Author Topic: Job outlook for recent grads  (Read 6439 times)

Ricky

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Job outlook for recent grads
« on: March 10, 2014, 10:37:27 PM »
Calling anyone aged 22-25... How did your job search go after graduation?

Although I have been working all through school and have a decent GPA I still worry about being able to find a job that pays well and is worth the switch from my current retail job.

All you hear nowadays is how millennials are moving back home and jobless. Moving back home is great for saving but the no job part...

Of course getting a traditional job isn't the only path to FI, but it's certainly the best way to separate work from personal life.

Saving for FI is impossible without a decent income!

Just curious to see if there are any young people that could chime in on this.

ethereality

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Re: Job outlook for recent grads
« Reply #1 on: March 10, 2014, 10:39:59 PM »
I moved back home to help my parents out and to save money, but as the job outlook is really bad in my small home town, I started my own business and am doing great now!

Ricky

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Re: Job outlook for recent grads
« Reply #2 on: March 10, 2014, 10:47:29 PM »
It's a bit discouraging to find that half of all working Americans made less than $27k in 2012.

I need leverage for my current job dammit! And it just doesn't exist...

Cwadda

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Re: Job outlook for recent grads
« Reply #3 on: March 10, 2014, 10:59:59 PM »
What's your major?

Ricky

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Re: Job outlook for recent grads
« Reply #4 on: March 10, 2014, 11:15:05 PM »
Management Information Systems. It's a very non technical degree and in my opinion would never land me a job straight into management...

Badass by 41

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Re: Job outlook for recent grads
« Reply #5 on: March 10, 2014, 11:38:16 PM »
Management Information Systems. It's a very non technical degree and in my opinion would never land me a job straight into management...

As ethereality mentioned in their reply, location can factor in quite a bit.  Understand you priorities, and if they are beyond "finding a job" (again, as ethereality mentions) that's awesome.  Just don't mistake your choices for forces outside your control (like "the job market").

I'm quite a few years out of school, so I concede things are different now.  However, I chose to move across the country in order to be in the right place to take advantage of opportunities I knew were out there.  For me, the hardest decision was leaving my entire extended family and the only life I had ever known.

I'm not saying everyones journey is similar, or that extreme. Though for me, had I not made that decision, it is entirely conceivable I would be making about $16/hr right now (15 years worth of $0.25 raises above the $12.75 I was making at the time) instead of the multiples of hundreds of thousands of dollars I'll make this year.

And I didn't even finish college.

In many ways, you make your own destiny.  I'm sure luck has something to do with it, or for some people an invisible hand, but I'm also certain that your choices weigh in as well. Your attitude, a drive to move forward, a desire to learn, acceptance of other perspectives, and not being a victim are all skills.  They are choices.  And they've paid dividends for me in multiples.

ethereality

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Re: Job outlook for recent grads
« Reply #6 on: March 11, 2014, 12:35:17 AM »
I sympathize. My major is even more "useless", though not to me. I have a humanities degree and a fine arts one, so both are stereotypically made fun of. But, I think my strength lies in being business savvy, so I've found a niche market to run my own business, and I make more than I can working traditional jobs. But, it comes at the cost of being in an area where I can meet other young people or have time to network professionally. And since I work for myself, I worry about making the jump to employment elsewhere if I choose to do so in a few years.

I'm a planner, so it helps to give myself time frames. For example, I have until August to have a more reasonable work/life balance (not work 60 hours+). I have until June to work in some type of professional networking (social or otherwise). It helps remind me that everything does come in phases and that I have control over my situation. In the meantime, I do my best to live happily off a minimum wage salary, and I save the rest, just in case, as I definitely don't want to take my current job for granted.

I wouldn't say I'm qualified to give any advice to anyone else my age as I'm still barely figuring things out as I go, but despite my laughed-at degrees, I found a way to provide a service that is irreplaceable and profitable.

The hardest part about graduating is making life decisions in this seemingly endless stretch of work life until retirement. There are days when I miss being able to say "I just gotta make it till the end of this trimester". I have to find new ways to mark goals and achievements (:

Sorry for the long winded answer! I graduated last June, if that helps any.

Nudelkopf

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Re: Job outlook for recent grads
« Reply #7 on: March 11, 2014, 12:36:53 AM »
I'm a teacher (22 years old). I did a 4 year maths degree, and then decided to switch to teaching (only 1 extra year at uni). Apparently there's an oversupply of teachers... But if you're good, then I think you'll get a job. I had a job before I graduated (like, 6 months before). (I started teaching full-time 2 months before I finished uni).

