Is Your College Major One of the Nation’s Most Underemployed?

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The unemployment rate may have seen some improvement since the dog days of the last recession but things turned a little worse this past month when unemployment benefit claims rose above 300,000 again. If you’re in college, you may want to start worrying about it now especially if you’re working on a major that may not have many jobs after your graduation.

Forbes looked at the numbers and put together a list of the college majors that had the most “underemployed” work force and the results might surprise you. Most won’t. We’re looking at you, liberal arts degree holders.

The magazine used the surveys at Payscale to construct their list of underemployed majors, which came directly from reports of graduates with degrees. You might be surprised to learn that criminal justice topped the list of unemployed majors with a whopping 62.4 percent reporting that they were unable to find a job with their degree. That might sound like a shock considering that police departments always need officers and person. However, it may have more to do with the proliferation of the degree since it’s one that’s offered at both private and public universities as well as many for-profit colleges where degrees are worth less in the eyes of the workforce.

The rest of the top five weren’t as surprising. The other majors that rounded out the top five include business management & administration, health care administration, general studies and sociology. All of the top five entries had a workforce where more than half couldn’t find a job with their degree. We would call that stunning but considering today’s wintry employment climate especially among college graduates, we’re sorry to say that we’re not all that surprised.

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