How can I escape the cycle of being overqualified/underqualified?

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This topic contains 7 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by  Peter Sperry 8 years, 1 month ago.

  • Author
  • #112004

    Dilyana Nicolova

    In just a few months I will be receiving my M.A. in Political Science. Even though this should be a happy event, I am experiencing some trouble landing a job which deeply concerns me. So, I wanted to see if any of you would have an advice for me!

    The problem I face today is the lack of experience in administration. I have been looking at entry positions in many geographical areas. The issue always seems to be that I am overqualified for the basic entry-level, no experience positions because of education and other skills like languages, programs etc., and underqualified for one step higher positions due to the lack of experience. I have completed 2 different internships, in order to gain some knowledge about the processes in governmental agencies. I truly loved my experiences there!

    I currently work as an operations manager for a business, which truly seems to hurt me more than help me. I have more than 4 years experience in this area, but I just cannot seem to channel it as an advantage when applying for a job!

    My questions is how to escape the never ending cycle of overqualified/underqualified?

    Any advice and ideas will be appreciated!

    Thank you,


  • #112018

    Peter Sperry

    How have you managed to accumulate 4 years experience in operations managment and lack experience in administration? These two areas are fairly closely related. Get some guidance on your resume and cover letters to better describe how your operations managment background translates to administrative experience.

  • #112016

    Steve Ressler

    What type of job are you looking for? Federal, state, local, consulting?

    If federal, I’d focus on GS-9 jobs to get foot in door and there’s a lot of quick promotions

  • #112014

    Stephen Peteritas


    One of GovLoop’s featured bloggers and all around good guys Gadi Ben-Yehuda took on your post and answered your question:

  • #112012

    Dilyana Nicolova

    I am looking at state, and federal jobs. Thanks for the advice!

  • #112010

    Dilyana Nicolova

    I will definately review and maybe change my resume and cover letter a bit. Thank you!

  • #112008

    Esther Dacanay


    What specific career series are you aiming at? It’s important to make sure that the job descriptions you have in your federal intern experience at least somewhat lines up with the skill set of the jobs you are applying to. If you don’t have all the right “wording” in there to support your candidacy for that position, then you will continually be on the overqualified/underqualified cycle. If you need federal resume assistance, check out

  • #112006

    Dilyana Nicolova

    Thank you for the tip! It helped me a lot in narrowing my search! I appreciate it!

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