Just my two cents here. When I graduated (way back in 1977), I avoided any type of city or government type LA position – like the plague. Well, I really felt that going to work for a private practice LA firm would provide me with a much better learning atmosphere. And, it did. I worked for some extremely creative and talented LA’s.
That being said, I think in Wyatt’s case, he had (8) years of experience before he went to work for a city government. So, he had design & creative skills to bring with him. For young LA’s, I’m just not sure that working for a city, state or Federal design group is the best path. Wyatt, you’re much more qualified than I am to address this issue.
After 13 years working for a couple of LA private practice firms, I went out on my own – for the next 20+ yrs. before retiring. I just really enjoyed that freedom of creative expression that being self-employed provided me.
But, I do agree with what you stated, Tonie. There are a ton of LAs out there searching for jobs. With today’s economy, you really can’t afford to be too selective. Getting some LA experience as soon as you can after graduating is important.