Ask Dr. Job’s chief contributor, Sandra Pesmen, is a member of the Chicago Journalism Hall of Fame and author of “DR. JOB’s Complete Career Guide.”

Winner of several journalism awards, Pesmen is a graduate of the University of Illinois Media College at Urbana, and is listed in several Who’s Who editions. She also has been Corporate Features Editor of Crain Communications Inc., founding Features Editor of Crain’s Chicago Business and a reporter/features writer for The Chicago Daily News.

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Is Service Substitute for Jobs?

Q.I have a degree in fine arts but couldn't find a job. I met a wonderful man online and after dating a few months, we married and he decided to join the military because he can't find a job either. Now, after a discouraging year when we were both out of work, we're looking forward to a really adventurous future. My husband goes to boot camp in a month, and I will follow him. The recruiters told us he will spend a year in the states being trained for computer programming and then probably will be stationed here somewhere on a base. I plan to get a job teaching on a base. Even though I have no degree in education or even a teaching certificate, the recruiter told me there are many jobs of that kind available to spouses. My parents are trying to discourage us by saying we're only looking at the optimistic side of joining the service. We also hope to end up in Germany or Japan, where we will be safe and together, and my husband will earn a high salary with an overseas bonus. Many of our friends are joining the military after college, as we are, because they can't find jobs either. Is there a way to convince our parents to see it from our point of view?

Ans. Parents will be parents, and when their children join the military they are forced to consider the negative side of the picture as well. And that is that while everything the recruiter said may be true, the overseas bonuses are given because risk and danger definitely are possible. Whether or not your dreams of happy adventures come true, your husband is performing a noble, patriotic act by fighting for his country. We all salute him, thank him, wish him well, and pray for his safety.

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