10. The Personal Toll on Bright, Capable, Well-Educated US Citizens, young & old: A collection of testimonials.


updated: 2013-12-06

2012-12-18: Hamilton Nolan _Gawker_
Unemployment Stories volume 20 Hello from the under-class

2012-09-07: Ania Monaco _IEEE Institute_
do lay-offs target older workers? "Crash54" wrote: "Graduate degree in EE, Summa Cum Laude from undergraduate institution, 58 years old and now changing oil and tires at an auto shop for 1/5th what I used to make.   I've got a job, but it feels like such a waste."

2012-08-02: Candice Reed _San Diego CA Reader_: Old dog? New tricks.: "For the last 8 months, Jan Browning, 54 of San Diego, searched the Internet, networked diligently, and used all the social networking tools available to find a job.   After 347 applications and 45 interviews she finally landed a well-paying gig as a program director for a health-care organization...   Jan's son Devon, 30, is still looking for a job as an engineer and has been for 2 years...   Those 55+ who were seeking work were jobless an average of 55.6 weeks -- down slightly from May."

2012-04-10: "I had an interview today and they told me that they have to have people working in India because they could not compete with hiring the amount of people in this country.   The COO who is an engineer said for the most part the work they get from Indian is poor but there are a few who have improved a lot over the years.   They say they have no choice but to hire this cheap labor and I guess hope for the best and fix up what you have to.   It is too bad quality is not important these days.   It is the only thing we can compete on.   We cannot live in this country getting 3rd world wages even though that is what they want us to take."

2012-03-02
Tom Tancredo _World Net Daily_
Obummer turns his back on millions of American workers
"As Steve Camarota of the Center for Immigration Studies notes, according to the government's own [BLS] numbers there are 101K American [STEM professionals] who are looking for [STEM] jobs, 244K who have left the labor market and 1.47M who left the [STEM] fields.   That's 1.8M Americans with [STEM] degrees who do not have [STEM] jobs."

2011-08-16: Carolyn Tyler: KGO San Francisco CA: Leftist unemployed share their stories with radical leftist congress-critters

2011-06-08: Eliane Quijano: CBS: A long struggle for the long-term unemployed featuring TA, a 37 year old pharmaceutical chemist, unemployed for over 2 years.

2010-11-17: Tracy Mayor: ComputerWorld: H-1B: The voices behind the visa

2010 May: "[In Spain] 28 year old PhD candidate Jesus Fernandez said many of the engineering students he taught during the academic year had left when they finished their under-graduate studies.   There were no more jobs in the construction industry that had once absorbed them, he said, and government cut-backs meant less funding for post-graduate studies.   'I can think of 2 [former students] in NY, 1 in London, 2 in Germany, and others in South America', Fernandez said.   His friend Sandra Rueda, a 24 year old geological engineering student with long dread-locks, was despondent.   She reflected on the contrast between the unbridled optimism of the generation that came of age around the time of Franco's death in 1976 and the pessimism that pervades hers.   'In 1976, the poor had absolutely nothing, but at the same time, they had everything.   They had hope.   They had the future ahead of them.', she said.   'Now we have everything but we don't have a reson to believe in the future.   I hope my children can get work in the future.   I hope so.   But I don't know.'" --- Michael J. Casey 2012 _The UnFair Trade: How Our Broken Global Financial System Destroys the Middle Class_ pg306

2010 March: 1993 master's from U of Colorado... sys admin... thousands laid off from Ill-Begotten Monstrosities as it staffs up over-seas.   The work "is just being done by a group over in India now".

