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View Full Version : 1 in 2 new graduates are jobless or underemployed



pwaldo
04-23-2012, 10:09 PM
http://finance.yahoo.com/news/1-2-graduates-jobless-underemployed-140300522.html;_ylt=AmK1A5cUL_LAc7EBMo7hDFWmWot4;_ ylu=X3oDMTRzZ3F0N2VuBGNjb2RlA2N0LmMEbWl0A0FydGljbG UgTW9zdCBQb3B1bGFyBHBrZwNmMjcwNDExYi0wMjBlLTM5N2Mt YjJiZC1jMTdmY2ZkMmI5NjcEcG9zAzEEc2VjA01lZGlhQkxpc3 RNaXhlZE1vc3RQb3B1bGFyQ0EEdmVyAzRhNzQ3YzIwLThkN2Et MTFlMS1iNmRlLWM3NGQxNzdkZWQxYQ--;_ylg=X3oDMTNoMjQ2azZhBGludGwDdXMEbGFuZwNlbi11cwRw c3RhaWQDOTE1M2I4NDYtY2MwYi0zMDk5LWI1M2QtYWNiOGY1OG NkMDQzBHBzdGNhdANwb2xpdGljc3xkZXN0aW5hdGlvbjIwMTIE cHQDc3RvcnlwYWdlBHRlc3QD;_ylv=3


The college class of 2012 is in for a rude welcome to the world of work.

A weak labor market already has left half of young college graduates either jobless or underemployed in positions that don't fully use their skills and knowledge.

Young adults with bachelor's degrees are increasingly scraping by in lower-wage jobs waiter or waitress, bartender, retail clerk or receptionist, for example and that's confounding their hopes a degree would pay off despite higher tuition and mounting student loans.

An analysis of government data conducted for The Associated Press lays bare the highly uneven prospects for holders of bachelor's degrees.

Opportunities for college graduates vary widely.

While there's strong demand in science, education and health fields, arts and humanities flounder. Median wages for those with bachelor's degrees are down from 2000, hit by technological changes that are eliminating midlevel jobs such as bank tellers. Most future job openings are projected to be in lower-skilled positions such as home health aides, who can provide personalized attention as the U.S. population ages.

Taking underemployment into consideration, the job prospects for bachelor's degree holders fell last year to the lowest level in more than a decade.

"I don't even know what I'm looking for," says Michael Bledsoe, who described months of fruitless job searches as he served customers at a Seattle coffeehouse. The 23-year-old graduated in 2010 with a creative writing degree.

Initially hopeful that his college education would create opportunities, Bledsoe languished for three months before finally taking a job as a barista, a position he has held for the last two years. In the beginning he sent three or four resumes day. But, Bledsoe said, employers questioned his lack of experience or the practical worth of his major. Now he sends a resume once every two weeks or so.

Bledsoe, currently making just above minimum wage, says he got financial help from his parents to help pay off student loans. He is now mulling whether to go to graduate school, seeing few other options to advance his career. "There is not much out there, it seems," he said.

His situation highlights a widening but little-discussed labor problem. Perhaps more than ever, the choices that young adults make earlier in life level of schooling, academic field and training, where to attend college, how to pay for it are having long-lasting financial impact.

"You can make more money on average if you go to college, but it's not true for everybody," says Harvard economist Richard Freeman, noting the growing risk of a debt bubble with total U.S. student loan debt surpassing $1 trillion. "If you're not sure what you're going to be doing, it probably bodes well to take some job, if you can get one, and get a sense first of what you want from college."

Andrew Sum, director of the Center for Labor Market Studies at Northeastern University who analyzed the numbers, said many people with a bachelor's degree face a double whammy of rising tuition and poor job outcomes. "Simply put, we're failing kids coming out of college," he said, emphasizing that when it comes to jobs, a college major can make all the difference. "We're going to need a lot better job growth and connections to the labor market, otherwise college debt will grow."

ensbergcollector
04-23-2012, 10:11 PM
A college degree used to mean something when only about half of college graduates went to college. now that a very high majority go, a college degree doesn't mean as much.

TheTGB
04-23-2012, 11:26 PM
I'm in the same boat as the person interviewed although my degree is wanted more. I know I'll be working on my Master's soon though.

duane1969
04-23-2012, 11:50 PM
I am starting on my Master's as well this fall. In this era a BA or BS is barely more than a glorified high school diploma (with $40k+ of debt in student loans LOL).

As an example of this, in my family (parents, aunts, uncles, cousins, in-laws, etc.) my wife was the first to get a degree and I was the second.

