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Do you think it will be easy for new college graduates to find higher-paying jobs?

Asked at Jefferson's Restaurant, 743 Mass. on April 26, 2005

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Photo of Amity File

“No, because I’ve had a hard time finding one, and I graduate next month. I’m going to California for another degree.”

Photo of Adam Wheeler

“I couldn’t give an opinion about other fields, but it will be extremely easy for those with pharmacy degrees. I think the reputation of the school really helps.”

Photo of David Doeren

“No. I’ve been looking. You can find them, but they are not in desirable fields.”

Photo of Ashley Volton

“I think it depends on what your field is. Technology degrees will do well, but other than that, it will be tough.”


Jayhawk226 12 years, 8 months ago

1st post today.....?

2 years ago, when I graduated, I would have taken any salaried position with benefits--I couldn't even find a teaching position in my teaching field.

I am in my first year teaching and didn't care what my salary was, I just wanted a salaried position badly!

Topside 12 years, 8 months ago

It is really difficult to find a decent job today. Stay in school and get a masters degree if you even want a chance to earn over 40K a year (MDs, pharmacists, and Lawyers Excluded). I wish the economy would come around so some of these baby boomers would get out of their coushy jobs so I could get one.

PS- Stay away from an environmental science degree it will lead no where. Trust me.

shawn1040 12 years, 8 months ago

I just graduated from KU with a degree in computer science in 2004, and there are NO jobs that start off paying $51K. Kansas is saturated with unemployeed Sprint engineers, so if you want that kind of salary you have to move away from here!

PS - Stay away from computer science unless you want to move to India and make $4/hr ;-)

craigers 12 years, 8 months ago

Sometimes it depends. At the end of 2003 everybody was saying how bad the job market was, but me and a buddy of mine got a job that paid upper 30s right after we graduated. We both have business degrees and I have an Accounting major as well. You definitely can't be picky because sometimes the companies pick you and don't give you a great salary at first, but if you choose them and do great work, then the next year they seem to take care of you. Don't be picky and pursue a job, don't just send resumes and I think the graduates will be pleasantly suprised by the result.

Liberty 12 years, 8 months ago

There is currently a collapse of the middle class in this country. Only low level jobs and high level jobs. This is due to outsourcing and NAFTA and GATT and open borders with Mexico destroying the job market in the USA. The message from shawn1040 tells you that the computer field has unemployeed Sprint engineers that have saturated the market in Kansas. (This is because the word was out 10 years ago that the computer field had all the jobs, so it became way over saturated.) So now the people are hurding into college degrees thinking they can get a job that way. Then that field is saturated too. If you look at a stock chart of IBM, it pretty well tells the story. Microsoft looks similar. Gm looks similar. Ford looks similar.

raven 12 years, 8 months ago

I agree that it depends on what you consider a "higher paying job" I had not trouble finding my job and it pays in the lower 30's. I was thrilled and found this to be a wonderful salary. Personally, I consider this a higher paying job was have been very happy here. I think most students are kidding themselves if they think they can get an undergrad and start out making in the 50's. As long as they are realistic they should be fine.

Topside 12 years, 8 months ago

craigers stumbled through the one hole in the wall that is the crappy job market. Accounting. I have known several guys and gals from college that were accounting majors and landed positions just as described. But, since now everyone knows it is one of the best fields left everyone is going to get an accounting major and in five years you won't be able to find work as an accountant either.

ku_kris 12 years, 8 months ago

So macon, are you saying that if someone posts on this board more than once per day, then chances are that person is either unemployed or is someone that is a flunky-loser stuck in a dead end/low-paying worthless job??

Ceallach 12 years, 8 months ago

In today's market having a degree is not enough. Employers have learned the hard way that all degrees, even in the same field, are not equal. It is difficult to graduate and move immediately into a "position." Some face many years working at a "job."

The degree is usually necessary to get one through the critical first "qualified applicants" cut. After that I know many factors separate the jobs from the positions. Community service and activities related to civic literacy add points to the individual. Companies have become very PR conscious. At KU the University Career Center is a great resource for students and alums. An applicant must be educated in more than books.

Employers have learned to give themselves some time (the first year spoken of in an earlier post) to see the individual behind the resume. Creative resume writing is very trendy, but the most successful students have shaped themselves and not just their resume.

I have worked with a large number of students, many of whom still keep the staff informed about where they are and how they are doing. Some of the best and the brightest have struggled while other have succeeded.

So I say NO, it is not easy and a student should not assume that the paper will guarantee success.

raven 12 years, 8 months ago

Macon: I think we all have our different reasons for being able to post on this board more than once a day. I don't think it means we are lazy/in a dead-end job or anything negative. I can't speak for all but I know that is not the reason I am able to. What about you?

