Many recent college graduates are either jobless or underemployed. Graduating from high school, American students are looking at options and choosing a career path. Science and technology are changing so rapidly that many students question what types of jobs will still be available when they graduate. College students are stuck in a limbo - talents and training sometimes do not offset experience.
Times are tough and the job market is tight. The National Center for Educational Statistics reports, “In the fall of 2013, a record 21.6 million students are expected to attend American colleges and universities, constituting an increase of about 6.2 million since fall 2000. During the 2012–13 school year, colleges and universities are expected to award 937,000 associate’s degrees; 1.8 million bachelor's degrees; 756,000 master's degrees; and 174,700 doctor's degrees.”
What a wonderful treasure trove of brilliant minds, freshly honed, full of energy and ready to “ tackle the world.” Does this year’s graduating class have the dedicated researcher that will find the cure for cancer or the brilliant young computer genius that will impact our world with innovative technology? A college degree does not guarantee success. New graduates might ask, “Of all the millions of people that are also graduating the same time as I am, will I be able to compete and stand out? More importantly, will I succeed?”
Anna Quindien replies, “When you leave college, there are thousands of people out there with the same degree you have; when you get a job, there will be thousands of people doing what you want to do for a living. But you are the only person alive who has sole custody of your life.” CNN News reports, “This year's college graduates are being offered more jobs and fatter paychecks. Members of the Class of 2012 are being offered median starting salaries of $42,569 -- up 4.5% from last year, a new report from the National Association of Colleges and Employers shows.” The CNN report further states, Meanwhile, they have more jobs to choose from. Employers expect to hire 10.2% more graduates this year than they did last year, according to NACE's survey of 160 employers. These employers have posted 15,767 job openings for college graduates this year -- up about 10% from the 14,341 that were posted for the Class of 2011 and more than triple the mere 5,174 job postings for the Class of 2010.
Unfortunately, worldwide many new graduates will face considerable difficulty finding gainful employment that utilizes their knowledge: their eagerness doesn’t offset their lack of experience. In a June 13, 2013 news article, Yahoo Finance reports, “About 9.12 million students took China's college entrance exams this year, while 6.99 million new graduates are facing intense competition.”
KentWired.com reports, based on data from the Census Bureau’s Current Population Survey, recent college graduates are stuck in limbo — big time. Nearly 53.6 percent of graduates with a bachelor’s degree under the age of 25 last years were either jobless or underemployed. The Atlantic reported, “Recent graduates are now more likely to work as waiters, waitresses, bartenders and food-service helpers than as engineers, physicists, chemists and mathematicians combined.”
KentWire.com goes on to report. “This problem does not seem to have as much effect on graduates of the sciences or other technical fields, which fared best in the job market. The reason why so many math and science folks are getting good jobs is because technology has taken over the world,” said Ryan McNaughton, career counselor at Career Services at Kent State. He said all the money is being put into technological skill sets.” “For the real liberal arts majors, it is rare that you come across someone who simply has a history degree or an undergrad in philosophy anymore,” McNaughton said. “It is incumbent upon them to then go on to the next level to get a master’s degree, sometimes a doctorate, and go from there.”
At the forefront of Internet technology since its inception, Tej Kohli founded Grafix Software, a privately held company in 1990 to offer turnkey solutions to E-Commerce challenges. Headquartered in San Jose, Costa Rica, Grafix Software is known around the world for its diverse range of services including campaign management, search engine optimization, creative web design and more.
Commenting on why businesses need to give recent college graduates employment opportunities in spite of their lack of experience, Ted Kohli states, “I believe that harnessing the power and ideas of young people is the key to business and economic success. Business is driven by technology and younger people – who have never known a world without computers and who will have completely different expectations from their ageing parents. When we consider that when NASA first sent a man to the moon, it had less computational power available to it than an average Western student has in their laptop bag, we understand how vast the change has been, and how inspiring the possibilities could be. As fresh thinkers with new ideas, courage and confidence, young people play an important role in any business. Shutting out their voices because they lack experience is a big mistake for any company that wants to achieve longevity. Trying to force them to fit your mold damages your prospects and theirs.”
By: Marlene Affeld