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The college advantage: Weathering the economic storm

Carnevale, A. P., Jayasundera, T. & Cheah, B. The college advantage: Weathering the economic storm. Georgetown Public Policy Institute, Washington, DC, 2012. Pages: 52.

Arguing against the prevailing notion of a decrease of value of college degrees, the report provides evidence from the national context of the United States that workers in the labour market with a degree have fared much better than others since the start of the recession in 2007. Based on a thorough evaluation of available data, the authors show that although the recession has led to a decline in jobs, many of the jobs have since been recovered and a majority of them went to people with a post-secondary qualification. This holds across all job types even including the blue collar sectors.

Additionally, the authors explore the role of gender and post-secondary education in the current labour market. While the male college workers were hit the hardest during the recession; the female labour market in general has increasingly shifted towards degree-requiring jobs. Interestingly enough, around the same time (since 2006), men have registered a higher increase in post-secondary education enrolment than women, which was not the case in the past.

Georgetown Public Policy Institute