The strongest job markets for college graduates in mid-sized cities include California-Lexington Park in Maryland and Hanford-Corcoran, California. In large cities, recent graduates will likely find themselves in-demand in Merced and Bakersfield, California.
On the other hand, a college degree is unlikely to get you in the door in mid-sized cities like Ithaca, New York, or Iowa City, Iowa. Neither will a degree stand out in cities like Fort Collins, Colorado, or Ann Arbor, Michigan.
When most or all of the applicants an employer hears from are college-educated, he or she will “inflate” their requirements with additional degrees and experiences, Scott said. As a result, many prospective employees can’t keep up with the credentials that are being demanded.
The answer then is not to continue to send more people to traditional colleges, the researchers conclude, but to expand work-based, more affordable education paths.
Employers, for their part, should move toward skill-based hiring, and put less weight on the lengthening lines and letters found on resumes, they write.
More from Personal Finance:
Getting Medicare Part D right
Two ways to defray this retirement risk
Defrauded student borrowers to get debt relief at last