One of the puzzlements in the ongoing analysis of America’s continuing high unemployment level is the ongoing fact that college grads’ 50% lower unemployment level from those not finding work as a whole persists even as the job-finders are showing a begrudging improvement at the current time.
In attempting to unravel this curious development, I found my own experience was an analogous answering base. In re-evaluating my 58 year-long business involvement in marketing/sales, top management, and lately as a business consultant and economic writer and analyst, the following points relate to the advantage of an undergraduate, post-graduate and even military experience as providing a singular advantage. In an excruciatingly tight job market, the following points summarize the benefits that even a general college business or literal arts degree provides. Although the following reflects my personal experience, it goes a long way toward determining the relatively low unemployment rate of today’s college graduates:
1) The ability to attain personal relationships with professors and fellow students during the basic four years that eventuate into post-graduate job search. Just expanding your circle of meaningful contacts during this period put college attendees on the right track for future job opportunities.
2) Even military contacts provided by the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps, (ROTC) widen the associations that can be made during the college years. This can lead to serving as officers in Army, Navy or Air Force, and opportunities beyond.
3) Most colleges have placement consultants, which open doors to alumni groups that all universities maintain. These include special segments such as communications, chemistry, business, engineering, law, and architects/engineers for starters. These open doors through these schools’ alumni memberships from universities that tend to favor graduates from their particular college or university.
4) Even entry level jobs provide a take-off point for advancement in a particular field or endeavor, which can translate into promotion, or better jobs with competitive organizations. In my case, posting a “situations wanted” ad in a large metropolitan newspaper provided me with a stepping stone with a larger company and higher pay, after they became aware of my combined university, military and brief experience in the field of advertising and marketing.
What it boils down to is that the formative years, normally ages 18-22, not only provide a broader-based overall educational experience at a time of life where such learning opportunities and contact-making can prove to be most critical, but are prior to getting into the real world of earning a living.
Although there is no guaranty to the outcome of diverse college experience, it certainly opens opportunities which would not be available in other aspects of endeavor during this segment of personal growth development. But the 3.9% unemployment of college graduates, compared to the 7.8% of unemployment in general could well be attributed to the experience here-in stated.
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