I am 55 years old, a college graduate with a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering, and 30 years of solid experience in engineering and marketing. I have never smoked marijuana or been arrested. I have even been married to the same woman for 30 years.

I am looking for a job. I have responded to a large number of ads and received very few responses. I found that although I have an impressive resume, I can't get any of the major corporations -- all of whom profess to be "equal opportunity employers" -- interested. It seems that most employers are only hiring recent college graduates. I confirmed my suspicion that the problem is my age by sending pairs of resumes that were identical in all respects except that one contained enough information to suggest my age; the other didn't. In all instances, only the latter resume got bites.

Why don't companies give us older candidates a break?

Your letter is altogether too credible. Regarding why, I suspect a major factor is that many of the hiring supervisors in today's work places are comparatively young. A 30-year-old manager may feel awkward about supervising someone who could be his father or mother and may want to avoid such a situation by ignoring the resume.

Your own experiment suggests a way to get your foot in the door. By leaving your earlier experiences out of your resume, you may improve your chances of being offered an interview. Once you meet your would-be boss face to face, his or her discomfort with your age might diminish.

I have just had my two-year anniversary at my place of employment. All employees are reviewed at such times and, if the review is favorable, they receive a raise.

I received an outstanding appraisal and was told by my boss that I would get a raise. Well, eight paychecks later I still haven't received my raise. I have questioned my boss about this a number of times and she always says, "Next pay period."

When I mentioned my situation to a few of my coworkers, they all said they got their raises without any delay. I'm a little apprehensive about mentioning the subject to my boss. What should I do?

You need to ask your boss if she is trying to tell you something. Apprehensive as you might be, if she has a problem with you, you won't be able to hide from it. The problem will come out sooner or later. You might as well precipitate it, especially as your employer owes you your raise.

Andrew Grove is president of Intel Corp. of Santa Clara, Calif., author of the book "High Output Management" and a frequent lecturer on management. Please send questions to him in care of the San Jose Mercury News, Business News Department, 750 Ridder Park Drive, San Jose, Calif. 95190. He will answer questions in his column.