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Change in career at mid 40s

(9 Posts)
mumof2kiddos Fri 10-Mar-17 20:05:12

I worked in IT for a number of years after my graduation. Then went on to have my kids and taken a break for 7 years. Out of this 4 yrs as full time stay-at-home mum and 2 years working as volunteer and part-time. Now I am doing my Masters and expect to complete this year. The Masters is in Environmental Management area so it will be totally a new sector, apart from a little bit of project management aspect which I had done in my previous work-exp. I apply as a fresh graduate recruit or go for a higher more experienced role? I have to remember that I have zero experience in the Environment sector though!!

Am I mad to even contemplate such a career change at this age? Will the recruiters just throw away my CV when they look at my age and experience profile?

OP’s posts: |
Nasreen Fri 10-Mar-17 20:29:21

Just wanted to wish you luck. I'm a career changer also and would quite like to study counselling or something similar, having been a teacher, SAHM and a few other things.

I would think you would have to apply as a fresh graduate , if you have little or no experience in your newly chosen field ( I could be wrong).

As a person of a similar age, I would hope age and experience counted for a great deal. That said, I have an interview on Monday and have successfully convinced myself that I will be up against a load of twenty something graduates!

lljkk Fri 10-Mar-17 20:34:44

I would go for the roles that someone age 23 fresh with that masters would go for. You've had 7 yrs out from your original skillset and are changing direction. (I have some relevant experience, sharp right turn after 12 yrs working and 8 yrs as a SAHM, I went for a very junior role initially; then only took 18 m to get back to my previous level).

But... they say women undersell themselves. If you see a more senior position that you know you can do, then why not apply? What do you have to lose?

hutchblue Fri 10-Mar-17 20:58:40

Could you find a hybrid role that combines IT and environment that means you can side-step into something inbetween the two levels.

I've done that repeatedly in my career and worked in lots of different industries yet never lost any advantage through the moves.

People always say I have a very interesting CV!

Good luck and just go for it. Don't hesitate to apply for something even if it does sound a bit 'senior'. You've clearly got heaps of experience and I'm sure many of your skills are transferable.

mumof2kiddos Fri 10-Mar-17 21:11:33

Thank you all so much! I am so pessimistic about myself at times yet cannot share these worries with anyone in real life.

I am absolutely ok to start as a fresher, but do companies take 40+ someone at that level at all? I think that will be my greatest drawback, when compared to another fresh graduate who has the same qualification but a lot less younger than me!

OP’s posts: |
lljkk Sat 11-Mar-17 08:32:58

Does working in IT mean you do programming in SQL or sys admin work, or what? What software/OS are you handy with?

Danger in mixed role is it could veer back into an IT support role with very little Presumably that's not why you did the MSc.

mumof2kiddos Sat 11-Mar-17 08:50:48


No I was all along involved with Project Management and Business Analysis of Software Projects - So no real hands-on coding experience.

And yes I DO NOT want to get back to IT at all. Much has evolved in this sector over the years and it will be extremely difficult for me to catch up now. Most importantly I wont be able to put my MSc degree subject to use and that is unacceptable for me.

I am very sure as to what kind of work I want to do but my worries are that potential employers might reject me based on my age and experience when I apply for an entry-level position.

OP’s posts: |
lljkk Sat 11-Mar-17 13:55:09

the Radio 4 programme on at noon on a Saturday (I forget the name... Paul Lewis?) was talking all about this situation, today. Theresa May/Hammond have launched a programme to help women age 40+ get back into work. Listen again to R4.

hutchblue Sat 11-Mar-17 15:56:26

You could call some recruitment agencies in envt mangt and see what they say?

Is there anyone else on your course who's mature student like you or has there previously been that you could get in touch with?

And does your faculty have anything to say about it/any guidance?

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