Jayhawk226 12 years, 8 months ago

I guess it's a healthier alternative than taking 50 smoke breaks a day by posting on here, right?

raven 12 years, 8 months ago

Bugmenot: What did you major in? I certainly did not have the same major but also had no trouble finding a job!

Todd 12 years, 8 months ago

I think high paying job means that you will gross more than the median income for your area. I went to engineering school at KU and I have to tell you the degree alone isn't a ticket to $$$. Just like any other field you won't last long if you are just in it for the money. That being said, the people that actually were suited for engineering did quite well easily getting the average salaries you see in LJworld. I'm still in the field and we start software engineers at $50-55k depending on their background. And yes, we do interview them to see if they know their stuff and won't be giant A-holes to work with.

Also, if you aren't willing to move you are toast from the get go. Don't blame the global job market or Sprint layoffs... it's your fault. Nothing is handed to anyone, never was. If you want someone to hold your hand and make promises to you join the service. (miltary)

ive_got_my_ascot_n_my_dickie 12 years, 8 months ago

Plenty of jobs on Monster and CareerBuilder. I recently got a technology job in KC that starts at $55k/year. Job opportunities are out there. They won't come to you, you need to go to them.

bugmenot 12 years, 8 months ago

Todd: Yep, good guess. Very competitive to get into anymore, but once your in it's not too bad. I have a couple more ambitious friends who lucked into very great careers making upper 100's off of almost no college degree, but I wanted some kind of degree where I knew that I had multiple good paying jobs when I got out of college.

ms_canada 12 years, 8 months ago

ceallach - I left you a note on the end of yesterdays line.

Liberty 12 years, 8 months ago

I think a better way to avoid the corporate 'matrix' and the non-secure corporate position and make better use of your degree or experience, is to start your own business in a location that it is needed, and avoid the things that Consumer1 very intelligently listed as downfalls to a corporate position. Since the average corporate job lasts about 3-7 years and many want you to move or be on the road. (Who are they trying to fool that this is security and with all those hard sayings trying to make you feel worthless because you have difficulty getting one of these positions in the "matrix or Egypt"?) Why not start your own business making good use of your education/talents or experience and find what you can do best and leave the 'matrix' behind. Enjoy life because it is too short to waste much time with today's global disloyal USA corporations that only want cheap educated labor. You never really get ahead working for someone else (because you are always trying to find your next career to support your family [if you still have one]) unless you are already at or near the top and can't be outsourced and have an enjoyable work environment in your current postion/job.

Linda Aikins 12 years, 8 months ago

Sure - if they don't want to work in Lawrence.

TheBowman 12 years, 8 months ago

Here is a sad reality: you have earned a degree, but so have a million other people just like you.

And you're afraid you're not going to find a job in your field? Don't be afraid--accept it.

You folks been watching the news and reading the paper over the last four years?

Yes, you have leveraged yourself thousands of dollars in debt to get an education and you want it pay off, but when great powers in this country and the world have stripped mined the job market and the economy, you take what you can get.

That's all I have to say about that....

Ceallach 12 years, 8 months ago

What do you think? Have students been well served by the promotion of "formal" over "vocational" education after high school?

Fangorn 12 years, 8 months ago

"I have a great career. I make close to 40, and increasing, work at my job four days per week, great benefits, many holidays off (paid), work with a great group of people, etc." Con1, I'm currently in the job market. Is your company hiring? :))

"Higher-paying" is a relative term, making the question less clear. When I was a hiring manager, I looked for more than a degree or even a particular skill set. I sought candidates who also displayed a good work ethic. We could train a person in our processes. But if they'd reached adulthood without knowing how to show up for work on time, get along with co-workers, or recognize and improve their weaknesses, we couldn't possibly teach them.

I've been in the military reserve for 16 years and have many active duty friends with even more time in service. And none of us has ever had someone hold our hand. I checked! ;) Some promises did get made, and a few were even kept! But I've experienced that in the civilian world as well.

ms_canada 12 years, 8 months ago

I believe that location is all important. And the field you are desiring to enter. My daughter has a Phd. in Communication Sciences and was living in a small city. Tried for over a year to find a position in her field and finally had to re-locate. She had to sell the house she loved, leave one son behind, and move far from her family. Devastating and traumatic, it was. But, we have to do what we have to do to survive. And that is what a lot of young graduates will have to consider when entering the job market. It is a fact of life. :-)

bugmenot 12 years, 8 months ago

It all depends on what field you go into. I just graduated last year, got job offers all over the country and even ones in Lawrence and the Kansas City area. Currently working in Shawnee making over 100 grand a year. While I know people who have multiple degrees that are worthless and they complain about not being able to find a job.

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