In case you hadn't heard, the job market is terrible. Especially in Silicon Valley. Whereas at my last job it took me only two days from interview to offer, I've been searching for over two months now with barely a nibble. My family is fortunate enough not to be experiencing financial hardship, thanks to my husband's contract work and help from my parents, but it's pretty demoralizing.
I do, however, have a second volunteer job now that is extremely fulfilling. I'm working at the CET Immigration and Employment Program in San Jose, which provides citizenship and immigration services and strengthens civic involvement among immigrants. I administer ESL placement tests and give mock citizenship interviews, along with some basic administrative work. While I don't use my Spanish as frequently as I do at clinic, the conversations are less predictable and exercise more of my vocabulary than the medical terms I already have down pat.
In widening my job search beyond the electronic design automation industry, I've discovered two fields that interest me greatly: software localization/internationalization and computational linguistics. The former refers to adapting software for global users; the latter deals with modeling language concepts from a computational perspective (e.g. machine translation, natural language processing). Both seem like ideal ways to combine my extensive software experience with my passion and talent for foreign languages. Do any of my readers have knowledge and/or contacts in either of these fields?