*censored*
04-24-2012, 01:03 AM
Coming out of college, I had to work part time for 2 and a half years in the field my degree was in before I got on somewhere full-time. Combining that with the fact my my parents lied to me and massively screwed me, I'm swamped in debt (credit cards to be able to even eat at times because it'll be a cold day in hell before I go on welfare, and the requisite student loans) that I can only slowly chip away at to get out from under.

marekschwarz33
04-24-2012, 01:41 AM
Hopefully things will turn around soon...I'm a freshman in college (Economics B.S major) so my time to enter the workforce is just around the corner. Debt won't be too much of a problem for me luckily. I'm going to a very affordable school and I'm getting help from scholarships and my parents. I have no clue what the job prospects will be for my degree in the future though. They're seem pretty decent now from the research I've done but who knows...

themanishere
04-24-2012, 02:09 AM
The proliferation in soft degrees is unsavory...like getting a degree for the sake of having one. It's unfortunate because many of the liberal art/science fields are interesting, just not "needed" in today's market.

I am very fortunate to have my parents help me with tuition. I work part-time and am in a full-time Master's right now, so it's a big help to have my folks chip in.

I'm considering starting my own business when I finish, given how the market is so volatile. (At least, that's the plan while I'm still young.)

duane1969
04-24-2012, 09:02 AM
Hopefully things will turn around soon...I'm a freshman in college (Economics B.S major) so my time to enter the workforce is just around the corner. Debt won't be too much of a problem for me luckily. I'm going to a very affordable school and I'm getting help from scholarships and my parents. I have no clue what the job prospects will be for my degree in the future though. They're seem pretty decent now from the research I've done but who knows...

What field are you hoping to get in to?

shrewsbury
04-24-2012, 09:39 AM
college doesn't guarantee a job in your field nor any job, but i think it is a must.
also student loans suck and so does other debts, but at least there are more possibilities.

i do disagree with one thing, there is no such thing as underemployed, you take what you can get and work from there.

many people on welfare won't get a job because it pays too little, that is crap. i have been working since age 15 and have worked some "crap" jobs in my time.
I got an education later than most, got in at an entry level, busted my butt and now have a great job, with great benefits, and good pay. my education helped me get in the door, but the rest was up to me.

AUTaxMan
04-24-2012, 10:12 AM
Most kids go to college to play. I have little sympathy for those who can't find work because they only managed to get a worthless BS in business management or a degree in human development and family studies. Want a job? Major in something hard like engineering, math, accounting, science. Want to play? Major in history.

pghin08
04-24-2012, 10:41 AM
Most kids go to college to play. I have little sympathy for those who can't find work because they only managed to get a worthless BS in business management or a degree in human development and family studies. Want a job? Major in something hard like engineering, math, accounting, science. Want to play? Major in history.

Haha, my history classes took up more of my time in college than all of my other classes combined. I agree that it's not the most fruitful degree (I graduated with a minor in history), but it's definitely not easy. It's a lot like math/econ where if you get behind, forget it, you're screwed.

Star_Cards
04-24-2012, 11:21 AM
I have a BFA in graphic design. I definitely "played" in college, but also there was value in it. I think a lot of this also shows that university education is mainly structured to make you take way more classes than what you would use in your chosen field. I get that a university education involves taking a well rounded course load, but it does show that the universities could benefit their students by adjusting their structure to help make them more job worthy once they graduate by being more focused. Although, in a bad job market more people tend to go to school or go back to school so why do they care. If a student gets a bachelor's degree and can;t find a job, they'll just come back and spend more money at the university.

mrveggieman
04-24-2012, 11:57 AM
Most kids go to college to play. I have little sympathy for those who can't find work because they only managed to get a worthless BS in business management or a degree in human development and family studies. Want a job? Major in something hard like engineering, math, accounting, science. Want to play? Major in history.


How is getting a business degree worthless?

themanishere
04-24-2012, 04:41 PM
How is getting a business degree worthless?

There's so much breadth these days that a general business Bachelor's doesn't do a whole lot for employers. It would really take an MBA and/or a concentration in accounting/finance/etc. to pull ahead somewhat. Supply chain (which is a part of what I'm doing in my program) is also on the rise.

People need more specialized skills and less generalized knowledge in a sense.

MadMan1978
04-24-2012, 10:38 PM
Now the real sad part of this whole story is the truth behind it. I have spoken with a number of College kids who plan to graduate next month. They are unable to find employment or work in jobs where they are great under employed. It is a sad state of affairs and reminds me of the Reagan years.

stlcardinalsfan
04-25-2012, 02:28 AM
Most kids go to college to play. I have little sympathy for those who can't find work because they only managed to get a worthless BS in business management or a degree in human development and family studies. Want a job? Major in something hard like engineering, math, accounting, science. Want to play? Major in history.


exactly!


partying wont get you a job.......let me rephrase that. partying wont get you anywhere.

peopel go to college and waste money on careers with no future. they dont take in consideration all the other people with the same major as them and how many people will be looking for a job just like them.

take me as an example. i am majoring in historic preservation......only 7 colleges nation wide offer that and many of the classes only have 15-20 students. thats aprox. 140 students each year when graduated looking for a job in that field.......thats small compared to 6 billion.

mrveggieman
04-25-2012, 09:16 AM
exactly!


partying wont get you a job.......let me rephrase that. partying wont get you anywhere.

peopel go to college and waste money on careers with no future. they dont take in consideration all the other people with the same major as them and how many people will be looking for a job just like them.

take me as an example. i am majoring in historic preservation......only 7 colleges nation wide offer that and many of the classes only have 15-20 students. thats aprox. 140 students each year when graduated looking for a job in that field.......thats small compared to 6 billion.


