Thursday, January 5

The Young, Educated and Unemployed

Today, I go back to school. In honor of that depressing mood, here's a depressing post. 




I recently listened to an NPR article on American college students and their job search. This is a topic that I'm sure you've heard at least a little about no matter where you are. For the eleven minute article, see NPR, here. Here's my take on it.

I'm a graduating senior in college and I'm not exactly sure if I'm going to grad school... but a getting a job is definitely in my future. I'm surrounded by many friends who are definitely working after school and scrambling to find jobs so I find this very interesting. While most of my friends are business majors, I thought I'd still talk about choosing a major because a lot of bloggers are still in high school or have just started at a university. There's a continuum between doing what you love and doing what you can support yourself with.The NPR article tells you pretty straight: it's the more technical fields that are in demand. The most popular majors include psychology, journalism and literature.Yet, it is in these majors where jobs can be most difficult to find. On the other hand, a major like actuarial sciences is very low in desirability and very high in demand. One of the most poignant and new pieces of information I learned is that a "bad" major in a "good" school can still set you back in your career.

Encouragement can set you back too. Parents who tell their kids that if they study hard, they can do anything... aren't exactly right. You have to study hard at the right things. Professors, advisers and recruitment officers continue to tell kids that they will find success as long as they work hard are disillusioning their students. Students like to listen to those who tell them what they want to do; not those who tell them to do that hard boring stuff.

Lastly, TEDtalks are also misinforming you. I'm not a fan of TEDtalks myself (in fact, I take a little pleasure in bringing them down, so take my words with a grain a salt) but many of my friends are. My friends are inspired by TEDtalks in searching for their future careers but NPR talks about how TEDtalks do not give an accurate picture of the jobs really out there. TEDtalks make it seem like the perfect job is just waiting for you. Students, in turn, are waiting for the perfect job. What's wrong with waiting, though? Oh... Bills, loans, interest, defaulting, credit. Just that.

This last bit really resonates with what I see in the blogging world. I see so many successful etsy shop owners, successful bloggers and fashion designers and stylists that sometimes, I feel like I just want to do that instead.

23 comments:

  1. We just came across your blog & we're now following! Just wanted to drop you a comment to wish you the best of luck with all of your ventures. :)

    Visit our blog sometime & follow back if you'd like to keep in touch! We'd love to hear from you.

    Jayme & Mendi @ Her Late Night Cravings

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  2. I think you just described moi with the title of this post. I'm possibly in a very different situation from yours because I have an MA, which is much more unemployable especially with my concentration, but all around, the job market is still crap. My advice? if you aren't sure of what you'd really want to do still, don't go to grad school just yet. That may just be a few wasted years where you could be exploring jobs and avenues you would like to immerse yourself in later on.
    Cheers and ♥ laura
    the blog of worldly delights

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  3. 100% agree. I majored in Biology thinking I would go to graduate school. When I decided to forgo grad school, you'd think a science degree would still get me a job but nope. I had to play up my chem minor to get a job - no one wanted a bio major. Thank goodness for chem!

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    1. That's really depressing. Bio is definitely supposed to be a major that guarantees you a job!

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  4. i wish i took something better in school, so unhappy with my job now, doing some serious job hunting again

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  5. Very true - don't just study hard, study smart. Learn an actual skill versus getting some easy degree. Good luck with grad school! You must be very dedicated.

    http://www.thegirlieblog.com

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  6. I have a BA in English and I'm broke as a joke and I have a crap job. If only I would've known back in the day when I was in college!

    Mabel
    Mabel Time

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  7. Woof, this is so true. It's impossible to find a good job right out of school and honestly I really think that old adage is true - it's not WHAT you know, it's WHO you know.

    I had to work two jobs for a year after graduating with my master's, but I got the first one because I made a good impression as an intern and I got the other because a friend knew someone who worked there.

    Now, a year removed from a master's degree (in the social sciences, mind you), I have ONE very good fulltime job in my field with a good salary and benefits. Don't despair if you have to work like a dog for awhile...it all pays off if you have the initiative.

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    1. I read your answer, but I am so distracted by the "Woof" you put in front!

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  8. You'll make the right decision Aki. It's important to do something you love or you'll be miserable. But sometimes what we love doesn't help pay for all things. What each person needs is different. Evaluate what YOU want.

    http://averysweetblog.com/

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  9. We are in the same boat my dear. I will be starting school again next week finishing my last semester and than will be worrying about bills. Sigh, oh to be an adult!

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  10. i know exactly what you mean.i am in my last semester(our B.A is for a 3 years duration) and i am so paranoid of being unemployed.i have to get a P.G degree that's for sure.but even with that I don't know what will happen.if i am even good enough for a job i think i am good enough for.you get the drift right?

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  11. I would love to be a successful full-time blogger. That's the dream. How accessible is it? I'm not sure, but I am willing to try while I also pursue a job in the career world and work toward my Masters degree. It makes for one busy and stressful life.

    http://www.glamkittenslitterbox.com/
    Twitter: @GlamKitten88

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  12. I totally connect with what you're saying, as a college student I'm worried everyday that there won't be any jobs waiting when I graduate. Being an adult is stressful!

    xo Gillie
    http://grassettagillie.blogspot.com

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  13. I completely understand you with this post. I would absolutely love to be a full time successful blogger as my job - it is one of my dreams. It's definitely difficult, but I think all the hard work will pay off one day.

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  14. you never know where you're going to end up but it's totally okay. and even if you start one job you can always change. i know it seems like a lot of pressure coming out of college, but honestly, enjoy being young and experimenting in the work force. especially when you just have to take care of you and not provide for a family :) think of it as an adventure. it'll make it less stressful!

    spinning-threads.blogspot.com

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  15. You're spot on when you said "you have to study hard at the right things'. Well written and thought-provoking post, its the same here in SA, theres a high demand for engineers and the technical careers, but journalism and creative careers are the hardest to find jobs in

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  16. love it! good ideas a much fun!

    http://paquetevistasbien.blogspot.com

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  17. very smart, following you now, will you follow back?
    http://aprettylife13.blogspot.com/

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  18. Very interesting post, unfortunately that is the case right now almost everywhere with finding a job with what can support you and what you actually like to do. I actually majored in psychology because it was just a very interesting subject for me, but I never planned to go into psychology after I graduated. I did end up finding a job, but it had almost nothing to do with my degree and almost everything to do with connections and good timing, I was lucky to have friends and coworkers who recommended me for jobs.

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  19. thanks for the comment in my blog :)
    I really enjoyed reading your article although I have already worked for almost four years straight now and university time is over. which doesn't mean I don't have schoolings and stuff like that. I have learnt a lot during my work years :)

    Maiken/
    Maikeni blogi - part of me

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Thanks for your comments!