2010-02-17: "corporations bring in people on H-1B visas to take our jobs because they're cheaper than the well-educated Americans who are here and ready to work.   I've managed these folks -- Indian, Chinese and Russian -- at companies, and know exactly what they make compared to comparably educated U.S. citizens.   A few years ago I was having difficulty getting work in the computer industry.   I knew an industry-leading company in San Jose was hiring, but no matter how many times I applied I kept getting an automated response telling me I wasn't qualified.   Finally, I took the job description, cut and pasted the exact verbiage into my résumé template and sent it back.   A day later I was told, sorry, your job experience doesn't meet the requirements!   A week later the company CEO asked an additional 40K H-1B visas be authorized by Congress, because sadly, 'no Americans are qualified for these positions'.   True.   That is, no Americans with one or more college degrees willing to work 60 hours per week with no benefits for 60% to 70% of the industry standard pay."

2009-12-24: "I graduated with a Computer Science degree in 2000.   My GPA was 3.6, and I still haven't landed a job in IT, and I owe about $75,000 on my student loans which I can't pay on because I'm unemployed, and I couldn't pay on my student loans even when I was employed because I was underemployed and didn't make very much money.   When I was employed, I was doing low level clerical worker as a temporary associate.   I remember one  assignment with a well know bank.   I was making $12.50 per hour, and I noticed that most of the IT Department was filled with people from India.   There are a lot of other college computer science graduates who are in the same position as I'm in.   This isn't helping the economy.   We need to get good jobs before we can start paying back our student loans.   What will happen when the student loan companies go bankrupt because we can't repay our student loan?   This is another bubble in the making, and our economy can't handle another economic bubble especially right now."

2009-10-14: SS, BSCS, 25 years of experience.   "Replaced by an H-1b at Merck-Medco who had fewer skills and less knowledge."   Committed suicide as a result of severe depressive disorder after being displaced by guest-workers. "Not only did the H-1B program take his life but it has taken the lives of his family."

2009-07-05: MH, a laid-off automotive engineer, took CAD/CAM/CAE training, finishing 2008 May. &nbp; Got automotive engineering work unrelated to the training.   Was laid off, again, 2008 October.   "He has since sent out as many as 15 resumes a day but has had no interviews."   With help from governor's office, got approval for additional training, an 18 month civil engineering course.   NY Times
Gainesville FL Sun
Henderson NC Times-News/Blue Ridge Now
Gadsden AL Times
Ocala FL Business Journal
Sarasota FL Herald-Tribune

2009-05-27 12:07 FB to Portia wrote in the Wall Street Journal: "I don't fault the OP either -- I just see some posters saying, 'Kids these days have it so easy -- if I took the test again with the advantage of a calculator I would get a perfect score!' or some such nonsense.   I appreciate the OP's insight on how it was different for her as an adult, and how it made her more empathetic to her children.
The same thing happened to my mom when she had to look for work this past year after a lay-off.   Though she had graduated in the early 80s, she didn't really understand my frustration until she went through it now.   Searching for work in 2008 really changed her opinion of my experiences.   (These are her words, not my opinion.)
On that note, Sunday marked my two-year college graduation anniversary, and Tuesday marked my first day as a permanent, benefitted employee!   It took 2 years and 2 days, but it finally happened!" Wall Street Journal

2009-02-27: "I'm a professional software engineer.   I have a Master's Degree in Computer Science from xxxxx University and over 25 years experience in the field.   I have been unemployed now for about four months.   I was outraged a couple days ago when I found out that my bank, JPMorgan Chase, was one of the largest employers of foreign IT workers in the U.S. (236 visas approved in 2007 - see http://www.businessweek.com/table/08/0305_h1b.htm for the top 200 U.S. employers of H1B visas).   As you probably know, JPMorgan Chase has received and will receive billions of dollars from our federal government through the Toxic Asset Relief Program (TARP), so it's possible that JPMorgan Chase will use some of that money to hire more foreigners. IBM has been one of the biggest outsourcers of American IT jobs in the U.S.   I heard recently on NPR that now IBM is offering to help American citizens relocate to India, Brazil, and other countries in order to gain employment as programmers making a quarter of the salary they had in the U.S.   Now it's rumored that IBM is gunning for stimulus contracts.   I don't think any bailout or stimulus money should be given to a U.S. business or government that employs foreign workers or outsources our jobs to foreign countries.   Thousands of foreigners are using student visas as a way to circumvent H1B and L1 caps established by our government.   They come here and then get sponsored by U.S. companies and even city and state governments.   That isn't right.   If a foreigner comes here on a student visa, they should be required to return to their country after graduating and not take jobs away from Americans!   I think the U.S. should suspend all temporary (e.g., H1B and L1) visas.   This would instantly create about one million high-paying, high tech jobs for Americans.   Temporary visa programs are disloyal and injurious to American workers."   discussion entry