A lot of my peers from uni are whinging that they haven't got jobs. But I think they're probably just really bad teachers, so no one will hire them. I got head-hunted.. so.. I guess I'm a good teacher. At least, I look good on paper.

I also moved out to a rural town, because rent was cheap. And it's the same job, whether in the big city or in a rural town. I chose the place that lets me save the most :)

Anatidae V

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Re: Job outlook for recent grads
« Reply #8 on: March 11, 2014, 01:08:56 AM »
My partner finishes his bachelor's this year. It's 7 years since he started it. He's got a double in mechanical engineering and science (maths +physics, also did an honors year for the maths). Engineering jobs are typically applied for during the last year of study. At a careers expo he went to recently, several companies said they might not take in any graduates next year. Mostly companies similar to the one I work for.
Things don't look good, but like Nudelkopf said, being good in your field can make a big difference.
I got a "payrise" in my second year (two years ago) because the new intake was going to be paid more than us. Since then, we've received inflation once and nothing last year other than layoffs.

Nudelkopf, it must have felt great to be "headhunted", but what does that mean? How did people find out about you?

Nudelkopf

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Re: Job outlook for recent grads
« Reply #9 on: March 11, 2014, 01:20:32 AM »
Nudelkopf, it must have felt great to be "headhunted", but what does that mean? How did people find out about you?
Well, HR called me out of the blue and asked me to name a school which I wanted to work at.. And, so I told them, and I got it. And then I got a call from a school asking if I'd like to start work before I graduated - which I did. I guess it's knowing people, who want you. Networking :D

iwanttobelive

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Re: Job outlook for recent grads
« Reply #10 on: March 11, 2014, 10:07:39 AM »
In the US, job outlook for recent graduates is horrible based on my own and my peers experiences.

I've met lots in my situation in person. I'm seeing more and more people with the "bulletproof" STEM, engineering degree's being unable to find jobs in engineering and going back to their old jobs as cashiers/whatever.


Student loans: $35,000 - $400 a month payment (not getting paid)
Degree's: BS in Business Administration (Did lots of math/accounting thats why its a BS and not a BA)
Associates of Arts and Science Liberal Arts

About 10 years combined work experience by the time I graduated in retail/call centers. Was unemployed at time of graduating. Took 9 months to get any type of job what so ever, after going to endless job fairs, cold calling, going door to door, filling out online applications for work. Was unable to get an internship anywhere during school or after.

9 Months after graduating with my bachelors:
I'm currently doing manual labor in a warehouse for around $12K wage a year. A bunch of my coworkers similarly just graduated college and this was the only job they could find too. First and only job offer I've received out of college.


Still trying to network and applying for a second job and also something that my degree should open doors to, entry level and I've been unable to secure a second job. Getting told I don't have enough experience for every single thing entry level.

I'm pretty much able to afford food and transportation and my current bleak housing situation, thats it.
« Last Edit: March 11, 2014, 10:10:19 AM by iwanttobelive »

nereo

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Re: Job outlook for recent grads
« Reply #11 on: March 11, 2014, 10:33:25 AM »
It's a bit discouraging to find that half of all working Americans made less than $27k in 2012.

I need leverage for my current job dammit! And it just doesn't exist...
Hi Ricky

A few thoughts.  Judging from your original post I'm guessing you are at/about 22?
First: I'm curious about your statistic that "half of all working americans made less than $27k in 2012"  Statistics can be skewed greatly (for example, does that number include part-time seasonal workers, people under 18, etc) but the median household income in 2012 was just over $51k according to the US census bureau. That number includes dual-income households, but also single income, no income (retired/unemployed) etc.
Also, keep in mind that after adjusting for income parity 99% of the global population makes under $35k.

Second: broadly speaking, a person's earning potential increases steadily from their 20s until it peaks in their early 50s. 

Third: regarding your "need leverage" comment.  Leverage is something that's earned.  It comes about when you have skills or experience that are valuable to other businesses.  You mentioned that you have a very "non-technical degree" - in order to have better leverage figure out waht employers are looking for in your field and become very good at doing exactly that.  It might mean taking a few classes to learn a computer program (for me it's R and Matlab).  You won't get leverage just by wishing for it.

