- Despite the uncertainty of the COVID-19 pandemic, college students and recent college graduates say they are somewhat optimistic about their job prospects, according to the results of a Barnes & Noble College Insights survey released July 7. However, salary and college debt are their primary concerns.
- More than half of recent grads (56%) surveyed said they have confidence in finding a job in their chosen career path, yet 24% said they are uncertain. That confidence may correlate with how well they believe college coursework has prepared them for life post-graduation, according to BNED. A total of 48% of student respondents said they believe they'll find a job two to six months after graduating. Meanwhile, 15% are optimistic they will find a job within one month.
- A key concern for 66% of students surveyed is the ability to find a job that matches their salary needs, according to BNED. More than half (58%) of respondents said they are worried about their ability to pay off college debt. An additional report by Barnes & Noble College Insights, "Conversations with Gen Z" found that one of the top issues the generation wants to address is the cost of college and its "negative effects on student financial well-being — during college and post-graduation."
Job salary and purpose were the top two criteria recent college graduates used to characterize a "good" job, according to recent research.
Of the recent college graduates surveyed for a recent Gallup Poll, 30% reported having a good job awaiting them upon graduation. Within six months, 26% of recent graduates said they found a good job and 17% said it took them more than a year. The "principal expectation of higher education," is to obtain a job, "particularly at a time when a college degree is more expensive than ever before," according Gallup.
Amid high unemployment due to the pandemic, some grads have found themselves competing for high-paying tech jobs, regardless of whether they're qualified. The number of available positions with "entry level" or "new grad" in the job title had decreased 68% from last year, a Glassdoor Economic Research study released June 22 revealed. Recent grads are most frequently applying to software engineering roles on the platform.
Along with a decrease in entry-level positions, employers are also offering fewer internship positions. A separate Glassdoor report found that internship hiring in April 2020 decreased by 39% compared to April 2019. However, there are companies like Microsoft that pivoted to virtual internships due to the pandemic instead of postponing or canceling them.