2009-02-26: "An employee must maintain a minimum of 44 BILLABLE hours a week.   Previously provided training, sick time, vacation, holidays, breaks, etc. ARE NOT billable, therefore must be accomplished on your own time.   Oh yeah, if you are the bottom with 50+ billable hours, you are still a 3 performer and ripe for the guillotine.   She works 60-plus hours a week, 12 to 14 hours a day, taking the daylight hours of Sunday off.   Often she works overnight for the unappreciative SOBs.   If she didn't work from home I would be convinced she was having an affair."   InfoWorld

2009-02-26: "I was laid off from East Fishkill IBM after 28 years of excellent service! Two kids, 18 and 13.   One going to college.   I was an equipment maintenance tech.   We get our medical benefits from my wife, who is a teaching assistant.   She may be losing her job because of N.Y. State budgets problems...which it looks like will happen even though Obama's package went through.   At that point, I cannot pick up IBM transition benefits because I didn't already have them."   InfoWorld

2009-02-26: "We have been given nothing in writing regarding the relocation, not even the name of a Realtor.   We are being asked to give a year commitment to Boulder [CO], but IBM will give us no commitment that we have a job for 1 month or 3 months or 6 months or anything.   There is even question on salary being lowered because there are job postings for the Boulder positions at a much lower [salary] band level than the current folks being asked to move."   InfoWorld

2009-02-19: "Computer Software Engineer... That's me! Unemployed 3.25 years with B.S..."   Dice

2009-02-18: "How about 6 months with a PhD (hard science) plus 2 MS degrees (one of them in EE) and without any job?   And BTW this was back in 1997-1998"   Dice

2009-01-23: "I used to make $90K per year in the computer industry (after 25 years of steady employment).   Now I work for $9 an hour, temp, part-time.   That's all I can get with two bachelors degrees and 25 years of experience.   With all the H1B workers coming over and working for cheaper labor rates, my career is over."   Redmond magazine

2008-12-30: "Recently I graduated from the Network Engineering program at Trios College in Ontario, Canada in September of 2008.   It's a shame that I spent $18,000 on this college program that should have guaranteed me instant employment in a very high demanding industry, yet I can't even find even a basic entry level position to start a new career."   Dice

2008-09-25: "I graduated from the Universty of Missouri in May of this year, with Bachelor's Degrees in CS and IT (took me 5 years)...   And now here I am, 4 months/200 or so apps in.   I'm trying to find a job in the Chicago area, or here in St. Louis as a backup.   I've had one phone interview...   It's like I'm not even being considered, and I have no idea why."   Dice2008-03-18: "I graduated with a B.S. in Computer Science from New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT) back in January 2005.   After I graduated, I was unable to find a job... so in order to pay bills and student loans, I had to get a temp job doing customer service, making $12 an hour"   Dice

2008-06-20: "I have been looking for a full time job for about a year since I graduated from my college with a B.E. in computer engineering...   As of right now, I have MCSA, MCTS:Vista Config, CCNA, Network+, and A+."   Dice

"I let my now ex-wife talk me into going to UoP for my BS in IT (circa 2002/2004).   What a waste.   $20k of debt and the degree is virtually worthless.   Dumbest thing I've ever done!"   Tech Toil

