This year’s graduates may find a few more jobs than last year’s grads..
No, this is not the news we had been waiting for. The economy is still in recovery mode, but some indicators are looking better.
The National Association of Colleges and Employers spring job outlook survey revealed employers plan to increase college hiring by 5.3 percent this year from 2009. A separate NACE student survey found 24.4 percent of responding graduating college seniors who applied for jobs said they had jobs waiting this year. That is up from 19.7 percent who said so a year earlier, but still no major turnaround.
Staff at local universities said they have not yet completed their surveys of students’ job search results. But job postings are up at some. Still others have seen dropoffs in employer interest as the shaky economy continues to make it tough for graduates to launch their careers.
Still, the numbers are all over the place in Chicago:
The University of Chicago has seen a 36 percent increase in job postings this year compared to last, and the number of recruiters on campus rose 23 percent, said Marthe Druska, senior associate director, Career Advising & Planning Services.
At DePaul University, April job postings — the most recent data available — were up 37 percent. Still, that was 40 percent below April 2008, notes Carol Montgomery, associate vice president of career and money management at DePaul. The university meanwhile saw an 11 percent drop in the 2009-10 year in the number of employers attending job fairs this year compared to last, she said.
Job postings and internships at the University of Illinois at Chicago fell 10 percent, and employers attending job fairs declined 33 percent, said Katherine Battee-Freeman, assistant director for recruitment.
Graduating seniors here expected a tough time in their job search. Among them was DePaul business student Jacqueline Scharf, who majored in operations management.
To the grads, remember, any job "in the meantime" is better than sitting on mom and dad’s couch. So suck it up, get over yourself, and get out there. Work fast food or drive a cab, whatever it takes. Stay active and show employers you want to work and can do so dependably.