Employment of College Graduates

5 years ago  •  By  •  0 Comments

This article and accompanying infographic (see end of this article) was written and illustrated by our friends at Open Colleges, Australia’s leading online educator. You can find out more about them by going to their website www.opencolleges.edu.au

College graduates who are aged 20 to 29 are employed in various industries. According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, Educational Services is the number one employer of college graduates within that age group. About 1 in every five or 20{c2bc4dcc82a24c7a0a4780d09ca51e05a889725c4a6e53b8bbcdcdf364f60b87} of all Bachelor’s Degree holder aged from 20 to 29 are employed in the Educational Services industry. Here is the distribution of Bachelor’s Degree holders across the various industries:

  • Educational Services 20{c2bc4dcc82a24c7a0a4780d09ca51e05a889725c4a6e53b8bbcdcdf364f60b87}
  • Health Care and Social Assistance 17{c2bc4dcc82a24c7a0a4780d09ca51e05a889725c4a6e53b8bbcdcdf364f60b87}
  • Professional and Business Service 14{c2bc4dcc82a24c7a0a4780d09ca51e05a889725c4a6e53b8bbcdcdf364f60b87}
  • Leisure and Hospitality 12{c2bc4dcc82a24c7a0a4780d09ca51e05a889725c4a6e53b8bbcdcdf364f60b87}
  • Wholesale and Retail Trade 10{c2bc4dcc82a24c7a0a4780d09ca51e05a889725c4a6e53b8bbcdcdf364f60b87}
  • All Other Industries 9{c2bc4dcc82a24c7a0a4780d09ca51e05a889725c4a6e53b8bbcdcdf364f60b87}
  • Goods-Producing 8{c2bc4dcc82a24c7a0a4780d09ca51e05a889725c4a6e53b8bbcdcdf364f60b87}
  • Financial Activities 7{c2bc4dcc82a24c7a0a4780d09ca51e05a889725c4a6e53b8bbcdcdf364f60b87}
  • Public Administration 3{c2bc4dcc82a24c7a0a4780d09ca51e05a889725c4a6e53b8bbcdcdf364f60b87}

These figures do not mean that all Bachelor’s Degree holders are having an easy time in finding employment. Based on statistics that appeared on Digest of Education from 2009 to 2012, the unemployment rate now for college graduates is higher than what it was more than 20 years ago. In fact the unemployment rate now for BA holders is 7.5{c2bc4dcc82a24c7a0a4780d09ca51e05a889725c4a6e53b8bbcdcdf364f60b87}. Here is the unemployment rate for comparative periods in the past:

  • 1990 BA Holder unemployment rate- 3.14{c2bc4dcc82a24c7a0a4780d09ca51e05a889725c4a6e53b8bbcdcdf364f60b87}
  • 2000 BA Holder unemployment rate- 4.96{c2bc4dcc82a24c7a0a4780d09ca51e05a889725c4a6e53b8bbcdcdf364f60b87}
  • 2008 BA Holder unemployment rate- 4.51{c2bc4dcc82a24c7a0a4780d09ca51e05a889725c4a6e53b8bbcdcdf364f60b87}

Many college graduates, even if they do not find work, end up being underemployed. Most of them find employment in Retail Sales. In fact 24.6{c2bc4dcc82a24c7a0a4780d09ca51e05a889725c4a6e53b8bbcdcdf364f60b87} of college graduates find work in that field. They make about $21,010 in median annual wage in that field while they could be making more money in doing the job that they studied for. Here is a list of the most common jobs that college graduates resort to taking up:

  • Personal Care Aides- Employs 10.5{c2bc4dcc82a24c7a0a4780d09ca51e05a889725c4a6e53b8bbcdcdf364f60b87} of all college graduates
  • Waitress and Waitresses- Employs 14.3{c2bc4dcc82a24c7a0a4780d09ca51e05a889725c4a6e53b8bbcdcdf364f60b87} of all college graduates
  • Bartenders- Employs 16.5{c2bc4dcc82a24c7a0a4780d09ca51e05a889725c4a6e53b8bbcdcdf364f60b87} of all college graduates
  • Telemarketers- Employs 18{c2bc4dcc82a24c7a0a4780d09ca51e05a889725c4a6e53b8bbcdcdf364f60b87} of all college graduates
  • Amusement and Recreation Attendants – Employs 23.5{c2bc4dcc82a24c7a0a4780d09ca51e05a889725c4a6e53b8bbcdcdf364f60b87} of all college graduates
  • Starting Salary According to College Major

Getting a Bachelor’s Degree is not a guarantee for getting a high paying job. What is sure to get a good salary is taking up the right college major. According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics the highest paying college major would be Petroleum Engineering where a new graduate could land a starting salary of $97.9 K already. Another good field to take up in college would be Computer Science which offers $56.6K in starting salary. Here is a list of the best paying college majors ranked from the highest starting salary to the lowest:

  • Software Engineering $54.9K
  • Biomedical Engineering $53.8K
  • Civil Engineering $53.1K
  • Applied Mathematics $52.6K
  • Environmental Engineering $51.7K
  • Management Information Systems $51K
  • Geology $45.3K
  • Biochemistry $41.7K