It is difficult to ignore the poor state of the economy, especially as college students who are paying to get an education, only to realize that the jobs we desire may not even be available to us upon graduation. Bradley Andrew, associate professor of Accounting, Business, and Economics, was interviewed to find out the real scoop on what to expect and how to combat the recession in the next few years.
What is your personal take on the state of the economy?
To put it bluntly, the economy is limping along. The last three recessions have been different than in previous post World War II recessions in a bad way; in that it takes a lot longer for employment to recover. Up through the 1980s they were largely due to the fact that workers were temporarily laid-off by factories and then called back again once they could use the help. New jobs are usually created in different industries, but jobs are no longer needed because the industries are shrinking and closing. There is a delay before new industries grow to give new jobs; hence long-term unemployment has been rising.
Do you think we will ever completely recover from this recession? If so, how soon?
Because new industries have to be created or expanded, it will take a long time. Honestly, it won’t surprise me if we don’t see unemployment levels get back to where we were two years ago, which was at 6 percent, for at least 4 more years.
What would you say the job market outlook is for students in the next couple of years?
I don’t think most people will get a job as they expected and it will take longer to move up the ladder and earn higher incomes. Certainly, it will prove to be more challenging and anything students can do to increase their chances of scoring a job — attending career fairs, or whatever else is necessary — do it. You need to differentiate yourselves.
Should we be worried?
If worried means losing sleep over it, then no. But it would be wise to be concerned about getting resumes together more quickly and making contacts as soon as possible. It would be very helpful to expand your network of contacts to provide more opportunities for yourselves. It would be a good thing to find people that could help you and maintain contact so you can help them.
Do you have any advice you would like to impart?
Apart from what I’ve just said, my advice would be to find as many internships wherever and whenever possible. Find something to differentiate you from your peers. Do what is asked of you and be someone the company would hire, help, or recommend for another job. Stay in contact with those people.
-Samantha Stroup ’12, Juniata Online Journalist