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Jobs with a lot of free time.

  1. Apr 22, 2009 #1
    I'm wondering if anyone can suggest jobs at which I would have a lot of free time, to work on my computer. I have a couple of ideas for projects, but they won't produce any income for the short term. Any suggestions of jobs I could look for? I have my BSc in Math Phys, but I'm not particular about what field I work in, as long as I've got free time. I'm thinking of stuff along the lines of the guy who sits in the photo radar van, or maybe security guard at an old folks home (though that may depend on the home).

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 22, 2009 #2
    I can think of a few. Bum, drifter, convict, congressman, etc.
     
  4. Apr 22, 2009 #3

    mgb_phys

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    To quote a very very old joke.
    child1>when I grow up I want to be a school crossing guard
    child2>why?
    child1>Cos you don't need to start work until you're 65
     
  5. Apr 22, 2009 #4

    f95toli

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    There are jobs where people work for example two weeks and then have three weeks off. This is pretty common in for example the oil industry (especially for people who work on platforms at sea).
    Note, however, that "two weeks" really means 14 days straight, usually 12 hours or more a day (or night). It is hard work so it is by no means an easy life.
    I did two rotations like this when I was working on a shipyard in Norway one summer (when I was still an undergraduate student). It is a strange life; especially when you are working nights 14 days in a row like I did the first rotation.
     
  6. Apr 22, 2009 #5
    A substitute school teacher may be an idea. They can have a few free periods during the day to shoot the breeze. Everything is usually laid out for you by the regular teacher, which generally consists of giving the students review work (since your a sub and your not expected to know the content) during class while you supervise (or baby-sit) the students.
     
  7. Apr 22, 2009 #6

    mgb_phys

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  8. Apr 22, 2009 #7
    f95toli, not the sort of thing I was looking for, thanks for the suggestion though.

    buffordboy23, thanks for the suggestion, I will look into it.
     
  9. Apr 22, 2009 #8
    I'm just wondering, how often do jobs allow you to have at least a bit of control over your own hours? I'd want to work four 10-12 hour shifts per week so I can have a 3 day weekend.
     
  10. Apr 22, 2009 #9

    Pengwuino

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    What in the world are you planning on doing that you need to re-arrange your life around your computer???
     
  11. Apr 23, 2009 #10
    Right now I work a really crappy job. I have a couple of projects in mind that will hopefully produce income eventually, but no time to work on them (wife and kid). I'm currently too late to apply to the grad program I would be interested in for fall semester, so, I figure if I can find a dead-end job which allows me time to work on my own things, that would be good for the time being. Then I can apply either to winter semester, or next fall.
     
  12. Apr 24, 2009 #11
    Any more advice?
     
  13. Apr 24, 2009 #12

    MATLABdude

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    Night watchman? Other types of 'security' gigs? Pay is crappy, and it's boring (if it weren't, that's probably a bad thing). But as long as you make rounds, and maintain vigilance (depending on the specific gig), it's a way to tide yourself over for a few months.
     
  14. Apr 24, 2009 #13
    Well that changes everything. If your looking for a job where you work low hours while having job security and benefits such as health care, you will probably never find one. Do you have any very special skills that you could exploit for a consulting job?
     
  15. Apr 24, 2009 #14
    How do you know this? Sure, you probably missed the application deadline, but did you talk to anybody at the university to see if it was worth it to have your application reviewed anyways, in case someone decided to drop out of the program, which would potentially open a spot for your admission? This is a long shot, but it's funny how things work out sometimes.
     
  16. Apr 24, 2009 #15
    Event or response driven operations.

    Many industrial plants need skilled people to oversee and respond to faults. When things operate smoothly (often due to decisions and small adjustments made by the operator) the job involves simple oversight and occasional process control testing.

    I run an industrial wastewater plant at night which allows me to get quite a bit of homework done provided things run smoothly.

    It's not six figures, but it pays the bills.

    EDIT: You often need to invest a few years before you are trusted with these types of positions though.
     
  17. Apr 24, 2009 #16
    I don't need job security or benefits. I only need it for short term (1 year or less).

    Yes I talked to the person in charge of admissions. They already have more students accepting than they were supposed to have placements.

    How does one get a position like this?
     
  18. Apr 25, 2009 #17
    Look into getting state certification as a water or wastewater operator, then find a 2nd or 3rd shift position. Wages are usually $18-$25/hr + benefits.

    Once you rack up some experience you might even be able to chief a plant which is primarily response-driven as well, but involves some administrative work and personnel duties. Chief positions range anywhere from $50k-$100k depending on the size and complexity of the plant.

    Of course there are other industrial operations positions which are response driven, but I'm only familiar with water/wastewater.

    It's similar to being a fireman. When things are good you polish the truck, cook dinner, and play cards. But when a fire breaks out you are expected to work hard until things are stable. I might do a couple hours of process control a night along with 4-5 hours of homework - but if something fails I might spend 12 hours straight getting stuff up and running again.

    You need to be comfortable with both a wrench and a spreadsheet - be very reliable, and competent under pressure.
     
  19. Apr 25, 2009 #18
    You need to take a cold hard look at your situation. Most physics graduate programs are desperate for qualified students. There are no "deadlines" if they really want you. "not this year" is a nice way for them to say "never". Employment in a dead-end job is going to be a huge strike against you when you reapply. Go find a real job that uses your programming skills. Industry treats a B.S. Physics identically to a B.S in engineering, so write "software engineer" on your resume You can also find a short-term job at most universities.
     
  20. Apr 25, 2009 #19
    University IT support. The computers run themselves & you can do your own projects for a fair slice of the time, or even as part of your work if you are a persuasive sort....
     
  21. Apr 25, 2009 #20

    Choppy

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    I would offer a few contrary opinions to Stronglight.

    My understanding is that most graduate programs turn down applicants who meet the minimum requirements (and thus are qualified) because there are more applicants than there are spots.

    In general graduate school admission deadlines are pretty firm. There are exceptions though, but I think the circumstances are pretty exceptional. More commonly what I've seen happen is students taking work as research assistants until the next cohort of admissions goes through and sometimes the work develops into thesis material.

    So far as I know, one can always re-appy with an improved CV, better grades, etc. and the evaluation processes is independent from year to year.

    This certainly isn't the case in Canada, and I suspect through most of the US. Engineering is generally a profession that requires professional certification (P Eng - I believe it's called). As a physics graduate you may have the skills to do what many engineers do, but you don't have the same certification, which means you can't fulfil certain roles that legally require engineering certification.

    Further, claiming to be something you're not is (a) unethical, and (b) can land you in a lot of hot water (not getting hired, subsequently being fired, have difficulty getting another job).
     
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