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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DR.JOB Q. & A: Train for Automotive Career

(Q.1) MY BROTHER GOT THE BRAINS, I got the looks (just kidding), so he went to college and I stayed home. Though I'm not a good student, I'm good at working on cars, trucks and anything that moves. My folks get frustrated with me, and I get frustrated with their bugging me all the time. What do I do with my life?

(ANS) SOUNDS AS THOUGH YOU'D BE a perfect candidate for WyoTech, a division of Corinthian Colleges, Inc., one of the largest post-secondary education companies in North America with five campuses throughout the country. It offers degree and diploma programs in fields of automotive, diesel, collision/refinishing, motorcycle and much more. It also offers advanced training in many other automotive related fields. See for details, and a campus near you. 


(Q.2) YOU WROTE THAT MEDIA MARKETING jobs are moving online, and corporations are looking for media/business majors to fill them. But what jobs really are open in this field? What are the opportunities?

(ANS) SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING DEFINITELY IS THE NEWEST trend. Corporations need people to manage their company's presence and image on the likes of Facebook, Twitter, and similar sites. No longer considered " IT nerds," these business media specialists get the status of traditional media jobs as well as hefty salaries that go with them. Polish those skills.  


(Q.3) i'M A GRAPHICS DESIGNER and have a full-time job, but I'm not sure about what to do when relatives ask me to do free-lance work on weekends. Should they be really FREE or should I get paid? One of my in-laws asked me to redesign his business Web site, and the job took about four hours. He was very satisfied when it was finished, and he asked what I charge an hour and I was too embarrassed to tell him. I said I wouldn't take money from him, but I'm not sure that was right. Was it? 

(A.3) IT WAS NOT. YOU'RE A PROFESSIONAL and deserve pay for your work--whether or not the employer is related. Next time, before you begin, tell the relative what you normally charge for that job. but you may add that since you're related you  will offer him a small discount. Remember that he would have to pay someone else to do the work. And he's free to do that.


(Q.4) I'VE BEEN INVITED TO A FAMILY WEDDING ACROSS the country and my wife and children also are excited about attending. The festivities will end Saturday evening so we would return Sunday morning. Unfortunately, I'm scheduled to give an important presentation the following day that can't be changed. I'm worried because lately all the airlines seems so undependable. and I'm afraid to trust any of them to get me back as scheduled. Does it seem wise to take that chance? My whole career doesn't depend upon this one performance, but I don't like missing any appointment.   Which do I choose?

(ANS) YOU CAN'T LIVE YOUR LIFE waiting for anticipated trouble, "crystal balling" about something that may never happen. You have no indication that the airline you choose will let you down. Assume correctly that you will have a wonderful trip, fly back on Sunday and give your talk the following day. In the event that you are SURPRISED by some kind of delay and are late for the talk, you can phone the client that morning, explain what is happening, and arrive late with an exciting tale to use as an anecdotal opener for that talk--and probably many others.

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