Non-desk jobs - Career guidance

In summary: It seems that the best option for someone with a BA in Fine Art is to look into fields like Computational Engineering or Mechanical Engineering, or possibly even Optical Engineering. However, it may be difficult to find a job in these fields if you have a chronic shoulder- and neck-tension problems. The fields I mentioned (Mechanical-, Computational or Optical-engingeering) would mostly lead to desk jobs, at least from what I've gathered from the job market here in Iceland. So I'm wondering if there is some field I could move into, where I can use my current knowledge in physics and math, that doesn't necessarily have a desk
  • #1
dreamspy
41
2
Hi there

My question in short is:
"What would be the best field to move into if I'm looking for non-desk physics/engineering jobs"

Let me elaborate a bit on this. I have a BA degree in fine art, some projects can be seen here http://frimannkjerulf.tumblr.com/ I also have BS degree in physics which I completed 2 years ago. There isn't much going on in the academic world here in Iceland physics wise, so regarding a Masters Program I've been looking into fields like Computational Engineering or Mechanical Engineering, or possibly even Optical Engineering.

But the problem is that over the years I've managed to build up a chronic shoulder- and neck-tension problems, which makes working at a desk for prolonged times quite demanding on my wellbeing. I've spent thousands of dollars on physiotherapists and chiropractors. Tried to do as much exercise as possible alongside my desk-jobs, to no avail. So it seems that I need to keep desk work to a minimum. Not avoid it completely maybe but something like 50/50 of desk work and some leg work would be nice.

The fields I mentioned (Mechanical-, Computational or Optical-engingeering) would mostly lead to desk jobs, at least from what I've gathered from the job market here in Iceland.

So I'm wondering if there is some field I could move into, where I can use my current knowledge in physics and math, that doesn't necessarily have a desk as a permanent end result?

I would say that Optical engineering is most likely to fulfill this requirement, but I'm only guessing. Anyone have some experience regarding that?
 
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  • #2
You are only guessing. Mechanical is the most likely to lead to field assignments. The other two will almost certainly lead to desk work. Mechanical can lead to field installations of products where you will travel and install equipment (in a large enough organization) or do field QC. If it is a smaller Mech firm, you might very well be designing AND then installing (and get the best of ALL worlds! :woot::H). Of course all jobs are different and the other two routes could lead to field service too. But I suspect your best bet for greatest chance of verity is Mech Eng.
 
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  • #3
Have you tried a standing desk? I use one due to chronic lower back problems from an injury and the fact that it's a hassle standing up with an prosthetic leg. I figure if you're ok with walking around outside, you would probably be ok standing inside at a desk.
 
  • #4
MarneMath said:
Have you tried a standing desk? I use one due to chronic lower back problems from an injury and the fact that it's a hassle standing up with an prosthetic leg. I figure if you're ok with walking around outside, you would probably be ok standing inside at a desk.

Actually forgot to mention that, I have a standing desk. It helps, but still not enough. Even though I'm standing it's not enough movement involved I guess, so I always lock up and get tense even when at a standing desk.
 
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  • #5
CalcNerd said:
You are only guessing. Mechanical is the most likely to lead to field assignments. The other two will almost certainly lead to desk work. Mechanical can lead to field installations of products where you will travel and install equipment (in a large enough organization) or do field QC. If it is a smaller Mech firm, you might very well be designing AND then installing (and get the best of ALL worlds! :woot::H). Of course all jobs are different and the other two routes could lead to field service too. But I suspect your best bet for greatest chance of verity is Mech Eng.

This is a good point. I've given mechanical engineering a though before. But I was told that it's usually quite difficult to get a job in that field. Not sure if this is true, anyone have some thoughts on this?
 
  • #6
dreamspy said:
This is a good point. I've given mechanical engineering a though before. But I was told that it's usually quite difficult to get a job in that field. Not sure if this is true, anyone have some thoughts on this?
I suppose it depends on what your point of comparison is, but in general MechE is probably one of the easiest fields to get a job in, provided you have good internship experience and are willing to move to where the work is. And for MechE, that can be pretty much everywhere.
 
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  • #7
Do note that engineering, especially field engineering work may involve significant travel. This means you're sitting again, except that the sitting may be driving a car, or worse, confinement in an airline seat.

Choose with care...
 
  • #8
To the OP:

I have read a number of articles about the best types of jobs for those with chronic back, shoulder, or neck pain, including the following:

http://www.atlanticspinecenter.com/...als-suffering-from-chronic-neck-or-back-pain/

From what I've found, it is not about having a standing desk or what not that matters, so much as not being in a fixed position or carrying on too many repetitive movements for too many hours throughout the day that makes the difference.

According to the article linked above , the 3 best jobs for those with chronic back pain are the following:

(1) Administrative assistant (given the low pay of this position, this is something you are obviously not thinking of)

(2) Self-employment

(3) Software developer (might seem surprising for you, but many larger companies have invested in adjustable desks, comfortable furniture for their employees, as well as allowing flexible schedules which would allow you to move around, etc.)

I would suspect that some engineering jobs would allow you similar accommodation as well.

Disclaimer: Please note that the article above is not, as far as I can tell, based on scientific publications, so the conclusions they reach may be at best tentative, so take it for what it's worth.
 
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1. What are non-desk jobs?

Non-desk jobs are careers that do not require sitting at a desk for the majority of the workday. These types of jobs typically involve more physical activity and may require working in various settings such as outdoors, factories, or on-site locations.

2. What are some examples of non-desk jobs?

Some examples of non-desk jobs include construction workers, delivery drivers, nurses, police officers, and retail sales associates. Other examples may include roles in the service or hospitality industry, such as restaurant servers or hotel housekeeping.

3. What are the benefits of pursuing a non-desk job?

There are several benefits to pursuing a non-desk job. These types of jobs often offer more physical activity, which can lead to better overall health and fitness. Non-desk jobs may also offer opportunities for hands-on learning and on-the-job training. Additionally, many people find non-desk jobs to be more engaging and fulfilling than traditional desk jobs.

4. What skills are important for non-desk jobs?

The skills needed for non-desk jobs can vary depending on the specific role. However, some important skills that can be beneficial for these types of jobs include physical strength and stamina, good hand-eye coordination, ability to work well under pressure, and strong communication skills. Certain non-desk jobs may also require specialized skills or training, such as operating heavy machinery or using specific tools.

5. How can I find a non-desk job that is right for me?

When searching for a non-desk job, it is important to consider your interests, skills, and physical abilities. You can start by researching different industries and job roles to find out which ones align with your interests and strengths. Networking and reaching out to people already working in non-desk jobs can also help you gain insight and find potential job opportunities. Additionally, career counseling or guidance services may be available to help you explore and pursue non-desk job options.

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