I have looked at a lot of job descriptions over the last three months. I started by looking to do a new job that is like my old job. It seems that mid-level-type people like myself aren't in demand, so much as entry-level and senior-level positions. This is OK. This has forced me to look around to see what else fits my skills.
I can tell you that when I use search terms that seem to describe what I'm looking for, what comes up are.... IT and medical jobs, overwhelmingly so. I search "laboratory", "research", "science and communication", "outreach", "research analyst", "science education", stuff like that. Searching "genetics" pulls up the EOE statement on many jobs, so it turns out that isn't very useful.
IT and medical. Can I just say at this point, that I have looked up to the sky several times, where presumably, my mom is up in the heavens, and said, "OK! You were right! If I had gone into nursing, instead of being put off by the thought of having to empty peoples' bedpans, I'd have no trouble finding a job right now. You were right!" She never pushed terribly hard (it wasn't her style) but my parents did suggest nursing as a career path for its stability, flexibility, good pay, etc.
I'm a little bummed out that many of the jobs that sound interesting to me are an hour's commute away, but that's how it goes. I was hesitant at first to apply for such jobs, but have worked up a little momentum so that I've got my resume and letter done, and I like how they represent my skills and experience. I just need to tweak them for each position. I think it is one of those things that I just have to keep seeing what's out there, and one of these times it's going to click. Or stick. Or whatever. Sounds a bit like finding a mate.
Anyway, I've applied for a couple of federal government positions in town, and have given up on the Biologist one that I thought would really be a good fit and opportunity. It's too bad, but I feel better knowing I did give it my best shot there. I've made the first cut for a regulatory-type job in town, which also had a lot of "read and interpret findings", writing and that kind of thing, so we'll see how that goes.
One job did come up yesterday, in Boulder, that I am excited about. It's for a Citizen Science Coordinator. It combines the academic (they want someone with a Botany degree), with the public outreach and using social media technology aspects that I'm looking for. I have no idea what this job would pay, but I'm very interested. Fingers crossed.