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Signal Photos

 

Sign of the times

A desperate economy calls for desperate measures

Posted: December 1, 2008 8:42 p.m.
Updated: December 2, 2008 4:55 a.m.

Kelly Kinney is going to extremes to find a job. She ironed her resume on her T-shirt.

 

Kelly Kinney has been out of work for two months despite her two bachelor's degrees.

But Kinney isn't one to play the victim. When paper resumes didn't work, she put hers on post cards. When that didn't work, she put it on a T-shirt.

Kinney, a Santa Clarita resident, was in downtown Los Angeles on Monday, walking the streets wearing her resume T-shirt with extra copies of her resume on hand. She also wears her resume to the supermarket and the mall - to anyplace, in fact, where she might get a job tip.

Her employment search is frustrating but she maintains a smile and realizes there are forces outside her control that keep her from getting a job. "It's the economy definitely," she said.

Kinney should know. One of her bachelor's degrees is in economics.

"The job market is oversaturated. We created jobs that we didn't need and got rid of jobs we needed. It's going to take some time for the economy and job market to correct," Kinney said.

Kinney, 29, moved to Santa Clarita in October 2007, running from winter weather in Dayton, Ohio. She kept her job as a marketing manager for Rexarc International, a manufacturing company. Her job allowed Kinney to work remotely for one year. She expected that she would find a new job within that year.

Three years of experience and her education proved to be a scarlet letter at interviews, Kinney said.

"Sometimes I'm overqualified. Sometimes I'm under-qualified," said the holder of a bachelor's degree in marketing.

And sometimes she's confused. Like when she pitched a marketing campaign during an interview that the company loved. "I came up with a marketing campaign and I was told they were going to use it, but not hire me," she said.

Kinney's search turned desperate when she lost her job Oct. 1. She needed a better plan to set her resume apart from others.

The new idea came in line at the American Music Awards.

"I saw a guy in line with a T-shirt and thought, ‘People pay attention to things they read on T-shirts,'" Kinnney said.

She turned her resume and cover letter into two iron-ons that she put on a white T-shirt. "I'm in marketing. I have to do anything I can to get noticed," she said.

The floundering job market may make other people consider listing their skills on their clothing, Kinney said. But her patience is running out.

If she doesn't get a break soon, Kinney will head back to school. "I've always wanted to go to law school. I might just start going now," she said.

Kinney admits that putting her resume on a T-shirt is a pretty slick marketing ploy but she doesn't expect the trick to land her the dream job with a coveted salary.

"I just want to work. I don't care about the money," she said.

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