2008-09-11: "Not been able to find anything in the IT/ICT field since my graduation from Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (BS) in 2002."   Dice

2008-04-13: "I have bachelors degree in computer science.   I have 10yrs of experience in software and 5yrs in .net.   But now i have been laid of and out of job for past 4 months."   Dice

2008-09-29: "The problem I'm having is that no matter how many jobs I apply for, and no matter how well-written my applications are, I can't seem to get further than the first interview.   For some reason it seems a lot of employers will completely overlook my degree in computer engineering..." &nbps; SlashDot 2008-07-09: "He's a pretty sharp kid, just graduated from a small liberal-arts school that has a computing program.   He just got a job in Chicago, $12/hr, no benefits..."   Dice

2008-11-21: "I will graduate in 3 weeks with a AS degree in networking, and a MCP certified.   I have been have trouble finding any kind of IT jobs.   First of all, there aren't many entry level IT jobs here in Florida, if there are, even helpdesk positions require minimum of 2 years of IT experience.   I have been studying full time in at school. a straight A student.   The only thing keep me moving on is working experience.   I tried internship but apparently its not long enough to qualified for 'minimum of 2 years' of experience. but you have to get started somewhere!"   Dice

2008-03-19: "I finished my Associates degree in IT back in [2007] December and I still haven't found employment in the IT field."   Dice

2008-03-20: "Soooo.   I graduate May of [2007], with a 3.3 and a BSIT but no experience in IT Security...   And I am $#*7 out of luck"   Dice

2008-01-03: "I am a cliche.   I am 24 year old, B.Sc. Computer Science grad from an above average state school, and I'm unemployed.   I have exceptional math skills (750 math SAT) and a large interest in technology."   Dice

2008-04-02: "I graduated with a B.S in Computer Science last year May 2007.   Though after applying to hundreds of places I've only gotten a handful of interviews and no IT job as of yet! All my other friends who majored in business or accounting managed to get jobs fairly easily."   Dice

"My wife graduated from a small university in the midwest with a BS in Accounting last December.   Because of the work life balance (we have 3 and 4 year olds) she wanted to find a job in the Federal Government instead of private sector.   While the school isnt highly recommended when HR at the DoD saw a 4.0 transcript the phone rang.   She ended up with at least 4 job offers on the table before selecting the one she liked best.   Because of superior acedemic achievement she will start out GS-9 step 3 with automatic promotions every year until GS-12."   Dice2008-04-03: "In 2004, took the school Valedictorian of my college class -- 1 year to find a job in IT."   Dice

From the video: "We really have a difficult time in the Boston area hiring... especially in our engineering groups."
From their web site: "48HourPrint.com has no current openings.   You may forward your cover letter and resume to careers@... or fax 617.268.3172 for future consideration."

This from someone with a bachelor's in Management Science from MIT's Sloan School:
"Recently, I put my name in for a position that I was very qualified for at the CTO level.   This was after spending hours filling out an extensive questionaire about everything about me, my approach to the position, etc.
 
I got a simple note back saying that there were over 100 applicants for the job, and they were only looking at 10.   Thanks for nothing.
 
The next week, they put out another similar position -- same extensive questionairre with additional custom position questions.   I passed.   Who needs this...
 
Last night, I was at a meeting of local Technology Executives, and there was a guy there that is a certified Scrum Master.   But he's in his 50s.   He's worked on some very successful projects, but can't even get a decent interview because he is over 50.   He talked to his Brother-In-Law that is in HR, and he told him to get the dates off of his resume, and list no jobs before the 1990s..."   [According to some sources age discrimination is now becoming apparent when STEM workers reach the age of 35.]
 
Another wrote: "I was replaced by an H-1B-holder at a large health insurance firm. It was very subtle.   The manager brought in an Indian friend and started to harass me for no reason."
---

Examiner:   "I have worked in Information Technology for 37 years.   I have spent about $15,000. trying to keep my skills up to date.   I have a BS degree in Computer Technology from Purdue University.   So many IT jobs are being sent off-shore I would not recommend anyone in the US go into IT software.
 
