Sep 172002
Authors: Willow Welter

The narrowing job market may pose hardships for seniors who will graduate this year.

Student recruitment by companies declined by 50 percent last year, said Ann Malen, director of the Career Center. Despite this drop in recruitment, Judi Barbour, Career Center liaison for the agricultural department, pointed out an increase in government positions.

“Foreign aid jobs are in higher demand because of the war on terrorism,” Barbour said. “Finding a job after graduation really depends a lot on personal contacts and networking.”

Other areas where employment is actually increasing are health care, non-profit and security jobs, Malen said.

Both Barbour and Malen noted that many baby boomers are retiring, leaving job positions for the future college graduates. In addition, they both insisted that internships can be vital to finding a job. Some seniors, like journalism major Bryce Chapman, have already begun to pursue this advice; Chapman plans to do an internship at the state legislature this spring to launch his career.

While the economy grows sluggish and unemployment rises, finding and keeping work in some fields has grown difficult for many Americans. A college degree does not necessarily guarantee a job, a truth that some seniors have already accepted.

“I realize I might have to pick a job after graduation that doesn’t relate to or need my college degree,” said Jackie Dlhos, a senior majoring in wildlife biology. “But I’d be okay with that for a while.”

Some seniors feel completely confident about employment after graduation, despite the recession, lay-offs and unemployment that have increased over the past year. Heather Gore, a health and exercise science major, said she isn’t worried since she is going into the medical field.

Another senior, civil engineering major Brad Sours, said that he feels almost certain his particular major will lead to employment after graduation.

“Even with a poor economy,” Sours said, “there is one thing the U.S. job market can never lack, and that’s infrastructure.”

Workshops designed to help students with writing resumes, interviews and job searches are currently being hosted by the Career Center. Information on such workshops, as well as the upcoming career fair is available at

Edited by Shandra Jordan, Colleen Buhrer

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