Forth: You have the greatest asset available for building wealth: time.  As a (single?) 20something every dollar you save away is worth more than $5 saved by someone in their mid-40s. And even with a job in the mid$20k range you can still find ways of saving $5000k+/year (e.g. enough to fully fund your IRA). When pay-raises come (and they will come if you build leverage - see above) you can save even more and suddenly be FI sometime in your 30s.

I'm barely over 30 but I wish I had the advantages that you have now
Good luck!

randymarsh

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Re: Job outlook for recent grads
« Reply #12 on: March 11, 2014, 10:35:43 AM »
Management Information Systems. It's a very non technical degree and in my opinion would never land me a job straight into management...

I'm a fellow MIS major and you should have no problem landing a job after graduation that pays more than 27K. Even my internship pays 30K a year, annualized.

Don't let the 27K stat scare you too much. The average American is not college educated and they're definitely not educated in an in demand field. They also don't read MMM.

windawake

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Re: Job outlook for recent grads
« Reply #13 on: March 11, 2014, 10:54:39 AM »
I graduated from undergrad in December 2009, which was a terrible time to be job searching. I ended up with two offers after graduation. I just graduated from grad school this year and have had no trouble finding jobs. I didn't intend to have a job this summer and just came across one which I got and then was extended through the fall. Then I left that part-time job for my current full-time job. I also had highly desirable assistantships during graduate school that subsidized the majority of my tuition every semester. I think there's a lot of talk about the job market being terrible, but as long as you put yourself out there and get out of your comfort zone, it's totally doable.

The job I found after undergrad I got through my brother's friend's mom. My mom happened to mention that I was job searching and this woman was willing to refer me for an opening. The first job I had during grad school was from emailing the Political Science department (my undergrad major) to ask if they needed teaching assistants (even though I was in the School of Public Health and it was a long shot). They were in dire need of teaching assistants and since I had a high GPA in undergrad, they hired me. My second job during grad school I found because I searched out professors who were doing research in areas I was interested in and contacted professors who had recently received funding. I had one professor who seemed interested so I met with him and his PM the summer before I started school, kept calling and emailing them, and they just happened to offer me a job right after my first job ended. After that professor moved to AZ I found my job through the summer/fall just by searching job boards through my school. My current job I also found searching job boards. I was applying for about 5-7 jobs per week when I started actually getting interviews.

After undergrad I was making $31k/year, but I didn't negotiate at all, I probably could have increased it if I'd known then what I know now. I'm currently making $53k/year with a master's degree in public health. If you're willing to move you should be totally set. Most of my friends after grad school have not had trouble finding jobs. I know it's a different market from just a bachelor's degree, but whether you succeed in finding a job is mostly based on your level of tenacity. I've never seriously doubted I would find a job, because I've always thought outside of the box for finding jobs and it's always worked out.

jfLip

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Re: Job outlook for recent grads
« Reply #14 on: March 11, 2014, 12:30:59 PM »
Ricky, I wish I majored in MIS!  I'm 25 and majored in Psychology with a terrible GPA (I spent my entire undergrad aimlessly taking classes to be a dentist).  My career path thus far:
  • 2011: B.S., Psychology
  • 2011-2013: Personal Trainer
  • 2013-Present: HR Assistant

I'm currently trying to transition into a Business Analyst/Consultant role and enrolled in a Business Analysis program through UC Berkeley's extension school.  I've been blessed with wise mentors that have taught me so much.  I've learned that you must create your own path and blaze your own trail despite everyone telling you what you should do.  It was pretty rough for me after graduation, as I had no plans or idea what to do, but in retrospect it's turning out for the best.

You should be able to get your foot in the door with an MIS degree.  Demonstrate you're eager to learn and do more than you're asked.  Everyone will tell you to "network."  What I've learned about networking is 1) talk to anybody and everybody, and be nice to them 2) listen to what others have to say about themselves (people love talking about themselves) and 3) share your future plans.  If you combine these things, people will want to help you out.

I suggest reading "What Color Is Your Parachute?"

Elaine

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Re: Job outlook for recent grads
« Reply #15 on: March 11, 2014, 12:39:56 PM »
I'm 26. Major in Writing. I graduated a year early (so 2008), worked in the service industry for two years before finding a professional job (for about 30k). Fast forward three years and I'm at 60k. I graduated at basically the worst possible time- and it still worked out ok. Be patient and be realistic. That's my only real advice.

senecando

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Re: Job outlook for recent grads
« Reply #16 on: March 11, 2014, 12:50:24 PM »
I graduated in 2011 with a degree that said just "Liberal Arts." I spent a year at Starbucks, doing some web work on the side. That year I made more than 27k (not by much), but I worked 6 or 7 days a week for the duration.