If you don't mind me asking what type of work do you plan to do with your degree?

stlcardinalsfan
04-25-2012, 03:30 PM
If you don't mind me asking what type of work do you plan to do with your degree?


historic preservation program is for students who want to pursue careers in preservation of the built environment, historic site administration, archives or museum management.

Star_Cards
04-25-2012, 03:55 PM
weighting in on the under employed term...

I think it's possible to be under employed but I see where shrewsbury is coming from. I think shrewbury sees that term as a complaint by the person with the job and that's not always the case. One can have a masters and have a job flipping burgers and be under employed and also be glad to have a job.

AUTaxMan
04-25-2012, 03:59 PM
There is a lot of underemployment in the legal field. Kids getting out of law school who would have gotten a high paying job at a national or regional firm 5 years ago are often ending up at smaller firms that pay less. The ones who would have ended up at the smaller firms are ending up at low paying DAs offices, working in government, or are out on their own. There just aren't as many jobs to go around as there used to be.

AUTaxMan
04-25-2012, 04:00 PM
historic preservation program is for students who want to pursue careers in preservation of the built environment, historic site administration, archives or museum management.

Sounds like a heavily bearded profession.

shrewsbury
04-25-2012, 04:31 PM
There is a lot of underemployment in the legal field. Kids getting out of law school who would have gotten a high paying job at a national or regional firm 5 years ago are often ending up at smaller firms that pay less. The ones who would have ended up at the smaller firms are ending up at low paying DAs offices, working in government, or are out on their own. There just aren't as many jobs to go around as there used to be.

not to start a bunch of crap, but

how is this underemployment?

fewer higher paying jobs, does not mean someone is getting less than they deserve. maybe less than they wanted or thought, but you are still employed in your profession, and the DA doesn't have an easy, unskilled job.

pghin08
04-25-2012, 04:46 PM
Sounds like a heavily bearded profession.

Almost did a spit take reading this.

TheTGB
04-25-2012, 06:07 PM
I was, and to an extent, still am underemployed.

I have my Bachelor's in Criminal Justice and Criminology. For the last year I was working as a building security guard with people who don't have any college education and some who didn't even graduate high school while barely making above minimum wage.

Currently, I'm still not using much of my degree sitting in a room monitoring alarms around the country.

Right now my goal is to move up into the Investigations area of my company as that would be perfect place to be for the beginning of my career. But I'm going to have to work my off for it and it may take awhile.

People with a college education now (more than ever) need to work from the bottom instead of having the jobs directly handed to them. Experience is paying more than education right now. But you can only get so far with experience. That's where the degree comes in handy.

stlcardinalsfan
04-25-2012, 10:17 PM
Sounds like a heavily bearded profession.


lmao the historic preservation admin here at college dosnt have a beard ;)

they say its half and half

Star_Cards
04-26-2012, 11:16 AM
not to start a bunch of crap, but

how is this underemployment?

fewer higher paying jobs, does not mean someone is getting less than they deserve. maybe less than they wanted or thought, but you are still employed in your profession, and the DA doesn't have an easy, unskilled job.

I agree that working in the field and making less money than 5 years ago wouldn't count as underemployed for me. That's more of a product of the economical climate of the given field. For me, underemployed would mainly be someone working in a position for less pay and where their qualifications, training and knowledge outweigh that of the position.

AUTaxMan
04-26-2012, 12:57 PM
For me, underemployed would mainly be someone working in a position for less pay and where their qualifications, training and knowledge outweigh that of the position.

The lower paying legal jobs are usually much less sophisticated and don't require as refined of a skill set. Not all law jobs have an equal degree of difficulty and not all lawyers are of equal intelligence.

Star_Cards
04-26-2012, 02:15 PM
The lower paying legal jobs are usually much less sophisticated and don't require as refined of a skill set. Not all law jobs have an equal degree of difficulty and not all lawyers are of equal intelligence.

ah, makes sense. I was reading that they just had to work in the same position for smaller firms that just paid less. I didn't read it that they were taking jobs that were typically for lesser qualified people.

*censored*
04-28-2012, 02:18 PM
For the record to go with my earlier post, I was a journalism major, double minored in history and music.

Journalism is, unfortunately, a dying profession. With the likes of Twitter, Facebook, Examiner, and personal PR managers for everyone with the slightest bit of fame, no one needs to go out to find and report the stories. News sources can sit back and let it come to them.

My wife is starting a small bakery business out of our home and we're considering trying to move to my hometown to open an actual storefront with it. I'm working as a sports broadcaster, and even that it going by the wayside, at least as a paid profession in the lower leagues. And if you want to make it higher, you have to be willing to do a lot of things unrelated in any way to broadcasting. Teams want a marketer who can broadcast, not a broadcaster who can market. I'm not a marketer.