As the 2012 United States Presidential election heads towards conclusion, one topic seems to dominate the headlines. America is in the throes of one of its worst economic downturns. Unemployment remains at near all time highs while the mountain known as the national debt ascends to levels never seen before in U.S. history. It all adds up to tough economic times for American families, which leads to difficult choices having to be made to survive.
One group that has been particularly hard hit has been college graduates. There was once a time when those holding college degrees were thought to have it made. The document was a guarantee of a decent job and the means to make a comfortable living. Things have changed considerably now, as tuition rates have risen, while the economy has not responded in kind. President Obama has tried to help, with financial aid assistance being given in record amounts.
Those loans have been able to help students complete their college trek, but their post college debt has also risen. According to a report by the Institute for College Access & Success’ Project on Student Debt, the average student borrower now leaves a University with an average of $26,600 in outstanding loans. Though a hassle in the past, these loans were paid off relatively quickly because of the better salaries graduates received.
Such is not the case now. The staggering unemployment figure has not left the newly minted graduates immune to its clutches. The above noted report also showed that new graduates are dealing with their own wicked unemployment figure, currently at 8.8 percent. It is a disheartening number, when one considers that these folks have a student loan debt to repay that lenders are not going to wait for payments. Currently, two-thirds of the graduating class of 2011 are burdened with such loans. It might cause some to wonder if going to college is truly worth the cost. There are plenty of folks in the workplace that came right out of high school and founded their own businesses. The problem is those success stories are few and far between.
When it comes to unemployment figures, a college degree does seem to help in the pursuit of employment. Earlier, it was noted that the unemployment figure for college graduates in at 8.8 percent. If one wants to see an even scarier figure, check the number for the unemployed without that sacred piece of college paper. The number is a unfathomable 19.1 percent, at least at the end of 2011. Sadly, these numbers are yet another face to the continuing crisis that has become the American economic downfall of the past decade.