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Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Super-educated & Unemployed

Whenever there's tough financial times, the #1 belief among people is that by going back to school and getting a degree (or a "better") one, it will dramatically improve their chances of finding a well paying job in the ultra-competitive workforce...

But is it true?

Let's look at some statistical finding about those with higher education and finding success obtaining employment.  We start with general stats of the nation at large.

Currently 1 in 6 Americans is on food stamps.   That's 17% thereabouts

Here's the racial break down:

Whites        41%
Blacks        38%
Hispanics   18%
Asians          3%
Aside:  Yours truly used to wonder why there never are any Asian people depicted on TV in afternoon soap operas.  Matter of factly, the response given to me was Asians are too busy working hard during the day to watch a 'soap' so there's no financial incentive for TV and advertisers to represent them on the shows.

Continuing... Of those in 2010 receiving food stamps and other welfare assistance, a tiny bit more than 293,000 people were Masters' Grads and a little over 33,600 were PhD recipients.

And of those with at least a Bachelor's Degree receiving Federal assistance in 2010 (over 1.5 million people)  21% ended up being hired as Customer Service Reps. with about 16% becoming telemarketers and another 13.4% becoming waiters/waitresses.

5% become janitors or cleaners.
Well with all that education, you'd think maybe they could become teachers, yes?  College/University level education must provide a good living doesn't it?

*  70% of all Universities are made up of adjunct professors with their salary to teach a course ranging from $600 to $10,000; the average cost to be about $2500 per course.

Because of the ease of finding cheap replacements for Real Professors i.e. hiring grad students and the like, its incredibly hard for those in the profession to get hired full time, much less reach a position of tenure.

*  Tightened budgets have forced colleges to cut back on hours of teaching time and courses assigned to part-time facility

So what does that really say about the state of the nation?

Well, for one thing few people respect or admire intelligence in others, especially if that can not be fine-tuned into something which makes profitable to others.  Rather, genuine intelligence and academic excellence trigger resentment and insecurity in others.
It also says universities do a piss-poor job or preparing young men and women for the work world, and really couldn't care less as long as the semester stipend check did not bounce.

Lastly it shows that while tuition continues to spike upward with student loans accompanying it, the actual quality and value of the education acquired is less and less, which all contributes to the continual dumbing down of the greater society.

And what does it say about the state of the job market?

Basically for all the talk about education and degrees helping to land a well paying job, there are three things a person Truly needs to have a fighting shot of making through the ongoing, never-ending recession:

1)  Work Experience--  Companies are cheap and lazy-- if they can hire someone with experience whom they don't have to devote so much as 30seconds to properly train, he/she is worth gold to an employer.

PS:  Just don't expect to get paid what you're worth
2)  Contacts-- This is called Networking which to be honest, we find quite disgusting and along lines of socialized whoring.   But it does work-- people do value connections over companies' Human Resources department devoting Any time seeking to find quality employees on their own

3)  Good Personality--  Even for positions that don't require interactions with the public, this is important, and what makes it invaluable for an employer finding someone who possesses the ability to have friendliness is that its very rare..  Most may be friendly to those they love and care about, but to the general public, the vast majority fake 'friendly' more than orgasms.

The truth is society does not respect or admire intelligence, especially when possessed in others.  They will admire a basketball being slam-dunked, a golf ball placed into a cup by a guy with an oversized bite and 'swoosh' on his cap or perhaps an actor on the set of a film crying on director cue..

But intelligence?  Everyone thinks they possess it (Wrong!) so they're not going to value and give due respect to something they believe mistakenly to be common.
Add to to that, the fact that most employers are very insecure people who are genuinely afraid to hire someone more energetic, talented or brilliant then they, for fear of losing their jobs (rightly so!)..  It makes for great difficulty for the over-educated unless willing to put up with a lot of nonsense and needlessly eat humble-pie.

So to the Master's and Ph'D recipient who's out of work, its exceptionally tough out there but stay strong and remember in spite of the tough times, you were not meant to ask "Would you like fries with that?"