College graduations are happening all over the United States. Families are celebrating the accomplishments of loved ones, and young people are anticipating a new future ahead of them. But with the current economy, what does this future realistically look like?
Research now shows that about half of men and women that recently graduate college are underemployed or unemployed. (Underemployed workers have jobs that don’t require degrees or higher education, like being a server at Starbucks). Many college-educated individuals are now turning to jobs like waitressing just to pay the bills. Some even move back in with Mom and Dad to save the little money they have.
The value of a Bachelor’s degree is diminishing, and in 2011, the number of job prospects for those with a Bachelor’s degree sank to the lowest number in more than ten years.
Predictably, the type of Bachelor degree has a large impact on the ability to find work after school. Students who majored in humanities, art history, and philosophy are graduates who are very unlikely to be able to find work in their own field. On the other hand, those with teaching, nursing, computer science, or accounting degrees are those who are most likely to find a job.
Students are left with a competitive job market, fewer job offers, and many times large student loans to repay. Richard Freeman, a Harvard economist, took notice that the amount of student debt in the U.S. has now grown to more than one trillion U.S. dollars.
These numbers are discouraging and many might wonder how worth a college degree really is in such a tough economy, especially when American graduates need to compete in a global market. One writer says the “growing ubiquity of bachelor’s degrees…could make them more commonplace in lower-wage jobs but inadequate for higher-wage ones”.
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