I read an article on Forbes (Underemployment Persists Throughout College Graduates’ Careers ) that stated 43% of college graduates are underemployed in their first job out of college and some are still underemployed after 5 years.
The part of the article that was really alarming was that underemployed graduates are more likely to stay underemployed well into their career. I have to say that this was a truth that I hadn’t realized. I graduated from my undergrad in 2014 and I recently graduated from graduate school in 2018. That means I have been underemployed for going on five years.
My first job as a college graduate was at a bank where I was a call representative and I didn’t use my college degree not one bit. I just sat there all day having customer’s yell at me about the money they owed. After that I worked at Disney full-time while working on my master’s degree. That job was a lot of intense labor and barely any brain power. Still didn’t use my degree, but this was the only job I could get in the area that didn’t involve sales. You see, a lot of the jobs I applied for in Orlando would claim they are marketing and PR jobs, but that was a cover-up for another sales job. I didn’t major in Business in my undergrad, I majored in Journalism, so you can see how that would be a problem. I now have a job that has opened other doors for me, but I am still underemployed and this is after applying to the job with a master’s degree. I hated my previous job, so I took the first job I could get and I sort of regret that now. This is an instance where patience is key.
It’s funny how you need a certain degree for certain jobs, but when you apply to those jobs they reject you because you don’t have enough experience. How am I able to get that experience if no one in that particular field will hire me? This is something I have heard from other graduates as well. It makes you think that this whole school thing is a scam. At times I thought it was my particular choice of study. I thought that maybe if I had gotten a biology degree or engineering degree then I would have gotten more opportunities, but it seems that grads with those particular degrees are also underemployed by a pretty large percentage.
The article pointed to a key fact that having a job that uses your learned college skills helps you to grow and expand on those skills. When you don’t use those skills in your job or even years after, it makes it even harder to land a job in your desired field, which means now that I have been underemployed for five years, it has become harder for me to land a career in my desired field.
The article also stated that underemployment rates could even be higher because some jobs, like mine, require a college degree, but don’t actually require college-level skills. This is crazy because many grads are going into these jobs expecting to utilize their skills and are being scammed into a job that most of the time, doesn’t even need a brain.
It makes you wonder why do we even waste time going to school if there will be no opportunities and companies hire, but aren’t willing to pay employees a fair amount. This is something I really hope improves because, if not, there will be even more students who are dealing with the same thing while drowning in debt that they can’t pay off.