The overworked bachelor’s degree needs a makeover
The Chronicle of Higher Education - 06/16/2014
The 1.7 million students who graduated from American colleges and universities last month, their newly minted bachelor’s degrees in hand, face bleak prospects. Their average student-loan debt is some $33,000. The underemployment rate for recent graduates is 44 percent, meaning the jobs many get won’t require the bachelor’s degrees they just earned. And since many jobs offer low pay or are only part time, the age of financial independence for college graduates these days is 30.
Potential employers aren’t offering much encouragement either. Nine out of 10 business leaders in a recent poll by Northeastern University said most college graduates lack the important skills needed to succeed in the workplace.
Many higher-education leaders contend that the difficulties that today’s college graduates face are the fallout of an economy stuck in neutral. While slow economic growth is certainly a factor, there is a larger problem that academe would prefer to ignore.