For every person here on a H1-B visa it is taking jobs away from an American.
 
The next step after using H1-B teachers will be out sourcing teacher jobs to India or China thru the internet.
 
It is no wonder our economy is in bad shape. Why should people go into any engineering area when they can't get a job that pays well enough to pay back there college jobs.
 
When these companies complain about not being able to find enough people, they should also say they are willing to pay up to $3,000./yr."
---

* "I have worked in IT for 37 years.   I can honestly say that I would no longer recommend that younger people just thinking about going to college consider any IT path that can be sent to India.
 
For the past 10 years I have taken college courses on newer technology such as Java, VB, Oracle, SQL server, etc.  I have received a certificate in Database Systems from the University of Santa Cruz San Jose extension.   Regardless of all the companies in Silicon Valley complaining that they aren't able to find enough people, I have not been able to find work were I am able to put this new technology to work...
 
I just got laid off from HSBC bank.   When I started working there 7 years ago about 25% of the staff was from India.   Now the IT area is about 75% fron India.   They are laying off older workers (higher paid) and replacing them with people from India.   For every Indian contractor working here on site they have 10 or 20 people working for them in India."
---

* "These companies are actually looking for people who don't qualify.   Here is what happened to me.   A contract company wanted to send me to Litton industries for a government track interview using Visual Basic.   I told the company I didn't know Visual Basic and thus was not qualified for the job.   The contracting company insisted, so I went to the interview.   Two people who worked for an Indian contracting company interviewed me.   We were in a room for 1 hour and I was never asked anything about Visual Basic or any of my IT experience.   At the time I thought that this was really weird.   The next day I was called by the contracting company and told I was asking for too much money.   I never discussed a rate with anyone.   It was only later that I figured out Litton and this Indian contracting company was only interview me to claim qualified people could not be found.   Don't fall for this from these so-called global companies."

JP was driven from NCR by worsening working conditions, disgusted at how IT workers are being teated [Ron Hira & Anil Hira 2005 _Out-Sourcing America_ pg135]

SK of Wilmington, DE, lost his job twice to off-shore out-sourcing [Ron Hira & Anil Hira 2005 _Out-Sourcing America_ pg134]

AA and 10 colleagues at Thomson were dumped, their jobs out-sourced to Accenture/Andersen Consulting and off-shored to the Philippines [Ron Hira & Anil Hira 2005 _Out-Sourcing America_ pg133 citing Ted Evanoff 2004-08-30 _Indianapolis IN Star_ 'Off-Shoring Trend Costs Thomson Jobs: 11 at Carmel IN HQ Seeing Work Sent to Philippines']

JH of Mountain View, CA, a former computer systems operator filed for bankruptcy and no ekes out a living selling jewelry at a shopping mall. [Ron Hira & Anil Hira 2005 _Out-Sourcing America_ pg133 citing Suein Hwang 2004-08-06 _Wall Street Journal_ 'New Group Swells Bankruptcy Court: The Middle-Aged Job Losses -- Illneses Can Push White Collar Over the Edge']

LP of Plano, TX, lost her computer programming job in 2002 November, to Canada, doing temporary part-time administative work sinc then, and the bank where her husband work is out-sourcing. [Ron Hira & Anil Hira 2005 _Out-Sourcing America_ pp132-133 citing Katherine Yung 2004-06-25 _Dallas TX Morning News_ 'Job Security Hopes Fading']

VK from Orlando, FL, was dumped in the early 1980s from his job delivering steel, got training in computer science, and was dumped again when the work was off-shored in 2002 and has been unable to get good work since. [Ron Hira & Anil Hira 2005 _Out-Sourcing America_ pg132 citing Jyoti Thottam, Karen Tumulty & Sara Rajan 2004-03-01 _Time_ 'Is Your Job Going Abroad?']

