Why So Many College Grads Can’t Find a Job

Nancy Anderson
Posted by

by Alex A. Kecskes

By:  Alex Kecskes

Why are so many college grads finding it nearly impossible to find work? The reasons may surprise you. It’s not the fact that they have a liberal arts degree, that their grades are too low,or that companies simply aren't hiring in this downturn. 

The fact is employers are looking for eager young minds to fill a variety of entry-level posts. Yes, they want good grades, and grads from top schools often have a leg up. But what they really want are people with some experience in the work environment. Companies need individuals with people skills—new hires who can work in a team. Grads with a mix of business acumen and academia.

Can’t find a job? Some tips to get you from post grad to paycheck:

It’s who you know

The most successful grads will take their heads out of their books and put them in front of industry contacts. They’re the ones you always see at industry trade shows, seminars, job fairs—even in their sophomore and junior years. They’re gathering business cards, getting on a first name basis with HR managers and recruiters, then following up with periodic emails. When a job opens up during their senior year, they’re the first to get the interviews and the first to get hired.

It’s what you know

That senior you know who keeps getting job interviews. She’s the one that’s already working as an intern.  She may not be getting paid, but she’s certainly developing a ton of marketable job skills—learning to work with a cross section of underlings and superviors, “putting out fires,” and dealing with customers in a tactful way.

It’s how you know

How did that senior know about that job opening? Could it be because she’s connected to industry work groups and online professional organizations? Why aren’t you on Linkedin or eMarketing with hundreds of connections? Places where industry pros and HR people connect with each other. You’d know about the products, the problems, and the industry news that can make you sound like an insider to recruiters and employers.

For an added perspective, check out this video:

Got any thoughts on why you still don’t have a job? Include your comments in the section below.

Alex A. Kecskes has written hundreds of published articles on health/fitness, "green" issues, TV/film entertainment, restaurant reviews and many other topics. As a former Andy/Belding/One Show ad agency copywriter, he also writes web content, ads, brochures, sales letters, mailers and scripts for national B2B and B2C clients. Please see more of his blogs http://www.college-jobsblog.com/ and view additional job postings on Nexxt.


Become a member to take advantage of more features, like commenting and voting.

  • Bob P
    Bob P
    Congratulations, you have your degree! So how does a recent grad get a job when so many others are competing for the same position?   It begins by targeting the right companies, locating the hiring manager, and effectively contacting them to land that all-important interview. You also have to develop your own personal marketing campaign to stand out from the crowd. The secret to getting a job is finding your target company's problems and using your experience to help solve them. And yes, even though you may not have a lot of practical experience you can still help companies solve real problems.Perseverance is paramount. Never give up!

Jobs to Watch