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The University Star




The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

Upcoming graduation affects job market

Texas+State+senior+Jules+Cabrera+poses+for+graduation+photos+Sunday%2C+May+7%2C+2023%2C+near+the+UAC+arch.

Texas State senior Jules Cabrera poses for graduation photos Sunday, May 7, 2023, near the UAC arch.

Students are looking to walk the stage this coming week for spring 2023 commencement. Many graduates have a job lined up for their future, but some do not. 
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, in March 2023 the total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 236,000. Nonfarm payroll measures the number of workers in the U.S. except those in farming, private households, proprietors, non-profit employees and active military.
From March 2021 to March 2023, the unemployment rate fell from 6% down to 3.5%. Although, William Chittenden, associate professor of finance, said that the job market for students might be slowing down right now.
“In the last month [U.S] created about 29,000 jobs, which is about half of what we’ve been creating every month for the past 12 months,” Chittenden said. “The good news is that we are still driving along down the highway. The bad news is that we might be taking our foot off the gas pedal a little bit.”
Chittenden predicts a recession coming in the next six to 12 months, which might not be in favor of graduates looking for jobs right now.
“If we do have a recession, it means that we don’t need as many workers so either we stop hiring or actually start laying people off,” Chittenden said. “There are a lot of signs that the recession will happen. The Federal Reserve has been increasing interest rates to try to bring inflation under control.”
As a professor that looks at the data almost every day, Chittenden said college graduates should never give up searching for the job they truly want to do.
“If you see a job ad and it says ‘here’s the four things that we’re looking for in an employee, make sure in that cover letter you’ve addressed each of those four things,” Chittenden said. “You know how they’re going to scan through all those resumes? They’re going to look for who’s got these four things.”
According to the University of Washington, approximately 53% of college graduates are unemployed or working in a job that doesn’t require a bachelor’s degree. It also states it takes the average graduate three to six months to get a job after graduation.
Ray Rogers, director of Career Services, said the job market for students is looking great for some and the opposite for others.
“It’s a tale of multiple job markets,” Rogers said. “Overall, employers are coming to us saying we’re not getting enough candidates and there is still certain employers that are desperate. There are others like the service industry, health care and other industries are really having a hard time. We also see big tech laying people off at the same time.”
Rogers advises students to making sure the application process is taken care of thoroughly rather than speed applying without the proper accommodations and preparations.
“Someone was telling me their son sent out multiple applications and hasn’t heard anything back, and we hear that a lot,” Rogers said. “Students’ time is much better spent applying well to fewer jobs than applying generically or poorly to multiple jobs.”
Laura Jones, assistant director for Employer Engagement, said the best thing students can do is use resources given to them for free by the school.
“I would say take advantage of events with employers,” Jones said. “We put on a lot of fairs. We also put on workshops and sometimes employers are coming to present that and that is one of the easiest ways to go beyond being a piece of paper to that employer.”
President Kelly Damphousse said he want students to know that Career Services is not just for seniors about to graduate, but also undergraduates looking for a job.
“We provide career service opportunities for all our students not just graduating seniors,” Damphousse said. “You can even get a job that is not related to your degree, but of course we want students to get a job related to what they are working on in school.”
Damphousse said that Texas State cares about its students no matter if they are a undergraduate or even a post graduate.
“We have a strong interest in what happens to our students not just while they are here but even afterwards,” Damphousse said. “We understand that we do have a responsibility for workforce development in students.”
Both Jones and Rogers said to continue to apply to jobs even if a recession is coming or not as employers will still hire during those times.
“Focus on what you have the ability to control which is what experience and knowledge and skills you gain while you’re here,” Jones said. “It might be a little harder, it might be a little easier. The best thing to do is focus on you.”
For more information about career services, visit its website.

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