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College Seniors to Graduate with Brighter Job Prospects



By Chris Hassan
Posted May 15, 2012 08:01 AM

College graduates to enter a healthier workforce.
College graduates to enter a healthier workforce.
For many college students, senior year can be a time of mixed emotions, from sadness over saying goodbye to friends to excitement over the next phase of their lives. However, in recent years, concerns over the state of the job market have been on more than a few individuals’ minds.

Based on a new report from Rutgers University’s John J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development, only 49% of graduates from the classes of 2009 through 2011 landed a full-time position within a year of graduating. However, despite this number, there are those who have hope for the bachelor’s degree holders who will soon enter the workforce.

According to The Associated Press (AP), the job outlook for graduating seniors is better than it has been in four years. There are several reasons why these individuals are expected to face better prospects than the students who graduated since the economic downturn began. While others were struggling to find work, members of the class of 2012 could spend their college years preparing for the modern job market by participating in internships and networking.

Meanwhile, The Wall Street Journal reports that many Americans are quitting their jobs, which translates to more openings for graduates.

"It's just been such a dramatic change from what we saw in 2008," Mercy Eyadiel, executive director of employer relations at Wake Forest University, tells the AP. "It was a very bad, ugly situation."

While the national unemployment rate and hiring still have a ways to go before they reach pre-recession levels, spirits on campuses around the country are certainly brighter. For instance, Laura Mascari began her studies at the University of Delaware in the fall of 2008, but slowly grew nervous that her degree would be of no value after graduation. Today, however, she is the recipient of two job offers and plans to put her marketing degree to good use working for DuPont.

As many soon-to-be college graduates began their studies in a poor economy, they were able to take advantage of on-campus career services early, according to the AP. In fact, those who are just beginning their college experience recognize the importance of getting a head start on their post-graduation job search. During the 2008-2009 academic year, 46% of University of Chicago freshmen sought career advice. For the current school year, this number is expected to be exceed 80%.

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