Educated And Unemployed: Unemployment Rate For Recent College Grads Higher Than That Of High School Grads

 @lisamahapatra
on June 26 2013 2:28 PM

If you’ve just graduated from college with a degree in architecture, you’re basically all out of luck. The unemployment rate for just-graduated architecture majors is 12.8 percent, according to a study by Georgetown University.

That’s 5.4 percentage points higher than the unemployment rate for high school graduates over the age of 25, whose unemployment rate is 7.4 percent, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

While architecture grads have it exceptionally bad, unemployment rates for recent grads in pretty much every major are quite high. Eventually, though, having a college degree does pay off, as experienced college grads and those with graduate degrees experience a much lower level of unemployment than those with fewer years of education.

According to the study:

“Recent college graduates with a Bachelor’s degree or better are still bearing the greatest unemployment risk, with unemployment rates ranging from a low of 4.8 percent to a high of 14.7 percent depending on their major. Despite the slow recovery, the overall unemployment rate for recent college graduates is 7.9 percent and the overall unemployment rate for graduate degree holders is 3.3 percent.”

However, there are some college majors that are doing much better than the average. The unemployment rate for those with a health-related major is only 6.1 percent. The unemployment rate is even lower for those who graduate with a nursing degree, just 4 percent.

Here's a chart of unemployment rates, by college majors and by experience:

Here’s a chart of median yearly wages, by college majors and by experience:

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