February 17, 2012

Jobless Numbers Lowest in Four Years

Plus, what kind of major might land you a job.

Scott: That is right, Jess. The latest jobless numbers show fewer Americans are applying for unemployment benefits, the money the government sends to people who are looking for a job. It is the fourth drop in five weeks. And applications for unemployment benefits are now at the lowest they have been since March of 2008. Still, the job market has a long way to go. Around 13 million people are without jobs. And young people are the hardest hit.

So, what can you do to prepare for what is next after high school? Here is a look at the best college majors for landing that job.

According to a recent Georgetown University study, the lowest unemployment rates were for students who had majored in geological and geophysical engineering, which combines math, physics, geology and pharmacology, which is the study of prescription drugs and their uses. They had zero unemployment!

The majors with the highest unemployment rates, where it would be hard to find a job, are clinical psychology, which has a nearly 20% unemployment rate. Fine arts majors are at 16%. And U.S. history at about a 15%  unemployment rate.

Now, if nothing is really jumping out at you just yet, the researchers also have some advice. Choose your major carefully. It can have a big impact on your job opportunities and future income. People who make technology do better than people who use technology. And in general, students who major in subjects that have direct links to occupations usually have more job prospects.

Young people have kept a good attitude about the economy despite these tough times. A recent Pew poll found 88% of young people surveyed said they expect to earn enough money in the future.


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