How does a man with a Ph.D end up living in a homeless shelter?
Maurice Johnson is a 55-year-old graduate from Purdue University and has his Masters degree in Electrical Engineering, Acoustics, and is a graduate of Dartmouth College with a Master of Science, in Plasma Physics and he is HOMELESS.
Maurice had to make a difficult decision just after his father died, his mother who was ill with Alzheimer was about to lose her house, so he sold all his belongings to ensure his mother had a home to live in during her final years. He says "My parents paid for my school", so the least he could do was make sure his mother was comfortable in her own home even though "she did not know where she was", says Maurice. Once his mother was settled in he went back to work at Lockheed Aerospace Corporation in CA where there was 30,000 other engineers employed. However shortly afterwards the economy tanked and they downsized to just 3,000 engineers. He says with "little money and a little bad luck" it is very difficult to get back on your feet however he landed a job in Boston and made his way to the new city. Once he got to Boston he got more bad news, the company decided to go with someone else. Maurice had no other choice but to move into a homeless shelter, an experience he hopes to never re-live again.
Since living in Boston he has had some jobs, he taught at North Eastern for four months but they only paid $1000.00 for the entire four months. He has had job offerings in San Francisco but was only promised 15 hours of work per week.
When asked why he does not return home he replies that Cleveland is a "ghost town", with unemployment around 10% it is nearly impossible for him to find a job. He is disappointed with politicians and like most people is angry that they seem to be doing nothing but worrying about re-election and their absurd oversized salaries.
He says his main problem with finding a job is his age and that he is over qualified for many positions. He would love to teach, he says that teaching physics would be "fun", and he is looking forward to the future.
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