When the recovery comes, early job growth will be in health care, education, government, and green business. Here’s how to get ready today for the jobs of tomorrow
New college graduates are facing the worst job market in decades. Hiring is down, salaries are flat, and many grads are adrift. Entire industries have been decimated, from big carmakers to giant investment banks. But there’s still hope that recent college grads can launch a rewarding career—it just might not be the one they anticipated.
With the economy headed toward what many believe will be a jobless recovery, the hunt is on for industries where pockets of job growth are a real possibility. Many graduates will be perfectly positioned to take advantage of that growth; would-be teachers and nurses are particularly lucky in this regard. But many others will need to make a few last-minute adjustments to give themselves the training or experience they need to land a job in an industry where they never expected to be working.
“The important thing at this point is to get into the workforce to start building skills and gaining work experience, which should position you well for promotions or career moves when the economy eventually picks up,” says Barbara Hewitt, senior associate director of career services at the University of Pennsylvania.
cast a wide net
Rule No. 1: Forget the advice you’ve been given so far, and cast a wide net. “Many students are advised, and wisely so, to narrow their job search whenever possible based on their preferences and career goals,” says Dan Black, Ernst & Young’s Americas director of campus recruiting. “But in a tight economy, it may help to broaden your scope. Consider a greater number of companies, industries, or geographic locations if your current list is not yet yielding opportunities.”
Rule No. 2: Be prepared to move. When the recovery comes, it’s likely to impact some places earlier than others. According to a report by MSNBC and Moody’s Economy.com (MCO), job growth will return first to Colorado, Idaho, Oregon, Texas, and Washington State, starting in the fourth quarter, as pent-up demand for new technology (and in Texas, a concentration of energy companies) spur the local economies. And in the second quarter of 2010 a second wave of job growth is expected in Alabama, Georgia, Nebraska, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, and South Dakota.
What follows is a road map to the recovery—the industries where jobs are expected to come early and grow faster than the rest of the economy.
If any industry represents a bright spot in an otherwise dismal economy, it’s health care. With baby boomers aging and health-care reform in the air, this industry is expected to be the largest single source of U.S. job growth through 2016, according to a new report by the President’s Council of Economic Advisers. The already rapid growth in health-related jobs from 2000 to 2006 is expected to accelerate over the next few years, adding more than 3 million new jobs annually—everything from doctors, dentists, and nurses to jobs in health information technology. “People get sick,” notes Standard & Poor’s Chief Economist David Wyss, “regardless of the state of the economy.”
Great news if you’re in medical school, but what if you’re not and you have no interest in studying for a career in medicine? For business students who are not ready or willing to trade in their suits for scrubs, there will be management positions to be had with hospitals, nursing homes, pharmaceutical companies, health insurers, and affiliated business. For tech students, the burgeoning field of electronic medical records is a potential jobs gold mine.
For everybody else, the solution could be as simple as changing majors—many undergraduate business programs take just two years. Enrolling in a business certificate program such as the one offered by Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management, or even just taking a few business courses before graduation, are also options.
By: Teni Sow | Senior Editor at Tambapress.com and Regular Contributor to Presspresser.com
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