Class of 2022 graduates into good job market, but not jobs they wanted – Business Insider

by | Jun 12, 2022 | Jobs

The job market is hot, with a near-record number of job openings and the Great Resignation roaring.
But the most recent group of college graduates might not be reaping the rewards.
More than 40% of recent college grads took jobs that don’t require a degree.

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The class of 2009 had the Great


. The class of 2020 had a once-in-a-lifetime, world-upending pandemic.The class of 2022, though, is “graduating into a wealth of opportunities,” according to Richard Johnson, an associate economist at Glassdoor. But to MiMi Wood, a 22-year-old graduate of Clark Atlanta University, it doesn’t feel that way. Wood is currently looking for a full-time research job in tech or media to balance with an online master’s program. They say they’ve been applying to about five jobs a day. “It’s discouraging, because a lot of jobs will send messages — it’ll be an automatic message,” Wood said. “And it’s kind of like, how do I know what I’m doing wrong, if no one’s giving me actual, tangible feedback?”

MiMi Wood.

Courtesy of MiMi Wood

This year’s class is “certainly in a better situation” than 2020 graduates who faced the worst of the pandemic economy, according to AnnElizabeth Konkel, an economist at Indeed Hiring Lab.The US has almost recovered all the jobs the pandemic affected and could finish recovery by this summer if the country continues to see job growth at the current pace. Millions of Americans are quitting every month and reshaping the labor market as they reshuffle into new positions. They think life is too short to stay in a job they’re not passionate about, and some are seeing the benefits of quitting and moving on, like better work-life balance and higher pay.The class of 2022 agrees. But right now, even as they flood into a job market that’s ripe with opportunity, some are still struggling to find a job that fits. It might be the result of a few mismatches: The job market is hot, with over 11 million openings every month in 2022 so far as of April. But the jobs that are hiring don’t always require a degree and, many times, are lower-paying positions — a combo that Gen Z shows little interest in. Plus, Gen Z has higher standards for roles and is competing with a whole workforce that is in the midst of a Great Reshuffling.After more than a year of a booming economy, some big companies are putting a freeze on hiring due to recession fears. For the class of 2022, that could mean a murkier entry than they had hoped into the job market.

The open jobs don’t necessarily match up with Gen Z’s expectations or qualificationsRecent hiring projections from the National Association of Colleges and Employers indicate that employers are planning to hire 31.6% more new graduates than last year. But there’s a potential mismatch between the jobs that new grads want and the ones that the economy has open.As of March 2022, 41.4% of recent college graduates held jobs that don’t require a degree, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York’s analysis of these rates. That percentage has been ticking up over the last year as low-wage jobs continue to make up the bulk of economic recovery. As of April, the majority of these open jobs are in industries like business services …

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