Then, a year working at a bar, continuing the web work for a few hundred dollars a month.

Now, I'm at my first salaried job.

mh1361

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Re: Job outlook for recent grads
« Reply #17 on: March 11, 2014, 02:28:15 PM »
Graduated in May 2013. Started an internship with a non-profit in January of 2013 and they hired me FT when I graduated. I was lucky enough to not have to go through an intense job search.

LibrarIan

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Re: Job outlook for recent grads
« Reply #18 on: March 11, 2014, 02:38:08 PM »
I graduated in December of 2010 with a degree in geology. At the time of graduation I was working at a library and they immediately promoted me to FT when I was out of school, garnering me about 27k/year at 22 years old.

I stayed there for a little while and then lucked into a computer programming job (~49k/yr) after I took an aptitude test on a whim and got an interview with an insurance firm looking for entry level IT people. Neither my work history nor my college degree assisted me here.

You might think I feel like I wasted 3.5 years (college) and a subsequent 1.5 years (FT library job). However, I hate my current job no matter the pay. Programming just isn't for me, but I'll do it until I find something else. I am 5 months out from getting my Master of Library and Information Science and, although there a lot of people with library degrees wandering around out there, I think my prospects look great. I have 6 years of working in libraries under my belt and pretty soon a MLIS and an internship at a respected library system (Cincinnati/Hamilton County). I think I'll be fine.

Other than that, my father decided to open his own business after being laid off and I have a feeling he is about to be rolling in dough. Maybe if things go south I can work for him.

MrCash

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Re: Job outlook for recent grads
« Reply #19 on: March 11, 2014, 02:47:44 PM »
I graduated in May 2013 with and aerospace engineering degree and had two job offers by August 2013.  Looking back, it didn't really take that long to get a job, but it sure felt like it at the time.  Lots of resumes were send out and lots of attempted networking.  It definitely helps to know people within an industry.  I also feel like my co-op experience and my study abroad definitely helped as well.

I rejected the first job offer in favor of the second one which provided a salary that was about 30% greater and with much better benefits.  The second job offer was much further away, but I will be shortening my commute in April.

Recon

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Re: Job outlook for recent grads
« Reply #20 on: March 11, 2014, 04:51:17 PM »
Also a May 2013 grad, signed my job offer in the fall of senior year (Nov. 2012).  Majors in supply chain management and finance - the job I ended up getting is $50K/yr in the SCM field.  Low cost of living area, too.  I was fortunate enough to attend a good enough school that all of my friends in business and engineering had jobs before graduation, but I know others who majored in liberal arts and still don't have a job.  Law school seems to be a common backup plan.

FWIW, my school had an online portal for companies to recruit on campus.  Almost everybody I know got a job through the portal or from an internship the prior summer.

ch12

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Re: Job outlook for recent grads
« Reply #21 on: March 11, 2014, 08:51:00 PM »
I'm 22. The job market honestly isn't that bad if you look in the right places and try to spread your net rather wide. I could have gone down the route of being a counselor in Memphis, recruiter in NYC, or a teacher in Indianapolis (that list may seem eclectic, but I'm qualified for any of those jobs, courtesy of my 4 majors and 2 jobs in college). The job I ended up accepting is in Madison and very remotely related to my work experience prior to graduation. I will say that it feels like all of my friends work for software companies, since they are the ones with money and expanding needs right now.

It's perfectly natural for you to wonder what you're going to do with your life. What you understand after you've found a spot is that everyone feels like that, almost regardless of age.




MrCash

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Re: Job outlook for recent grads
« Reply #22 on: March 11, 2014, 10:26:43 PM »

It's perfectly natural for you to wonder what you're going to do with your life. What you understand after you've found a spot is that everyone feels like that, almost regardless of age.

Yep.  Even though I'm currently taking my life in certain directions, I still don't know what I'm doing or if that's the direction I want to go in the future.  But I'm slowly figuring things out.

Joel

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Re: Job outlook for recent grads
« Reply #23 on: March 12, 2014, 09:08:44 AM »
I had a job lined up 1.5 years before graduation. Network, join a business fraternity, go to as many career fairs and recruiting events as possible, polish your résumé, and work on your people skills. There are plenty of job opportunities out there for graduates, you just have to be willing to go where the work is. Often times that may mean in a city different than where you grew up.