Report: 99% of Post-Recession Jobs Went to Those Who Went to College

Quartz: “Jobs have come back back in post-recession America—but they’re reserved almost exclusively for people who went to college. Georgetown University’s Center on Education and the Workforce put out an extensive report this week revealing that while the US created 11.6 million new jobs after the recession, 11.5 million of those went to individuals with at least some college education.”

“According to the report, the recession ‘decimated low-skill blue-collar and clerical jobs.’ Industries like manufacturing and construction have shrunk; office and administrative support positions—a primary source of work for non-college grads—have also dwindled, thanks to the rise of automation and digital information storage.”

FavoriteLoadingSave to Favorites
  • S1AMER

    Something doesn’t seem right about those numbers: Construction has been booming in recent years, with a large number of jobs. Are all the workers I see building houses (and some offices, and some retail buildings) everywhere mostly college grads? Or are they mostly people who don’t get counted (no papers)? Or is there something wrong with the numbers?

    • pisher

      A whole lot of off the books work. Mainly done by immigrants, and not just Mexicans. I used to room with a buddy of mine, an Irishman (here legally, I should mention)–he was doing all kinds of short-term off the books construction jobs. One was pouring concrete, and man that’s tough work. I woke up one morning, and heard him calling me–he couldn’t get up out of bed. His back had given out–the muscles protesting at being overworked. I had to go buy a heating pad. I guarantee you, all that work never ended up in any set of governmental statistics.

      So one way to boost those stats would be to crack down on contractors who are saving money by hiring non-union workers. Which to be sure, would be tough on some immigrants, documented or otherwise. But we’re supposed to want that, right? So how come the Republicans aren’t talking about that?

      In fact, how come they’re about to nominate a guy who is famous for hiring undocumented immigrants to build his fawlty towers?

      Do I need to spell it out?


      • liblib

        As a carpenter by trade, I can attest to the physical demands that you witnessed. Bernie also recognizes that it is beyond the pale to expect these people to work until 72. I can also speak to the underground economy of construction, and how the industry prays upon both naturalized and not to boost the bottom line.

        • pisher

          I don’t think it’s just Bernie Sanders saying that. Nor do I think he’s ever going to do anything about it. Anyway, he’s already almost 75, and was clearly hoping to go on working a really tough job into his 80’s, so that kind of undercuts the point. 🙂

          But we can agree on the other stuff–how do we fight it? By nominating and electing candidates who can win. And by keeping unions strong. Every time we lose an election because we wanted some dream candidate, we get weaker. We need to get tough. We need to WIN.

    • tcstao

      It looks like the numbers are net job growth (jobs created minus jobs destroyed). So it’s not like there were only 80,000 jobs available for high school diploma candidates, it’s just that there were only 80,000 more jobs created for these positions than were destroyed, i.e. employment was essentially flat in this period. If there had been net job losses in this segment of the workforce then one could have replaced the 99% in the headline by something over 100%.

    • Britam

      Here “Down South” there are a lot of ‘South of the Border’ construction workers, legal and otherwise. This is not a new phenomenon. I remember reading back in the Eighties no less, a handbook given to a Job Foreman by his employer, a mid sized commercial builder. It was a phrase book of English to Spanish. Being what it was, the book contained mostly construction related phrases. The kicker for me, and the reason I remember this so clearly, was the last page of the book. In bold letters it said; When first meeting ‘guest workers’, it is helpful to say: “No soy imigra,” which means “I am not Immigration.”
      On another front; building may be booming, but wages are actually, when basic inflation is factored in, regressing. Except for the surviving pockets of protected and or unionized workers, construction related fields have gained the stigma of being “jobs for chumps.”
      Working conditions have worsened over time as well. An example; recently, a Green project, a solar photovoltaic array, was announced. Hiring was begun. First, the wages were just below the top of the average construction pay scale for this region. So far, so good. Second, the hiring was outsourced to a headhunting ’employment agency.’ So, all ‘benefits’ were managed by said agency. Third, the schedule was to be ten hours a day, six days a week. Fourth, the climate here can be brutal in summer. Nineties and up to the low hundreds with high humidity is normal. Fifth, when this project is finished, one can either cut loose, or move on to the next project with the company, which offers no per diem or salary boost.
      Finally, the subject of the “official story” concerning employment figures is so tangled and, surprise, corrupt, that it would comprise an entire post in and of itself.

Read previous post:
New Low of 52% “Extremely Proud” to Be Americans

Ahead of the Fourth of July, a new Gallup survey shows a new low in patriotism since the dawn of...