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In This Precarious Economy, Sometimes A Recent College Graduate Cannot Be So Particular About A Job

Updated on March 3, 2013

One Must Take Babysteps.......Babysteps......

It seems that the socioeconomic situation is not getting better. Thousands of recent college graduates are not finding jobs, let alone jobs which are comparable to their majors and/or education. Many college graduates elected to pursue further tertiary education with the hope that they will obtain employment after the attainment of their Master's or Doctorate Degrees. There are others who are interning at varied companies and organizations because they believe that internship opportunities will help them to get noticed and get their foot into the corporate door.

Quite a few college graduates are so dejected regarding the grim job prospects that they decide to wait it out until a job commensurate with their education and/or major arrives. They portend that they will not work at any job or a job which does not require a college education. They reason that once a college graduate work such jobs, his/her career prospects will be limited. They even counsel their friends not to take any job because taking jobs which are below their educational level will look quite negatively on their resumes when they apply for future professional level jobs. They further contend that employers of corporation will look quite askance at someone who took an unprofessional job or a mcjob.

Many college graduates further relay that it is totally futile to take a job which would be beneath them educationally. They reason that since they spent years in college studying, why should they stoop to work at a job which only requires a high school education. They portend that such would be totally preposterous and asinine to say the least. So they depend financially on their parents until a suitable job comes along. According to this logic, many college graduates contend that it is better for them to do nothing than to waste their lives and talents at a job which is totally beneath them educationally.

There are some college graduates who are more enterprising. They have the wherewithal to be entrenepeurs. They often start out very small, work smart, and develop skills/ clientele as they progress. Some college graduates have prodigious computer skills and earn monies blogging and/or other related internet skills. These young men and women portend that this precarious job situation is no excuse not to be working. They contend that work is wherever you find and create it. They do not believe in being fatalists regarding the present socioeconomic situation, they intend to be proactive regarding employment opportunities. They would rather make their opportunities than to wait for opportunities to arrive.

However, there will come a period when a college graduate has to buckle down and become an actual adult with adult responsibilities. Yes, that means looking for a job and perhaps being able to take a "right now" job. I now hear complete gasps of dismay and utter horror from many recent college graduates. Yes, sometimes a recent college graduate, if there is a dearth of professional jobs available, has to be able to assess the situation realistically and take a job which would put his/her foot in the door.

Studies show that many recent college graduates are taking jobs which do not require a college education e.g. clerical/administrative jobs and lower level service jobs. Even though these jobs may be mcjobs and/or not the job of their dreams, valuable work experience can be gained from such jobs. For instance, one learns how to relate to coworkers and bosses in addition to learning how to interfacing with customers and the general public. There are some recent college graduates who are deriding this as I write. They are saying no way- they insist to having having a plum career or be unemployed-there is no in between.

Even though the mcjob may not be the job of one's dreams, one can gain some type of job experience which will be quite advantageous when looking for future jobs. Many employers look quite negatively upon gaps between the time a person graduates from college and when heyou obtained employment. Any unexplained gaps from one year on will be seen as quite circumspect by the employer. Most people know that it takes an average of six months for a recent college graduate to obtain employment. However, regarding the aforementioned gaps between school and employment, if a prospective employee answers that he/she is looking for a job suitable for his/her education and was not about to take any job, the employer will often deem him/her as not having a solid work ethic.

Also many career counselors advise recent college graduates not to wait too long before obtaining employment because if they wait too long do so with significant gaps, it is little likelihood that they will be employed. I remember a career counselor informing me that one must have a job before the age of twenty-five. She further relayed that if a person did not have any type of employment by the age of twenty-five, there was a less likelihood that he/she would be hired. In other words, no work history by the age of twenty-five bespeaks negatively regarding the person's work ethic, drive, and initiative. Many employers portend that it is better for a recent college graduate to take a less than ideal job to show that he/she has some type of work ethic than to wait around for a more suitable job.

Not only career counselors but many people voice the same. They maintain that a job, even it is not comparable to a recent graduate's educational level, helps one gain transferrable work experience and skills. But there are other people who assert that it is better for a recent college graduate to hold out as long as he/she is able to until a job commensurate with his/her educational level arrives. They portend that once a recent college graduate "settles" for a less than ideal job, he/she is committing career suicide and limiting his/her career prospects for the future. They add that employers will never consider any college graduate with mcjob experience for more lucrative and fast track jobs in the corporate sector.

Many people further contend that a recent college graduate can obtain more relevant experience relating to his/her future employment by volunteering and/or interning for companies. According to them, volunteering and internships offer a recent college graduate opportunities that a mcjob never can. They relay that volunteering and interning makes use of a recent college graduate's educational attainment whereas a mcjob is often mindnumbing and repetitive. Volunteering and internships can expose a recent college graduate to the right kind of people who could be instrumental in getting into the right career. There are some parents who adamantly advise their children against taking a less than ideal job because of the supposedly negative connotations that would adversely affect the latter's future career choices. These parents do not mind financially supporting their children while they volunteer and do internships until the right job commensurate with their education arrives.

Of course there are parents who adamantly assert that as soon as their children graduate from college, they are to find a job. These parents portend that since the latter graduated from college, they are grown and that means becoming independent and responsible for their lives. They maintain that if their children find the ideal job/career commensurate and/or suited to their education, that is fine. However, they insist that they will not financially support their grown children while the latter just decide to wait it out until a more suitable job arrives. These parents are of the school that a job, even though it is less than an ideal job, affords one transferrable skills. They add that the job affords spending change for clothes and other essentials while looking for a better job.

Many parents, unless they are in the lower upper socioeconomic bracket, can ill afford to financially support their adult children until they find a job which is commensurate to their education. So many recent college graduates, like it or not, have to contend with "right now" jobs until a more suitable job arrives. The ratio of commensurate jobs/careers to the number of recent college graduates is even shrinking. Yes, those who majored in the technical/hard sciences, math, medicine, and computers have the easiest time obtaining jobs/ careers commensurate with their education. Even the business and law majors find it difficult to obtain jobs/careers commensurate with their education. You can guess that the liberal arts and humanities majors will have the most difficult time finding such employment. While some liberal arts and humanities majors luck out and obtain suitable jobs, others usually have to work in mcjobs until more suitable employment opportunities avail themselves. In these precarious socioeconomic times, a college degree is no sure guarantee to secure suitable employment. With the ever reduction of college-level jobs, many college graduates have to settle for mcjobs for the time being.

To conclude, in these perilous and uncertain socioeconomic times, there are a dearth of jobs, especially those which require college degrees. This result in many recent college graduates having to take jobs which does not necessarily require a college degree. Of course, there are some recent college graduates who elect not to take mcjobs because they consider such jobs beneath them educationally. As a result, they would rather be unemployed. However, if a recent college graduate is unemployed for a very long period of time, this reflects negatively upon his/her drive, work ethic, motivation, and initiative.

There are some recent college graduates who use the mcjob as an opportunity to get his/her foot in the door. They smartly use the lessons learned as transferrable skills which can be applied to their future jobs.

© 2012 Grace Marguerite Williams


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