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Unemployment Rate Continues to Rise for High School Dropouts, Fall for College Graduates

“In general, it’s long been the case that people with a college degree have an easier time finding a job, and make more money, than those who have just a high school degree,” the article reads. “But in the past year or so, as the job market has improved slowly and in fits and starts, the gap between education levels has become especially stark. That’s a trend that experts expect to continue as the job market increasingly comes to rely on more skilled workers and has fewer options for people with just a high school degree.”

The unemployment rate for high school dropouts rose from 12.5 percent to 13.0 percent in May 2012 based on the latest numbers from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Prospects were only slightly better for individuals with a high school diploma, for whom the unemployment rate rose from 7.9 percent to 8.1 percent. At the same time, the unemployment rate for college graduates decreased from 4.0 percent to 3.9 percent.

A recent article on MSNBC examines the trends in the job market and finds that individuals increasingly need some education beyond a high school diploma to land a job in today’s economy. Based on the May 2012 data, the article notes that the number of employed high school graduates actually fell slightly from 34 million in May 2011 to 33.9 million in May 2012. Meanwhile, the number of college graduates with jobs rose from 44.8 million to 46.4 million during the same time.

“In general, it’s long been the case that people with a college degree have an easier time finding a job, and make more money, than those who have just a high school degree,” the article reads. “But in the past year or so, as the job market has improved slowly and in fits and starts, the gap between education levels has become especially stark. That’s a trend that experts expect to continue as the job market increasingly comes to rely on more skilled workers and has fewer options for people with just a high school degree.”

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