Statistics Back Higher Education for Blue Collar Workers
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the unemployment rate for college graduates over the age of 25 was 4.1% in February, up from 2.1% a year ago. However, this rate is substantially lower than the 8.3% unemployment rate for people with only a high school diploma.
Economists say that in this tight job market, one reason college graduates have a lower unemployment rate is because they’re taking jobs that don’t require a four-year degree, making it increasingly difficult for blue collar workers to compete. Companies are hiring these overqualified employees over individuals who don’t have a higher education because they can. So, what can blue collar workers do to compete in the job market?
To help with the job search, experts say that people need to be more flexible with their career options, because there’s no telling where the job growth will be 10 or 20 years from now. Economists speculate that in the future, job creation will be for new jobs that haven’t even been thought of yet, requiring more than a high school diploma.
Continue Your Education
To be flexible in your career choices, continue your education. This will play a crucial role in your job search success. Jobs that are opening up now are not necessarily physical labor positions, experts say, causing many blue collar workers to be limited in their career choices. This means many blue collar workers are going back to the classroom. In a recent MSNBC story, a man whose career path was laid out at an early age planned to be a factory worker until his retirement. But, after 20 years of factory work and increasing competition from foreign manufacturers, he knew his job wasn’t secure. So, he went back to school and now plans to become a teacher.
So, as the recession continues to take its toll on entry-level positions and other job markets, blue collar workers need to increase their skills to become more flexible in their career choices, helping them in their job search.
Remember, change isn’t a bad thing. By reexamining yourself and finding a new career path, you just might find your dream job. Visit your local Express Employment Professionals office to help you get started on a new career today.