With graduation day quickly approaching, many college seniors may be wondering whether the United States’ recent economic gains will have a positive impact on their ability to find a job after receiving their diplomas.
The answer? Maybe. Although the Class of 2013 is facing an unemployment rate of 7.7 percent – decidedly better than the 8.3 its peers faced in 2012 – the unemployment rate of recent college graduates is still higher than it was prior to the 2007-2009 recession, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
However, college graduates have a much better chance of finding jobs than Americans who only hold high school degrees. In fact, people with bachelor’s degrees have approximately half the unemployment rate of high school graduates, according to The Atlantic.
For the Class of 2013, this is certainly welcome news, particularly since 236,000 new positions were added in February, USA Today reported. That’s 76,000 more jobs than economists projected.
Although the unemployment rate certainly has an impact on recent college graduates’ abilities to find jobs, many college seniors and young alums are finding that work and internship experience also play a significant role.
“If you’re willing to put in the work, it’s not going to get you a job if there isn’t one available, but my school helps us be optimistic about finding something,” Jessica Boyd, a senior at Haverford College, told USA Today.
Future college graduates may also be able to improve their job prospects by ensuring that they choose majors that will help them find employment in an expanding field. For example, the healthcare sector is growing much faster than the national economy and is expected to add 5.6 million new jobs by the year 2020, The Huffington Post reported.
All in all, the employment outlook for new college graduates is much brighter than it has been in recent years.