Michelle Rafter

I'm a Portland, OR, freelance business reporter writing about the latest work, tech and auto trends for regional and national news media and websites. I write a jobs column for Orange County Register and Los Angeles Register,  and contribute to Edmunds.com, Westways,  Workforce Management  and AAA, among others. I also work as a contract editor, writer and ghostwriter on content marketing and social media campaigns. I blog at WordCount: Freelancing in the Digital Age, and am active on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. I'm married with three kids, and love reading, dancing, hiking, camping, coffee, yoga, cooking, anything vintage and the Sunday New York Times crossword.

A Message to My Younger Self: Jump

The summer after my sophomore year at a small Catholic college in Los Angeles, I applied for an internship at NBC in New York City. The craziest thing isn’t that I got the gig, it’s that I got the gig and didn’t go. I was broke, and unlike the characters in “Girls,” didn’t have parents I could fall back on to fund an unpaid internship in Manhattan for the summer. ...more
@bcherkowsky An asute comment. In the long run, I got where I wanted to get, it just took me ...more

'Every Career Will Be a Career in Technology'

This Week in Kaplan University's Visionary Voices video series: instead of fearing technology, embrace it. Watch the video to learn how....more

Pursuing an Encore Career as a Teacher

This Week in Kaplan University's Visionary Voices video series: changing careers to be a teacher. Watch the video now!...more
@isthisthemiddle Thanks for sharing the details of what sounds like an innovative program. And ...more

Building a (Digital) Career Network

This Week in Kaplan University's Visionary Voices video series: going online to network for your career. Watch the video now!...more
Sherry Nouraini Thank you for your question. This post is part of our Recareering section at ...more

The Future of Work Is Marching to Your Own Beat

This Week in Kaplan University's Visionary Voices video series: Bloggers have a leg up on other job hunters. Watch the video now!...more

The 500 Blog Posts That Changed My Career

Sometime in June 2010, I pushed the "Publish" button on the 500th post on my blog. Those 500 blog posts changed my life – by helping me reinvent my career. In two and a half years, I went from stay at home mom to full-time journalist and blogger making a lot more than I ever did as a staff writer at a major daily newspaper. And it all happened because I blogged. ...more
I also want to change my career,but any how useful info. Hope to see more good posts in the future.more

In Recareering, What You Learn Today, You Earn Tomorrow

This Week in Kaplan University's Visionary Voices video series: To stay competitive in the workforce, you have to continually invest in your education -– especially if you're making a career change. Or as former U.S. Secretary of Labor Alexis Herman likes to say, "What you learn today is what you earn tomorrow." Watch the video now!...more
@Seanna Denee' Thank you so much for sharing this. If someone's trying to switch from one ...more

To Switch Careers, Hit the Books

[Editor's note -- Starting this week, the Reinvent Yourself series will feature a weekly Q&A with a Kaplan University professor or instructor on some aspect of changing careers. – Michelle V. Rafter]...more
Thanks for sharing!more

To Give Your New Business a Leg Up, Think Like a Customer

This Week in Kaplan University's Visionary Voices video series: If you're starting a business as part of your career reinvention, the best thing you can do is think like a customer. "You have to live their life. You have to get as close to that customer as you can," says Deborah Hopkins, chief innovation officer at Citi and once hailed by Fortune as the country's second most powerful woman in business. Watch the video now!...more
@lifesimplified Great insights, thanks for sharing!more

Make Learning Tech Skills Part of Your Re-Careering Journey

This Week in Kaplan University's Visionary Voices video series: Consciously decide what it is you want to learn that will help you get from here to tomorrow to the next day, Wendy Hawkins, Executive Director of the Intel Foundation, counsels: Don't stop learning "what is it that you want to be when you grow up." Watch the video now!...more