Highs and Lows

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Seems the world is full of bad news these days, on all fronts. War and terrorism abroad, unemployment and recession at home. It’s enough to drive a person to drink … if you could afford it.

But I’m steadfastly sticking to my optimism, putting faith in the cycle that dictates that what goes down must come up. We’ve seen flashes of blue skies over recent weeks and months, and those glimpses only support my hope-for-the-best philosophy.

The online job site Monster.com recently came out with a job trends report, and like the roller-coaster economy in which we’re now riding, there were highs and lows. Let’s take a look at the valleys first:

  • 53 percent of college students expect no job offers upon graduation, up from 23 percent in 2001.
  • 64 percent of schools surveyed expect to see fewer recruiters on campus.
  • The number of unemployed workers ages 20 to 24 hit a 10-year high in the six months ending in February 2003.
  • U.S. companies eliminated 560,000 high-tech jobs since 2000, 236,000 of those in 2002 alone.
  • 10 percent of U.S. technology workers are unemployed.Reaching for that drink yet? Please don’t. Here’s a peek at the peaks in the landscape:
    • 30 percent of employers plan to increase their 2003 spring/summer hiring plans, and 60 percent plan to maintain hiring levels. That speaks of a decline in the decline.
  • By 2010, the United States will have 10 million more jobs than workers to perform them.
  • 56 percent of employers consider work experience most important, but only 46 percent of college students have completed internships. This is great news for those of you with time under your proverbial belt.Studies like this are always fascinating, whether or not they have any real meaning. For instance, 61 percent of college students expect to live with their parents after graduation (the glass-is-half-empty side of things), but 46 percent of college students think they’ll earn their first million before turning 40 (the glass is half full now).

    I wish there was a grand message to sum all this up, but there’s not. I recently received a letter from a reader who went from a $90,000-a-year job to making $22,000, and I’ve also heard from readers who are doing great.

    Your career is like your life, a combination of opportunity, skill, luck, timing and circumstance. Do your best, and believe that something good is coming soon.

    Tim Sosbe

    Editorial Director

    tsosbe@certmag.com

     

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