Should He Train for a New Career at Age 50?


Clarence writes:
It’s been over 18 months since I last held a full-time job in the electronics field.
I have placed many many resumes with employers. Many told me they have
hiring freezes most have cut back and not hiring at all and the rest are seeking
individuals with core experience. Also I’m 50 years old. Question: Do I keep
taking the rejections in stride and keep placing resumes hoping for a break.
Or should I drop my field and try to get a loan to go back to school and start
over again at age 50?!


The Career Doctor responds:
Of all the career fields I think technology has been hardest hit during these last few years
when our economy has been struggling and some jobs moved overseas.
I know you did not plan to be out of work for 18 months — no one ever expects a job hunt
to last too long — but what have you been doing all this time (besides looking for a new job)?
Ideally besides looking for a new job you have been doing some consulting or gaining
some new skills and training. If you want to stay in the field I would immediately get
working on both of these areas because employers don’t want to hire anyone — especially
someone in the technology field — who has been doing nothing for 18 months.
At your age will you experience some age discrimination? It’s certainly possible
especially in the technology field but there are numerous things you can do on your
resume and in the interview to deflect some of it.
Are you too old to change careers? Not at all. In fact there is growing evidence that the
baby boomers will totally transform the stereotypes of older workers and the
rules of career change later in life.