Out of a job? Try plan B. | WBEZ
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Eight Forty-Eight

Plan B: How hard economic times are prompting some to make a career change

Whether you think the recession is over or not, it’s been hard on many people in the Midwest and the country.

So, our Changing Gears team went out to find some people whose circumstances have forced them make some tough choices that are, perhaps, working out for the better.

Here are three stories of plan B.

(Photo by Dustin Dwyer)

  • Name: Beth Coats
  • Lives: West Olive, Mich.
  • Plan B: Peace Corps

Beth Coats had worked in a medical practice for years. Divorce, job loss, and foreclosure added up to a bad situation.

With little to lose, Coats is hoping to do something she’s been thinking about for decades: the Peace Corps. She loves travel, so why not?


(Photo by Dan Bobkoff)
Name: Katlin Petrow

  • Lives: Chagrin Falls, Ohio
  • Plan B: Pooch Parade

Katlin Petrow always loved animals. When her husband’s salary was no longer enough to support the family, Petrow decided to turn her interest into a career. She created Pooch Parade as a full service pet sitting, walking, and care provider.

With a growing number of clients, it’s turned into a significant revenue stream for the family.


(Photo by Niala Boodhoo)

  • Name: James Foster
  • Lives: Chicago, Ill.
  • Plan B: “I stay home, my wife works.”

Prior to being laid off in 2008, Foster had been a textbook editor.

He and his wife had just had their first child, Harry, and she was planning to stay home with him. They both hit the job market, and she got hired first.

While Foster said misses the intellectual stimulation of his career, he treasures the simple everyday moments he has with Harry, who’s now two. “I get to see all the firsts,” he said.







This story is informed by the Public Insight Network. It was produced by Dan Bobkoff with help from Niala Boodhoo, Sarah Alvarez, and Dustin Dwyer.

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