CollegeGrad.com Graduation Employment Survey
Only 52 Percent of the Class of 2002 Have Jobs by Graduation
48 Percent College Grad Unemployment Rate
Milwaukee, WI - Only 52 percent of new college graduates have already secured employment by graduation day, according to a survey of new college graduates conducted by leading Internet job site CollegeGrad.com. "Hiring for the Class of 2002 is down from 2001 and down significantly from previous years" noted Brian Krueger, President of CollegeGrad.com. "September 11th and the down economy have had lasting effects on this year's graduating class."
The survey results found that 52 percent of college graduates had accepted a job offer by graduation day, down from 65 percent in 2001. In addition, approximately 22 percent of college graduates plan to attend graduate school full-time, up from 18% in 2001.
The majors which had higher acceptance rates included Nursing, Education, Business and Engineering, while Fine Arts and Liberal Arts majors had acceptance rates lower than the average.
Available entry level positions had been increasing steadily for the past decade. However, this trend has reversed in the past two years. "For the past two years, there simply have not been enough entry level jobs available for all those graduating from college. The supply of jobs is shrinking, while the number of grads remains relatively constant," noted Krueger.
A college degree is no longer considered an automatic ticket to a job offer. "The current workforce has come to accept that layoffs and hiring freezes are part of the general economic cycle," said Scott Sprague, Staffing Manager at STMicroelectronics. "For recent college grads, this could mean they work for 5 years before getting their first great job. There is no guarantee that a good education locks-up a good job."
So what is a new grad to do? "Keep in mind that although the number of entry level jobs is down, the jobs are still out there--it will simply take longer to find them," was the encouraging message from Krueger. "New graduates need to be more flexible in looking for work--broaden out your definition of acceptable entry level work, look for work in new cities, consider working part-time or temping. Anything you can do to get your foot in the door will place you in the right position for when companies do move back toward growth in long-term hiring."
Nationally, colleges have reported declines of 40% in campus interviews and job postings this year. And many students may be employed, but have accepted jobs below what they would have accepted in years past. "My concern is with the lack of quality and the short-term prospects of the jobs that students have secured," stated Dr. Richard White, Director of Career Services at Rutgers University. "I suspect that there are more part-time, temporary and clerical jobs in the mix this year than in previous years." Jerry Houser, Director of the Career Development Center at CalTech also noted that "companies participating in on-campus interviewing and career days were significantly lower this year than last--about 40% lower due to 9-11 and DotComs tanking."
What about graduate school? "Consider graduate school only if it will truly enhance your ability to get an entry level job," recommended Krueger. "But don't use grad school to simply hide from a less than ideal job market. Instead, be prepared to put in the time and effort necessary to research and locate a job now. The jobs are there, if you know where to find them. And the Internet provides an excellent tool for broadening out your job search. Graduation marks the start of your full-time job search."
CollegeGrad.com is consistently ranked the #1 entry level job site on the Internet and is a leader in the field of entry level job search. Brian Krueger is President of CollegeGrad.com and author of the best-selling book for entry level job search, College Grad Job Hunter.
The survey was conducted nationally with more than 1,200 participants during the week of June 10-17.
Read more quotes from employers and career center directors throughout the U.S. More than 30 additional quotes are available online for building your news story.
NOTE: The information contained in these survey results may be reprinted in whole or in part as long as full attribution is given to CollegeGrad.com as the source of the information. This is an exception of our standard copyright policy for the material on this page only.
Brian Krueger is available for interviews with national TV, radio, magazines and newspapers as an industry expert on college/entry level hiring, as well as Internet job search.
Contact us for additional information.