JE from Oakland, CA, referring to being coerced to train a foreign replacement said 'My value as a human being was taken away from me.' [Ron Hira & Anil Hira 2005 _Out-Sourcing America_ pg130 citing Katherine Yung 2004-06-26 _Dallas TX Morning News_ 'Job Security Hopes Fading']

JP, a small business owner wanted to find some senior programmers, knowing that programmers with the kind of knowledge and experience he wanted earn $80K in the costly Boston, MA area.   Someone offered to have the work done in India for $40K per programmer, including the extra costs of coordination, communication, and brokering the deal.   JP placed a job ad in a Boston paper, offering $45K -- less than the average starting pay for new college grads -- and was flooded with resumes from high-quality US applicants. [Ron Hira & Anil Hira 2005 _Out-Sourcing America_ pg128 citing Marilyn Geewax 2003-10-21 _Atlanta GA Journal Constitution_ 'Pay Cuts May Reverse Tech Job Loss, Expert Says', David E. Gumpert 2003-12-04 _BusinessWeek_ 'US Programmers at Over-Seas Salaries', Lisa Vaas 2004-01-13 _eWeek_ 'Off-Shoring Eats Away at IT Pay, Study Shows', 2004-07-30 _CNN_/_Money_ 'Back to Wok for Less: Survey: 57% Who Lost Full-Time Jobs 2001-2003 and Found Full-Time Work Again Are Earning Less']

PL, a recent UCLA grad, thinks he wasted his time studying computer science and is headed to Japan to teach English because of a poor job market. [Ron Hira & Anil Hira 2005 _Out-Sourcing America_ pg111 citing Alex Pham 2004-07-20 _Los Angeles CA Times_ 'Tech Bust Zaps Interest in Computer Careers']

NH, a Stanford grad and former software engineer at Palm testified to the US House Small Business Committee 2003-10-20 on being coerced to train replacements in India [Ron Hira & Anil Hira 2005 _Out-Sourcing America_ pg134]

Another wrote: "I have strong experience with both SAP and Oracle ERP systems.   When I worked for CSC in an SAP shop (Aerospace / Defense), CSC decided to move 100% of SAP development from Connecticut to India.   I stayed on for a year, as a Middleware Support person with the SAP Production Support group.   After that year, I was part of a corporate-wide layoff at CSC (February 2003).   CSC advertised ZERO SAP or Oracle openings in the USA on it's Web site.   At the same time, there were numerous openings at CSC offices in India for SAP and Oracle developers.   I have been unemployed for the last 6 months.   I am still seeking a new Oracle ERP position."

A person in Connecticut wrote: "I went to a job fair in Connecticut recently.   I got a big sales pitch from New Horizons Computer Learning Center.   They said that with M$ certification, I could make $67,000 per year.   That's less than my salary 5 years ago!   Why would I want to spend thousands of dollars to get a job with less pay?"

JF, a software developer, was denied Trade Adjustment Assistance, because the relevant part of DoL doesn't consider software to be a product. [Ron Hira & Anil Hira 2005 _Out-Sourcing America_ pg110 citing Peter Loftus 2003-08-29 _Dow Jones_ 'Laid-Off Tech Workers Denied Gov't Job Training Benefits', and Bent Hunsberger 2004-03-21 _The Oregonian_ 'Dead Ends in a Down-Turn: Federal Efforts to Prepare Laid-Off Workers for New Careers Help Only a Fraction']

GM got a second MBA after his engineering job at HP was exported to Singapore in 2001, but hasn't been able to find work. [Ron Hira & Anil Hira 2005 _Out-Sourcing America_ pg110 citing Peter Loftus 2003-08-29 _Dow Jones_ 'Laid-Off Tech Workers Denied Gov't Job Training Benefits', and Bent Hunsberger 2004-03-21 _The Oregonian_ 'Dead Ends in a Down-Turn: Federal Efforts to Prepare Laid-Off Workers for New Careers Help Only a Fraction']

Former software developer in a western state wrote: "I used to work as a software developer 1992-97 and I have a BS in computer science.   I've been out of the field since 1997.   Seriously, I haven't gotten a job since 1997.   I currently work outside of tech.
 
