Senior job search filled with anxiety



Like many seniors, Dorothy Jean ’04 said she is a little nervous about what to do after college.

“I guess a lot of us are feeling pretty scared about [finding a job],” she said. “I’m a cog sci major, so I’m not sure if I want to go into research or find some other job like consulting or public relations.”

Jean said she recently had her resume reviewed at Undergraduate Career Services, and signed up for an appointment to discuss her options.

Like Jean, many seniors are beginning to consider where they will be a year from now, and some are worried about what the poor economy will mean for them. Although many companies are continuing to cut jobs, UCS Director Philip Jones said the job market is not as bad as students at Yale imagine.

“We want to overcome the mythology which I think is happening now is that there aren’t any jobs out there, which is not true, which is not to say it’s 2000 all over again,” he said.

Employment statistics are not yet available for Yale’s class of 2003, but at the University of Pennsylvania, the number of graduates still seeking employment after college rose from 7 percent to 11 percent between 2000 and 2002, the Daily Pennsylvanian reported Wednesday.

Adam Milch ’04, a history major, said he was too preoccupied with his senior essay to conduct a full-scale job search.

“I worked this summer at Time Magazine in Washington, D.C., so I was thinking that maybe I could follow up with that sometime there,” he said. “I don’t think it’s worth stressing about at the moment.”

More students have been applying to graduate and professional schools during the economic downturn, but a significant number work for a few years before going, Jones said.

Noemi Najbauer ’04, who wants to get a Ph.D. in English, and Amsalu Dabela ’04, who has begun applying to medical school, said they have known since high school that they wanted to continue their education after college. Both said they are relatively calm about their futures.

“My plan is basically to apply to some grad schools and if I am accepted go as a Ph.D. person. If in a year or two years I feel this is enough, I will go find a job, and if not I will stay on for a couple years,” Najbauer said. “Graduate school, though it is a change and you have to apply and it is quite a complicated process, it’s something similar to what you’ve been doing so far — you’re going to go on being a student.”

About 200 students expressed interest in law school last year, but only about 150 of those actually applied, Jones said.

Jones said education is the field that draws the largest number of Yalies straight out of college, followed by finance and consulting.

He said UCS typically receives mixed feelings from recent alumni.

“The stances tend to be of two kinds — you get folks who are thrilled, happy, life is wonderful, and you’ve got other people who — their plans haven’t worked as expected or they graduated and need to form a plan. We had some alumni come back to us in August with that kind of mind set,” he said.

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