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How the next generation feels about joining the workforce

  • How the next generation feels about joining the workforce

    The workforce is constantly changing. Needed skills have shifted with some skills now prioritized over others; fields and industries have undergone major changes. As new generations enter the workforce, students' feelings of preparedness for this next stage in their lives also depends on the jobs available and the skills demanded. The upcoming generation entering the workforce is no different, and they, too, vary in expectations and readiness for the start of their careers.

    Using data from McGraw Hill Education, Stacker researchers analyzed the 30 key points and statistics about how the next generation feels about joining the workforce. The Spring 2018 Future Workforce Survey, conducted by McGraw Hill Education in conjunction with MMR Research Associates, reports students feelings of preparedness in terms of careers, financial obligations and skills, as well as feelings about choice in major and choice in career path. Stats and numbers are backed up with references to other news sites and articles relating to the next generation and the workforce.

    Stacker compiled a list of the unique ways the next generation feels about joining the workforce. Read on to learn about how this coming generation differs from previous generations.

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  • 40% of students indicated that college debt will significantly impact career choices

    40% of students strongly agreed or somewhat agreed with the statement: “Debt I will have significantly affects the types of jobs I am pursuing.” Although overall students feel positive about choice of major and future career opportunities, the burden of college debt impacts some of these choices, according to the report “Buried in Debt.”

  • More men than women feel prepared for the financial obligation of college

    Forty-nine percent of men reported feeling prepared for the financial obligation of college whereas 38% of women reported feeling the same way. Overall, men felt more prepared than women in all aspects of college life, including course load, academic rigor, and social life.

  • Students wants more internships and professional experience to feel better prepared

    Half of students reported that more internships and professional experience would have been helpful for them to feel more prepared for the workforce and their future careers. This was seen as helpful by a higher percentage of students than, for example, having more time to focus on career preparation (38%) or networking with alumni (26%).

  • 88% of students believe their major will help them get a job

    Almost 90% of students reported strongly agreeing or somewhat agreeing with the statement “my major will help me get a job,” according to a NerdWallet study. Roughly the same percentage of students reported selecting majors with perceived employment opportunities in that field. Of these 88%, 57% believed there were many opportunities in many different career fields for their major, and 48% agreed that skills in their major are in high demand.

  • Gap in critical skills needed for the workforce

    Students reported feeling unprepared in skills such as complex problem solving, resume writing, and workplace technology among other critical skills needed in the workplace. When asked about the skills students learned in college, fewer than half of the students reported feeling prepared in this area.

  • Collaboration skills, team player mentality, and communications skills are high

    A majority of students reported college has prepared them in interpersonal skills, such as collaboration, working as a team, and communicating with others. Similarly, many students (63%) reported that college helped them learn how to manage their time well. In the non-technical skills, college has prepared students fairly well in these aspects.

  • Courses found to be most helpful in career preparation

    A full 56% of students reported that college courses were the most helpful in preparing them for their careers. Since 88% of students strongly believe that their major choice will help them get a job, there is a strong belief that their courses will help prepare them for the work they do after graduation.

  • Men were more likely than women to report feeling prepared for their career

    When asked how prepared students felt for their career, 50% of men reported feeling “extremely prepared” or “very prepared” whereas only 36% of women reported the same. This can be a result of different perceptions or experiences in school and in other professional settings.

  • Non-traditional students feel more prepared than traditional students

    49% of non-traditional students reported feeling prepared for their careers, compared to only 34% of traditional students reporting the same. A large percentage of non-traditional students reported entering the workforce for a period of time before returning to school, which may contribute to their feelings of preparedness and experience.

  • More students in 2018 feel career ready compared to students in 2017

    41% of students reported feeling either “extremely” or “very prepared” for their careers, whereas in 2017, only 29% of students reported the same. Although this number has improved from last year, it is still somewhat low and reflects a trend of students feeling confused and unprepared.

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