It makes me very angry what is happening.
 
-- By outsourcing jobs the companies are impoverishing the very markets they are trying to do more business in.   You can't remove wealth from a market and then expect to do more business in that market.
 
-- If you deny employment to American engineers because they don't have the experience they are never going to get the experience.
 
-- All a company has to do is hire a sharp American programmer and he/she can start to be productive in a new technology in a matter of weeks.
 
-- Whatever happened to the corporate training program?
 
-- When big corporations lobby congress for a certain cause, it's not for the common good.
 
-- The government needs to stop pandering to the demands of the corporations and let the free market take its course.
 
Is it even possible to get back in to a programming job at the age of 39? Is education even worth pursuing any more??"
---

Programmers Guild discussion ""It's a quandary for us," said Emitte Scruggs, director of staffing for Northrop's Integrated Systems sector.   "Even when we do find someone, they can't get the clearance.   I know it sounds odd, but we're having a tough time hiring."
 
What they mean by "they can't get the clearance" is "they don't already have the clearance -- and we won't sponsor them".
 
When I was laid-off from General Dynamics in 2001, I had an active ssbi/top-secret clearance.   I applied to Northrop Grumman several times.   I was easily qualified for the jobs I applied for, but I never got a response.   Same for Raytheon.   After two years, my clearance expired and went to waste.
 
I don't know what kind these companies play.   They will advertise hundreds of jobs on dice, and churn the same job ads every day for months.   They ignore qualified applicants, then b!tch about not being able to find anybody."
---

These from Norm Matloff's 1999 testimony to congress:
From a man in Tennessee: "Based on personal experience, I'd say you are right in your summary of the true state of the IT job market: Nobody wants to pay serious money except for a handful of super-hot areas like Year2000 or fixing some M$ problems.   I've got an MSEE from Caltech, six years at NASA, and six years running a PC business, and I quit to get one of those ''hot jobs'' that was supposed to be plentiful.   Big mistake!!!   At least I've found nothing meaningful in the Nashville area."
 
From a man in the San Francisco Bay Area: "I have programmed since 1976, but lost ''hot skills momentum'' during 1991–1995, during which time I worked as an applications specialist for a local oil company.   I was replaced by a much younger worker.   Since then I have been studying networks, Visual BASIC, and other newer languages, but can't obtain so much as an interview offer.   I now earn about $24,000 per year in retail sales and management."
 
From a woman in Seattle: "Your statements about ''middle age'' programmers are right on target.   I am 41, and had been out of the industry for five years [running my own business]. Upon my deciding to go back into software engineering, I [could only get offers for non-programming positions]...   This after 15 years experience in software QA, as well as 5 years running my own business...   I was fortunate enough to eventually find my current employer, and they were willing to take a chance and offer me a job based on REAL experience and intelligence... [but] as long as employers think that I'm out of date because I was studying computer science before they were born, I guess it will be hard to do anything based on my background.
 
From a man in New York City: "With over 10 years of experience in programming, I've been out of work and looking for over a year and a half with absolutely no luck...   A friend suggested to me that looking in California for a Java job would be better, so I faxed my résumé to a recruiter two weeks ago. I spoke with the recruiter in San Francisco this afternoon, and she told me that my experience in other languages was worthless... and also that in my present circumstances (unemployed) that I was ''out of the field''...   She mentioned to me another person, with 10 years experience in the [software engineering] field whom she was helping, [but] who could not get a Java job because he had no paid experience in Java.   I asked her if there was any age-discrimination in California (in the software field), and she indignantly replied ''no.''   She also suggested that I look in New York because the companies out there [in San Francisco] wouldn't want to interview me (i.e. bring me such a ''long distance'').   I replied that they didn't seem to mind bringing people from China, which was an even greater distance."
 
