Posted by: Louis Lavelle on January 6, 2010
This really has nothing to do with business school or MBA programs, but good news being in such short supply these days I couldn’t resist.
The National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) is reporting what appears to be a turnaround in the job market for new college graduates.
NACE’s most recent survey of employers (in December) found that a third expected to increase college hiring in the first quarter of 2010, while 26.7% expected a decrease—the first time since August 2008 that the optimists outnumbered the pessimists. The new survey pegs the NACE hiring index at 98.2, up from 87.2 in November.
In a statement, Marilyn Mackes, NACE executive director, put the results in context:
The college Class of 2010 is facing a tough job market, but there are signs that college hiring has turned the corner and has stopped receding, as we’ve seen improvement in the hiring index for the third consecutive month. This suggests that we may have hit bottom and are now slowly starting to rebuild.
After the worst job market for new college graduates since the 2001 recession, all this is good news indeed. Last October, when my colleague Peter Coy examined the “Lost Generation” of unemployed college graduates, his analysis found that those aged 22 to 27 were among the hardest hit by the downturn. Two years ago, 84.4% of young grads had jobs, only somewhat lower than the 86.8% figure for college graduates aged 28 to 50. Since then, the employment gap between the two groups has almost doubled.
Given just how brutal the job market has been for young grads, is optimism misplaced, or perhaps a little early? What’s everybody think? Is the Great Recession finally giving way to the Great Recovery? Will the job search be easier for the Class of 2010?