance to be trained for a museum career came up. I suddenly thought could I work in this job and work towards a degree? But I can't move city if I do get this traineeship. So I swiftly found an online diploma course in Egyptology. It seems to be the only one out there! But a diploma is not a degree and without a degree many jobs in that sector are unreachable. Extreamly so it seems from the little I know of this world. So is it worth doing?

My question for you is if I do get a place in this traineeship, what would I do with a diploma in Egyptology? Is it useless for anything but going on to further education? Can I even go on to further education with it? Would it be useful to work in a museum?

I know I can't plan too ahead, and whatever happens happens but I don't want to pass up any opportunities. However I lack knowledge of this world, and I hope one of you can help me. Is my "Plan B" possible? Thank you to those who try and help, its very much appreciated.
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neseret
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 29, 2014 2:25 pm    Post subject: Re: Rethinking my career path, or is it too late? Advice nee Reply with quote

TheErrantWilder wrote:
Hello all! I have a question about education and egyptology.<snip a bit>
Then a chance to be trained for a museum career came up. I suddenly thought could I work in this job and work towards a degree? But I can't move city if I do get this traineeship. So I swiftly found an online diploma course in Egyptology. It seems to be the only one out there! But a diploma is not a degree and without a degree many jobs in that sector are unreachable. Extreamly so it seems from the little I know of this world. So is it worth doing?

My question for you is if I do get a place in this traineeship, what would I do with a diploma in Egyptology? Is it useless for anything but going on to further education? Can I even go on to further education with it? Would it be useful to work in a museum?

I know I can't plan too ahead, and whatever happens happens but I don't want to pass up any opportunities. However I lack knowledge of this world, and I hope one of you can help me. Is my "Plan B" possible? Thank you to those who try and help, its very much appreciated.


First of all, you need to rethink your priorities: you seem to want a job more than further education. Is this the case? If so, then you need to think what skills you have (forget what your degree is in) than you can market to an employer. Are you good at research? Writing? Think of your skills in this manner and not in what your degree is in.

Secondly, I know of no way you can get even a "traineeship" in a museum without being a major in one of a museum's collections (Asian, American, Ancient, Classical, etc) OR a full degree in museology. They just don't happen to people with no experience: you have to have focused degrees to work in museums these days.

If you are simply interested in ancient Egypt, yes, you can pursue that diploma /certificate in Egyptology, but it will NOT get you any jobs in the field (by this I mean field work, academic, museum, etc.). Again you would have to get a more focused degree in Egyptology (through a PhD in most cases) to even think of getting a job in the field.

If you are into archaeology, you could purse a job that is both well-paying and would touch (slightly) upon your previous studies: criminal forensics, which require (at the least) the ability to determine animal from human remains, archaeological disciplines, and so on. As you are in the UK, I suggest looking at UCL's MSc course in Crime and Forensic Science.

This would mean, of course, more studies, but it is a 1 year course, you will likely have the ability to do internships locally, and so on. Your knowledge of animal behaviours would come into play, as you would know how animals could, for example, disturb crime scenes, determine animal marks, etc.

Anyway, you need to either think of your degree being put to use in a meaningful way (I can't see it being of much use by itself in Egyptology, FWIW), which will lead to more studies for focused career planning. OR start capitalising on what skills you have learned while at uni (not degree based) and can market to an employer right away. But you need to make your mind up which you will do now.
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Katherine Griffis-Greenberg

Doctoral Candidate
Oriental Institute
Oriental Studies
Doctoral Programme [Egyptology]
Oxford University
Oxford, United Kingdom
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TheErrantWilder
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 29, 2014 2:51 pm    Post subject: Re: Rethinking my career path, or is it too late? Advice nee Reply with quote

neseret wrote:


First of all, you need to rethink your priorities: you seem to want a job more than further education. Is this the case? If so, then you need to think what skills you have (forget what your degree is in) than you can market to an employer. Are you good at research? Writing? Think of your skills in this manner and not in what your degree is in.


Thank you! Yes a job would be better than further education of course. Don't worry I know exactly what my priorties are. Thing is this traineeship IS a job as well. I am trying to learn what I cans o I can make the right choice. There is no use in doing this traineeship or diploma if I can't use it and would be better focusing on animal behaviour and welfare.

neseret wrote:
Secondly, I know of no way you can get even a "traineeship" in a museum without being a major in one of a museum's collections (Asian, American, Ancient, Classical, etc) OR a full degree in museology. They just don't happen to people with no experience: you have to have focused degrees to work in museums these days.


This is interesting to me because (and this is an exact quote)
"You'll be equipped with the information you need to do a good job and the skills, knowledge and experience to pursue a career within the museum sector. No previous museum experience is required but we are looking for higher level education (A Levels or a degree), demonstrable interest in the museum sector and experience of working in a public-facing, customer service type role."

What do you think?

neseret wrote:
If you are simply interested in ancient Egypt, yes, you can pursue that diploma /certificate in Egyptology, but it will NOT get you any jobs in the field (by this I mean field work, academic, museum, etc.). Again you would have to get a more focused degree in Egyptology (through a PhD in most cases) to even think of getting a job in the field.

If you are into archaeology, you could purse a job that is both well-paying and would touch (slightly) upon your previous studies: criminal forensics, which require (at the least) the ability to determine animal from human remains, archaeological disciplines, and so on. As you are in the UK, I suggest looking at UCL's MSc course in Crime and Forensic Science.

This would mean, of course, more studies, but it is a 1 year course, you will likely have the ability to do internships locally, and so on. Your knowledge of animal behaviours would come into play, as you would know how animals could, for example, disturb crime scenes, determine animal marks, etc.


