I recently moved across the country, from the southwest to Milwaukee, WI, and started job hunting for a planning practice position. I don't really have the typical background of a planner - I have a master's in biology, and changed fields to planning, and am now finishing up an interdisciplinary Ph.D. with a planning concentration.
I have some good skills and experience, but not having the typical background of a planner, I feel, puts me at a disadvantage when applying for positions that are advertised and get lots of responses. So I'm trying to tap into the unadvertised positions by networking. However, networking is not my strong suit. Does anyone have advice or suggestions? The biggest problem I'm facing is that since I'm new in the area, I really don't know anyone who can suggest other people to talk to. How do I get started?