Economy won’t discourage job hunters

Economy wont discourage job hunters

by Jessica Savage

Despite a growing national trend of continuing education through graduate school, there has been no real increase in Simpson students applying to grad school according to Career and Counseling Services and Simpson professors.

“I think the number of applications have been about the same,” said Lois Schultz, director of Career and Counseling Services. “Some reports are saying the economy is getting better,” Schultz said, “It’s not gloom and doom.”

Concern over the economy and a lack of job selection has driven many students to consider going on to graduate school hoping for better opportunities in a few years, according to stories in The Des Moines Register and The New York Times, among others. This trend, however, is not echoed at Simpson.

Most professors say they have not seen an increase in interest from their students either.

“I do not believe I have seen an increase in interest in graduate study due to concerns about the economy. Most of the students with whom I have spoken had been planning on graduate study for some time,” said Jane Kvetko, head of the Department of Social Sciences.

Heads of several other departments said they have not seen any increase in the amount of students applying to grad school.

Some areas of study consistently see numerous students extend their study.

“Over 50 percent of biology majors will go on to some type of school,” said Pat Singer, head of the Department of Biology and Environmental Sciences.

Todd Little, director of the Hawley Resource Center, said that different students that he has talked to are going to graduate school because they want to further their education, not because of the job market.

According to Singer though, it may not be more students applying to graduate school but more grad schools coming to students.

“Schools are offering to send their faculty to talk about their school,” Singer said.

For the most part, students have not allowed the economy to weigh heavily on their decision.

Senior Mike Johnson also applied to graduate school because he needed a higher degree.

“My main reason [to go to grad school] is because I want to go into forensic science and the only way I can get that is to go to grad school.”

Senior Sara Bieker said that most students have already made up their mind before the economy started to play a role.

“I made my decision when I was a junior so the economy didn’t play a role. The economy has the potential to make you think about what you want to do when you’re in higher education so I wouldn’t be surprised if it did have an effect on people’s decisions,” she said.