From a 47-year-old man in the San Francisco Bay Area: "I believe I have highly transferable skills in several key areas of strong demand and intensive growth in Silicon Valley, but in 15 months of essentially full-time searching have really only gotten two formal interviews...   Emphasizing modest salary requirements and an eagerness to accept 'entry level' positions has proven entirely futile, as have all offers to submit to some form of testing to prove my competence...   I claim competence in C++, perl, Unix, Windows95, etc., and in the course of my career have rapidly adapted to many computing environments, from various mainframes, Crays, to PCs.   One anecdote you may appreciate: in stepping up to a contract agency's booth at a recent job fair, I was almost immediately greeted with ''We haven't been getting many legacy jobs lately'' (I have a mostly gray beard).   Another very large agency told me flat-out that most of their clients are only interested in younger people."
 
From a man in the Southwest: "I am an India born US citizen and am opposed to this program allowing 95000 work visas for foreign hi-tech workers.   I believe that the shortage, if any, has been created by laying off older hi-tech people such as myself.   I am 51 years old...   I have over twenty years of experience...   I applied for a job at [company name deleted] and I got a reply from them saying they did not have a suitable position for me.   Since they have large advertisements in the paper for software jobs for people with my background, I believe that I was rejected on the basis of my age.   [This company is] actively recruiting in India.   I know this because my brothers live in India and keep me posted of this."
 
From a 27-year-old man on the West Coast who graduated three years ago: "[When I interviewed for a position for a Java project], not one difficult technical question got thrown at me -- all the questions were behavioral or opinion type questions.   The most frequently repeated question was ''When did you graduate—I don't see that date here.''   After I was offered the job, I pointed out that I knew a coworker who is much more passionate about Java programming.   He has one more year of experience over me.   The manager shook his head, ''I don't think you understand -- we are looking for more recent college graduates.   Your case is a special case because we have to change the requirements to hire you.''"
 
(Similar themes were published in letters to the editor in the San Jose Mercury News, 1998 January 24, as well as in articles in US News and World Report, 1998 March 16, the San Diego Union-Tribune, 1998 March 7, the San Francisco Chronicle, 1998 March 9 and Wired Online News, 1998 February 25.)
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Americans who have been harmed by guest-work visa programs, off-shoring, and increased bodyshopping, and wish the media would cover their plight:
Hire Americans First
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1998
S. Richfield IEEE-USA
1. Most engineers are CS/IT, which has been hit much harder than EEs.
2. 59% of H-1Bs are computer related, while only 5% of H-1Bs are EEs.
3. 80% of employed IT engineers are <45 years old.
4. Industry apologists are not older IT engineers, who know better.
5. 83% of IT workers are native-born citizens.
6. 2.2M people in core IT occupations.
7. Only 19% still programming 20 years after graduation.
8. Only 2.3% of programmers qualify for unemployment benefits.
9. 90% of older degreed scientists and engineers are somehow employed (and 10% are not employed).
10. 7% of H-1Bs are over 40.
Figures on numbers of US STEM workers who are under-employed -- unable to land jobs that make use of their talents and knowledge -- are unavailable.

There was no shortage of gifted, knowledgeable, industrious US citizen STEM workers.

There is no shortage of talented US citizen STEM workers.

No credible evidence of impending shortage of gifted, knowledgeable, industrious US citizen STEM workers has been produced.

Neither this page, nor the opinions expressed or implied in it are endorsed by Michael Badnarik, Ron Paul, Bob Barr, Wayne Allyn Root, Warner Brothers, nor by my hosts, Kermit and Rateliff.
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