Long way to a permanent job

MILAN The debt-crisis in Italy makes it harder to secure a job. 40 year old Francesco Rossi holds two academic degrees, but even for him, its almost impossible to find employment.

By Jesper Ernlund Lassen

Francesco Rossi is trying to find a permanent job so far without luck. Photo: Jesper Ernlund Lassen

A smile clearly comes easy for him and he seems happy as if nothing could rock his world this early evening, at the Zara Metro station in the north of Milan.

Not even the talk about his job situation seems to get to him.

He is very well educated, 40-year-old Francesco Rossi is an academic and holds a degree as both an architect and a teacher but his prospects of finding a job in the future is looking dire.

“I have only been teaching three months this year, so I really have to do something else besides teaching,” says Francesco Rossi.

He is lucky to also have his education as an architect.

“My father is also an architect and I can make some work for him and that is good for now, but it will only be for a limited time. My father will sooner or later retire and then I will not have that extra job when I need it”, explains Francesco Rossi.

Even if his father owns his own company, there is no chance that Francesco Rossi can take over that business.

“My fathers company is very specialized in elevators and I can only do limited things in his company,” says Francesco Rossi.

Extra education

In 2003 Francesco Rossi decided to enroll in a two year teacher program, which he was able to because he already had an academic degree in advance.

With this education he could teach in public schools and not only in private schools.

But even before the debt crisis hit Italy, the chances of getting a permanent job with an academic degree were low.

“You can easily work as a temporarily teacher for many years, but the crisis has made this problem even bigger,” says Francesco Rossi.

And the problems with working as a temporarily teacher and architect have a tremendous effect on Francesco Rossi’s life. For instance he can maximum work at one school for one year before he has to move to a new school. And there is also the economic aspect of not having a permanent job.

“I only get salary ten months in a year, if I work full time the whole year in the school, where a permanent teacher gets 13 months of salary. This is because I don’t get paid in the holiday period. And it is very hard to get by this way, even if I can work as an architect once in a while,” explains Francesco Rossi.

Family help

The job situation of Francesco Rossi does influence his housing situation but he is still very fortunate with the 40 square meters apartment that he shares with his girlfriend.

“My apartment used to belong to my deceased grandmother and it is now owned by my parents and I’m really lucky with this. Otherwise I don’t know how I should manage to pay a rent,” says Francesco Rossi.

That a 40 square meters apartment is too small an apartment for two persons and that it sets limits for him and his girlfriend, Francesco does not even consider that much for now.

“The space is limited but I’m just happy to have a place for now. However it is not possible to have children in our apartment. There are no prospects for children,” says Francesco Rossi, who does not have any current plans of having children with his girlfriend.

And he is even lucky to have a very small apartment.

“Almost all people under 40 years I know can’t get their own apartment because they simply cannot afford it,” says Francesco Rossi.

Crisis makes it worse

The hope, that Francesco Rossi had, about getting a steady work life with his new teaching education over the last years, has faded.With the debt crisis the schools have to save money and the easiest way to cut spending for the schools is not to hire permanent teachers, explains Francesco Rossi.

And the future does not look any brighter for the Italian architect and teacher.

“As for right now I combine my income. 30 percent come from teaching and the remaining 70 percent comes from working as an architect but as I said, I won’t be capable of doing this in the future, when my father retires,” says Francesco.

Willing to move

That the crisis casts long shadows over the future of his entire life, does not worry Francesco Rossi and he knows what he is going to do.

“My future depends on the next couple of years. If I don’t see improvement in my future job situation, I will have to go elsewhere. This could even be abroad I’m prepared to go anywhere, ” says Rossi, who already has been living for one year in London earlier.

But even with his future being rather uncertain he is not depressed at all.

“I have a stable character and I’m generally optimistic for my future. And I have more chances because I have a good education,” says Francesco Rossi.

Read more about the fired railway workers, who have been demonstrating for three months.

About jelassen