No one needs you, Class of 2010

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<p>A more realistic perspective:</p>

New graduates are staring at some imposing statistics this year. EPI's report found that the jobless rate among college graduates under age 25 averaged 9 percent over the last year, compared to 5.4 percent in 2007, before the recession.


<p>Source: Job</a> prospects may be grim, but not hopeless, for new grads</p>

<p>That's obviously a downturn, but it is means that out of every 100 college grads, roughly 4 more will have a tough time finding a job compared to pre-recession numbers. </p>

<p>The 9 percent unemployment for college grads compares to a 22.5% unemployment rate for high school grads not enrolled in post-secondary education. See:<br>
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<p>So, tough as it is, that bachelor's degree more than doubles the chance of getting a job.</p>

So, tough as it is, that bachelor's degree more than doubles the chance of getting a job.


<p>Math does not work that way.</p>

<p>You're right - given that the cohort of people in that age group with college degrees is so small, the impact of a college degree is probably much more significant when you look at raw numbers. </p>

<p>That is, as of October 2009, among individuals age 16-24, there were roughly 188,000 unemployed (and more than 1.7 million employed) -- whereas the number of unemployed individuals in the 20-24 age range who were not enrolled in school actually exceeded the total number of employed college graduates. In the 16-24 age range, you are looking at a work force of 20 million, of which only 1.9 million (9.5%) have attained a bachelor's degree. When you consider the fact that the job seekers with college degrees are free to compete with the others for jobs that do not require a college degree -- whereas the nondegree holders can't compete for the jobs that do require a degree -- I think the college degree confers an even greater advantage. </p>

<p>One other note: it helps to be female if you are seeking a job -- but not when it comes to pay. The rate of unemployment among male college grads is twice the rate for females -- but the median salary for females is significantly lower. </p>

<p>Here's my source for employment figures:
Table</a> 2. Labor force status of persons 16 to 24 years old by school enrollment, educational attainment, sex, race, and Hispanic or Latino ethnicity, October 2009</p>

<p>For wage figures, see:
Fast</a> Facts</p>

<p>Thanks for the statistics, but I was more talking about the fact that 91% of college grads are employed compared to 77.5% of high school grads not enrolled in post-secondary education. This hardly suggests that a "bachelor's degree more than doubles the chance of getting a job."</p>

<p>Well, there are 10.3 million individuals age 20-24 not enrolled in school in the labor market, of which 1.8 million are unemployed. </p>

<p>There are 1.9 million college grads age 24 or under, of which 188,000 are unemployed. </p>

<p>So statistically, you've got 10 times as many unemployed young people who are not enrolled in school as unemployed college graduates. </p>

<p>In that market... do you want to be the person with a degree... or without?</p>

<p>Suppose you have a 91% chance of getting a job if you're a college grad and you have a 77.5% chance of getting a job if you're a high school grad not enrolled in post-secondary education. Would you say the college grad has double the chance of getting a job?</p>

<p>If we're going to talk about it, I'd also like to point out that there's not been control on any other variables. It's not anything you could draw any worthwhile conclusions from as to the value of a bachelors degree. Hence, there's no point in trying to draw statements saying one thing or another about the value of a bachelors degree based on this study, since we have no data from which to do so. We have more of a survey.</p>

<p>There's no "study" -- there are reports of statistics. </p>

<p>Of course it would be next to impossible to come to mathematical certainty about the value of the degree. You'd have to know all sorts of additional variables -- like how many jobs were available in what areas of the country and what types of jobs, etc. </p>

<p>But the point is that the article cited in the OP painted a very grim picture of prospects for the "class of 2010" college grads. </p>

<p>My point is that it's a whole lot better to be a 20-something member of the class of 2010 than to be a 20-something who is not in college. </p>

<p>That doesn't change the fact that the grads of 2010 face hard times -- but the article seemed to suggest that all the 2010 grads had just flushed $200 grand down the toilet, what with paying for college and all, since they were having a hard time finding a job.</p>

<p>My point is that with the high unemployment, that college degree is more valuable than ever -- you need every edge you can get in today's market. So I'm taking issue with the idea that recession & high unemployment negates the value of the college degree, just because its harder than usual for college grads to find a job. Any way you look at it, its significantly harder across the board for non-college grads to find work, and of course the college grads are also pretty much taking the highest paying jobs available for that age cohort.</p>

<p>All of what you just said is qualitatively intuitive ("it's better to have a degree than not have a degree"). It's just that your attempt to quantify it and justify the use of adjectives such as "significantly" when talking about how hard it is to get a job has essentially failed due to your faulty math.</p>



<p>A better way of expressing that would be that having a degree cuts your chances of NOT having a job in half (actually, it cuts it even more than that - 22.5% chance is cut to 9%)</p>

<p>"There's no "study" -- there are reports of statistics."</p>

<p>I misused the word "study" but the rest holds. Replace "study" with some word used to describe the information contained in the article and all further information which can be extracted from that. That's what I meant.</p>