Of course! I never expected to get the diploma and suddenly get a job at a dig or something. But would they accept the diploma to get into a degree? Or would it be better to just to the degree right away if I were to actually do one. Also if I were to do a Masters I would do one in animal behaviour, but again money and the fact I can't move yet stops me.

neseret wrote:
Anyway, you need to either think of your degree being put to use in a meaningful way (I can't see it being of much use by itself in Egyptology, FWIW), which will lead to more studies for focused career planning. OR start capitalising on what skills you have learned while at uni (not degree based) and can market to an employer right away. But you need to make your mind up which you will do now.


Well this is fair enough, and I am not just focusing on one thing trust me. I am thinking about all my skills!

So to be clear, what your basically saying (ignoring what you said about transferable skills) is either get a degree in Egyptology as nothing will happen in that area without one and the diploma will not help at all on its own or focus on the degree you have and give up on Egyptology. Is this correct?
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neseret
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 07, 2015 4:20 pm    Post subject: Re: Rethinking my career path, or is it too late? Advice nee Reply with quote

TheErrantWilder wrote:
neseret wrote:

Secondly, I know of no way you can get even a "traineeship" in a museum without being a major in one of a museum's collections (Asian, American, Ancient, Classical, etc) OR a full degree in museology. They just don't happen to people with no experience: you have to have focused degrees to work in museums these days.


This is interesting to me because (and this is an exact quote)
"You'll be equipped with the information you need to do a good job and the skills, knowledge and experience to pursue a career within the museum sector. No previous museum experience is required but we are looking for higher level education (A Levels or a degree), demonstrable interest in the museum sector and experience of working in a public-facing, customer service type role."

What do you think?


This is the same requirements of a museum volunteer, and I promise you, the skills they are talking about is things like labelling, docenting, etc.

If it were me, I would go and get a degree in museology to get more directly into museum work. If you go into a museum with the skills a traineeship gives you, they will want you as a volunteer only.

TheErrantWilder wrote:
neseret wrote:
If you are simply interested in ancient Egypt, yes, you can pursue that diploma /certificate in Egyptology, but it will NOT get you any jobs in the field (by this I mean field work, academic, museum, etc.). Again you would have to get a more focused degree in Egyptology (through a PhD in most cases) to even think of getting a job in the field.

If you are into archaeology, you could purse a job that is both well-paying and would touch (slightly) upon your previous studies: criminal forensics, which require (at the least) the ability to determine animal from human remains, archaeological disciplines, and so on. As you are in the UK, I suggest looking at UCL's MSc course in Crime and Forensic Science.

This would mean, of course, more studies, but it is a 1 year course, you will likely have the ability to do internships locally, and so on. Your knowledge of animal behaviours would come into play, as you would know how animals could, for example, disturb crime scenes, determine animal marks, etc.


Of course! I never expected to get the diploma and suddenly get a job at a dig or something. But would they accept the diploma to get into a degree? Or would it be better to just to the degree right away if I were to actually do one. Also if I were to do a Masters I would do one in animal behaviour, but again money and the fact I can't move yet stops me.


The diploma will not mean much to a university beyond showing your interest in Egyptology. Language skills in French and/or German would be more impressive to entering an Egyptology programme at a UK university. The Theban Mapping Project outlines what skills are desirable for someone wanting to do an Egyptology degree.

TheErrantWilder wrote:
neseret wrote:
Anyway, you need to either think of your degree being put to use in a meaningful way (I can't see it being of much use by itself in Egyptology, FWIW), which will lead to more studies for focused career planning. OR start capitalising on what skills you have learned while at uni (not degree based) and can market to an employer right away. But you need to make your mind up which you will do now.


Well this is fair enough, and I am not just focusing on one thing trust me. I am thinking about all my skills!

So to be clear, what your basically saying (ignoring what you said about transferable skills) is either get a degree in Egyptology as nothing will happen in that area without one and the diploma will not help at all on its own or focus on the degree you have and give up on Egyptology. Is this correct?


Succinct, but basically, yes.

I did not start my MA in Egyptology until I had been teaching as a FE teacher in a variety of subjects (including Egyptology) at a university for many years. It was these skills that got me into that programme, but it was made VERY clear to me that NO university, museum, etc. would hire me as an Egyptologist until I got at the minimum an MA, or better, a Ph.D. Egyptology is a very specialised area, and basically it takes the highest degree possible to be taken seriously in the field.

HTH.
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Katherine Griffis-Greenberg

Doctoral Candidate
Oriental Institute
Oriental Studies
Doctoral Programme [Egyptology]
Oxford University
Oxford, United Kingdom
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Daughter_Of_SETI
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 28, 2015 11:48 pm    Post subject: Re: Rethinking my career path, or is it too late? Advice nee Reply with quote

TheErrantWilder wrote:
Of course! I never expected to get the diploma and suddenly get a job at a dig or something. But would they accept the diploma to get into a degree? Or would it be better to just to the degree right away if I were to actually do one. Also if I were to do a Masters I would do one in animal behaviour, but again money and the fact I can't move yet stops me.

Hi! If you do a diploma online with Manchester University, they regularly offer voluntary placements in Egypt on dig sites. And I do know of someone that volunteers in museums without any Egyptology-themed qualifications, so it's always a possibility. All universities won't automatically accept Egyptology diploma graduates into their degree courses, but I know Manchester and Liverpool have in the past.
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evarelap
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 29, 2015 5:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Another bit of advice: knowledge is not power. Francis Bacon was wrong. Money is power. So do look for the option that in the long run will let you accumulate wealth.
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