Educated and unemployed in Europe

Europe’s “youth unemployment crisis” is “truly terrifying,”  writes Derek Thompson in The Atlantic. Overall, EU unemployment is 12.2 percent, but it’s twice that for would-be workers under 25.  Youth unemployment is 56 percent in Spain and 62.5 percent in Greece. ”We’ve never seen a generation this educated also be this unemployed,” Thompson observes. Nearly 40 percent of young people in Spain and 30 percent in Greece are college educated.

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The less scary “youth unemployment ratio” — the share of young job seekers divided by the entire population — is 9.7 percent in the EU.  That doesn’t count the young people who’ve given up looking for work, writes Thompson. There are 26 million young”NEETS” (Not Employed, or in Education, or Training) in developed countries, according to the OECD.

The youth unemployment rate in the U.S. was 16 percent in late 2012, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. More young Americans (14.8 percent) than young Europeans (13.2 percent) were NEETs in 2011, the last time the OECD issued an estimate. In Italy, 19.5 percent of young people were out of work, out of school and out of luck in 2011, even higher than the numbers in Greece and Spain.

Is 25 the new 15?

Twenty-five is becoming the new 15, argues Escaping the Endless Adolescence: How We Can Help Our Teenagers Grow Up Before They Grow Old.

Young people who’ve grown up in a responsibility-free “bubble” don’t know how to find a job, manage money, cook or care for themselves, write Joseph and Claudia Allen. They’ve been socialized by their peers, not by adults.

We’ve done away with “competition (too masculine, I suppose) and real-world feedback (kids need high self-esteem!),” writes Dr. Helen, a psychologist.

Young people spend more time as college students, often taking five or six years to earn a degree. If it’s a non-technical degree — or they never actually complete it — they’re likely to be living at home at 25.

College rush is slowing

“The recession convinced many young American high-school graduates to take refuge in college instead of try their luck in a lousy job market,” reports the Wall Street Journal. But, now fewer high school graduates are going on to college, according to the Labor Department.

On 2012, 66.2 percent of recent graduates enrolled in college:  The share of female graduates enrolling in college declined from 72.3 percent the year before to 71.3 percent. Men, who are lagging in college attendance, declined from 64.6 percent to 61.3 percent.

Some graduates think they can find jobs, though unemployment rates remain high — 34.4 percent for high school graduates who aren’t in school.

I suspect young people are more wary of borrowing for college, especially if they’re not strong students.

Workforce dropouts rise

Discouraged workers are dropping out of the workforce, masking the true unemployment rate. Only 63.3 percent of working-age adults are in the labor force.  Some enroll in community college — or graduate school. Others apply for disability or take early retirement.

Manufacturers are looking for skilled workers in Minnesota, but technical colleges have a hard time filling all the seats in manufacturing programs, even though pay averages $56,000 a year. Factory work has a stigma.

Educated but jobless in China

In the U.S., employment rises with education. In Chinese cities,  young college graduates are four times as likely to be unemployed as those with an elementary education. Why? Graduates want “clean” office jobs and won’t risk their status by taking factory work, even though it pays more. As in the U.S., vocational training is considered low status.

Mommy’s college boy

Jobless graduates

Here’s grim news for Labor Day: Only 64% of 2011 and 2012 graduates have a job of any kind and most working grads aren’t in jobs that require a degree, according to a survey by the Wall Street Journal‘s Market Watch.

College students are competing for jobs with older workers who haven’t been able to move up or afford to retire.

Another survey out of Rutgers found that about half of college graduates are finding themselves working in a job that doesn’t require any of the skills they obtained in the course of their studies. Only 1/5th actually managed to get that fit their major in a relevant way. Most find themselves in a paid position that wouldn’t have required a four-year degree to obtain, causing some survey takers to think that the the time and money invested in the higher education might have been a waste.

Via Education News.

College graduates should not have to live out their 20s in their childhood bedrooms, staring up at fading Obama posters and wondering when they can move out and get going with life,” Paul Ryan said in accepting the Republican vice presidential nomination.

Already a GOP PAC has an ad up:

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Sallie Mae drops ‘unemployment penalty’

Under pressure from an online petition, Sallie Mae will stop charging a forbearance fee – $50 every three months per loan — to unemployed borrowers. Instead, what the private lender calls a “good faith deposit” will be applied to the balance of the loan.

Stop Sallie Mae’s unemployment penalty

Stop Sallie Mae’s unemployment penalty demands a Change petition.

Federal financial aid is geared to full-time, degree-seeking students, complained Education Secretary Arne Duncan’s audience at Tallahassee Community College. Colleges can’t train 2 million skilled workers without aid for people seeking short-term job training or part-timers who need literacy or English classes to qualify for a job.

‘Brain hubs’ create middle-skill jobs

“Brain hubs” with well-educated workers, such as Austin and Raleigh, also create middle-class jobs for middle-skill workers. Opportunity spills over — or, at least, trickles down. But, in most of the country, less-skilled workers face bleak job prospects.