No jobs for Michigan

Forbes recently ran an article on the best and worst cities for jobs in the US. And surprise, surprise, Michigan cities appear most on the worst list.

It’s understandable that New Orleans is currently the worst city for jobs, and it’s probably obvious what #2 and #3 are as well: Detroit and Flint. And how interesting is it that Detroit and Flint are also ranked #2 and #3 for most dangerous cities in the US? Coincidence?

The rest of the worst cities for jobs are 4. Canton, OH; 5. Warren, MI; 6. Hickory, NC; 7. Lansing, MI; 8. Dayton, OH; 9. Youngstown, OH; 10. Ann Arbor, MI. Half the list is Michigan! I love my home state, but my god, does its economy suck!

From the article:
“The main artery for job loss in the U.S. runs through Ohio and Michigan, which had eight of the 10 metros with the biggest job losses. Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama both campaigned vigorously in Ohio in February, blasting the North American Free Trade Agreement. No doubt that was an appeal to voters in places like Canton, Dayton and Youngstown, where NAFTA is associated with sinking employment.

“NAFTA is used as a whipping boy for all the problems that these areas are struggling with,” says Zandi. Yet the culprit for most of the lost jobs in the area is the deterioration of the domestic auto industry. The struggles of Chrysler, Ford Motor and General Motors have caused thousands of jobs to flee locales with heavy auto employment, like Detroit and Flint.

Any turnaround in these cities is likely to take years, and there is no silver bullet that will do it. But Zandi has three tenets that these cities should follow. First, educate the population. In Canton, Detroit, Flint and Youngstown, less than 18% of the adult population has a college degree. Next up, work on improving the infrastructure.

Finally it is important to keep costs down to try and entice new businesses. Michigan in particular has work to do on this front. Business costs in Ann Arbor, Detroit and Warren are all above the national average.”

And the best cities for jobs: 1. Cape Coral, FL; 2. Las Vegas, NV; 3. McAllen, TX; 4. Port St. Lucie, FL; 5. Naples, FL; 6. Ocala, FL; 7. Riverside, CA; 8. Provo, UT; 9. Myrtle Beach, SC; 10. Phoenix, AZ.

So if I ever did move back to the US, I’m heading for the Southwest – though I will always be a Midwesterner at heart!

On teaching English in French lycées

I have officially completed my second year as a teaching assistant! And I got my car back Thursday night, so I could drive it to work and back one last time. I finished my last few hours by having the students play Apples to Apples, Scattergories and doing a mock speed dating session. Over the […]

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Y en. (Not a French donkey.)

I hate y and en. These little words have caused so much confusion for me in French. The basic rules are: 1) y replaces a prepositional phrase (except those beginning with de). It translates as “there” or “it” and sometimes it is not translated into English. On va à Boston demain. We’re going to Boston […]

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April (snow) showers

I keep telling everybody that the weather in Annecy is gorgeous in April. “Don’t worry, last year it was sunny and 70.” “You won’t need warm clothes or an umbrella.” Ummm. This is what it looked like yesterday: Today it’s raining, but it still feels just as cold. And the forecast for the next 5 […]

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Goodbye Assistantship, Hello Unemployment

Some good news finally. My car still isn’t fixed, but at least I only have 3 days of work left! I work Tuesday, Thursday and Friday and then my second year as an assistant will be over. Technically 7 month assistants work until April 30, but because of the 2 week break (April 12-27), that […]

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The one where Jennie finds out she’s self-employed.

In the midst of trying to figure out my American income taxes, I discovered that I am considered “self-employed in a US business” thanks to the Google Ads on my website. Huh? I’m self-employed? But I don’t even make enough money to break even each month! I had thought my Google payments would just be […]

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Almost April

Our internet was fixed Thursday night. I’m not sure how I managed to live without internet for 12 days, but I did get a lot of work done on my Lesson Plans page and French & German Comparative Tutorial. Some of my classes were cancelled yesterday because parents “sequestered” the teachers in the building as […]

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And it keeps getting better and better…

RIP Renault Super 5. The garagiste said the entire motor needs to be replaced. That would cost more than the 1200 I paid for it. So now I’m out all those euros and an automatic car. I’m so frustrated and angry and just sad. I could barely afford that car, which took four months to […]

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Worst Week Ever

Not a good way to start the weekend. So in addition to the no internet/TV/phone thing, I now have no car. It decided to overheat and leave me stranded on the highway Friday afternoon after I left work. And the weather gods wanted to make things worse, so they made it snow and rain all […]

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Another I hate France day.

No internet for 36 hours chez nous!!! At least we figured out the problem is the ADSL line and not the Freebox. Unfortunately, the helpful customer service people at Free claim they can’t send a technician until NEXT WEDNESDAY. If France Telecom can’t fix it before then, I will be without internet for a while. […]

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Why is Jennie no longer in France?

I created this blog in September 2006 when I moved to France from Michigan to teach English. Many of the earlier posts are about my personal life in France, dealing with culture shock, traveling in Europe and becoming fluent in French. In July 2011, I relocated to Australia to start my PhD in Applied Linguistics. Although I am no longer living in France, my research is on foreign language pedagogy and I teach French at a university so these themes appear most often on the blog. I also continue to post about traveling and being an American abroad.

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