College Grads vs. High School Grads in The Great Recession

Is college worth the cost? Earlier this week, Georgetown University released a report about how education levels impact employment prospects:

Since job growth resumed in early 2010 with the end of the recession, employment by those with a Bachelor’s degree or better has increased by 2 million, while employment by those with an Associate’s degree or some college experience has increased by 1.6 million. Those with some college education or an Associate’s degree have recovered nearly 91 percent of jobs lost during the recession, but are still short of their prerecession employment levels (See Table 1). In contrast, people with a Bachelor’s degree or better have experienced a net increase of 2.2 million jobs over their prerecession levels.

Those with only a high school diploma or less continue to experience job losses, though in much smaller numbers [...]. In part this is due to the financial bubble that created a corresponding bubble in housing and construction jobs. When the housing market recovers, the construction industry will create some demand for workers with a high school diploma or less. Yet, it is hard to expect any substantial job gains in the near future for job seekers with no postsecondary schooling.

Read the report here: The College Advantage: Weathering The Economic Storm [pdf] - via The Atlantic


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The average earnings of a bachelor's degree or an associate's degree is an almost meaningless statement because degrees are not equally marketable. There's a world of difference between a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering and a bachelor's degree in the classics, or an associate of applied science degree in machining technology and an associate of arts degree.
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I agree with Miss Cellania, but from my experience some of those menial managment or supervision postions now require a degree by the institutions that employee them. In the past you could get promoted from within with minimal education and vast experience. Such as the case it skews the graph and in my opinion reduces the amount of actual work being done because of poor management.
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This graph may say less about the number of jobs and more about the the employment pool. I look at it and see college graduates working at a drive-through window because they rose to the top of the list of applicants.

But yes, some of it may be explained by the outsourcing of manufacturing jobs. Altogether, not very encouraging.
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