Updated: 10/22/2013

 

" The unemployment rate for 16-24 year olds in the U.S. is now higher than in 1948, when the government first began to keep records."
-Business Week


Finding A Job Today

  • Although by October, 2013 there were signs that the job market for college graduates was picking, overall, the job market is worse than it has been for decades.

  • It was reported in April, 2012 that 53% of college graduates were either unemployed or underemployed -- a percentage that had been steadily increasing for a decade.

  • At the same time, many U.S. employers haven't been able to find qualified young people from the United States to fill vacancies in technical areas.

  • Unable to find jobs, many people are enlisting in the military. Others are starting graduate degrees. Going to law school is now considered a bad option. That profession has been especially hard hit.

  • However, even though those with masters and doctorates may earn salaries significantly above those with bachelor's degrees, graduate school is not a good financial investment if you have go deeply into debt.

  • TV stations are laying off employees. Seasoned TV anchors with decades of news experience (and million-dollar salaries) are being let go.

In general, the four best areas for prospects of employment are:

  • nursing
  • teaching
  • accounting
  • computer science

The worst college majors for prospects of employment are:

  • anthropology
  • philosophy
  • art history
  • humanities
    " Today, 94 percent of college students borrow money to pay college tuition, twice the percentage of a decade ago. For most graduates paying back this debt without a good paying job, which few can find in the current economy, is almost impossible."

>> Could there possibly be any good news for broadcasting students in all of this?

Yes, a little.

  • The high-salaried employees that are being let go are being replaced by young, bright broadcasting graduates with limited on-the-job experience but at much lower salaries.
     
  • Cable and satellite television continue to expand. Plus, outlets such as Netflix and Amazon are now producing their own programming.

Education and Unemployment

In terms of starting salaries college graduates are doing significantly better than those who don't finish college -- and that economic difference continues to widen.

If you look at families headed Education and Employmentby someone without a college degree, their income last year in real terms was below that of a comparable family in 1973. For this segment of the population employment opportunities have been getting worse.

Some jobs are being created for non-college young people, but most are low-paying jobs that do not offer health care benefits.


There is detailed advice on getting and holding onto a job here.

 

International Telecommuting

There is an acute shortage of U.S. graduates in computer science and engineering, and employers are being forced to look outside the country for qualified workers.

 In addition to hiring many more immigrants, many U.S. employers are hiring foreign workers in their native countries and letting them "telecommute" to work via the Internet.

One U.S. company representative said, "It's not about the money [wages], we just can't find young Americans who are qualified to do these jobs."

 

Your Economic Future

In just a few short years the country has gone from having the greatest tax surplus in history to the greatest deficit in history. This is bound to have implications down the road. For example, there is concern about the future of Social Security and Medicare.

Given these realities, the old motto, "The future belongs to those who prepare for it," is particularly appropriate.


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