Paying off student loans, securing a job and wiping compromising social media posts have new grads panicking
Welcome to the real world.
Graduating from college is a momentous occasion worthy of celebration and praise — but now many grads leaving their campus bubbles are just realizing that being in school isn’t actually all that bad. Enter adult problems like landing a job that will pay for housing — not to mention those student loans that covered most of their expenses for the past four years.
And even once armed with a degree, the promise of pursuing one’s dreams doesn’t always go according to plan. Here are five things that the Class of 2018 has every right to be totally freaked out about.
Getting a job
The National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) predicts that the hiring projection for college grads has dropped, and employers plan to hire 1.3% fewer graduates from the class of 2018 than they did from last year’s pool — marking the first hiring decrease in eight years. And so a study of 2,500 college graduating seniors has found that one in four feel unprepared to enter the job market. More than a quarter (28%) of respondents worry about having to take a temporary job for the immediate future, while 82% remain optimistic that something they actually want to do will come along. But there are some companies that pride themselves on hiring fresh grads, such as Clif Bar & Company founder Gary Erickson. “The enthusiasm and fresh perspective that recent college graduates bring to this company strengthens our culture and our business,” he told Moneyish.
Student loans could put your dream job on hold. A new Clif Bar survey finds that 56% of adults ages 18 to 34 believe that debt from their education limits their ability to pursue a job or career that they find fulfilling. Similarly, 74% indicated that their financial situation has a large impact on taking a job that would make them happy, and 63% admitted they felt the need to take the first job they were offered in order to pay off their debt. With 44.2 million Americans shouldering $1.48 trillion in total U.S. student loan debt, and the average monthly student loan payment at $351 for those ages 20 to 30, new grads face an uphill battle in terms of paying off debts.
According to a survey conducted by GoDaddy, 32% of grads plan to move back to their childhood homes after graduation, and 57% wouldn’t consider taking a job more than 200 miles from their current location. The rent’s just too damn high. Millennials in San Francisco pay an average of $3,000 per month for a one bedroom apartment, adding up to $36,000 a year. And the average 2017 college grad made $49,785 annually, according to the Society for Human Resource Management, which barely covers housing in San Francisco for the year.
Beware of oversharing. Though Facebook, Twitter and Instagram often go hand in hand with young adults, they must find a way to balance how much personal information they put out there. GoDaddy reports that more than 43% of grads admit to having posted social content that they’d be worried about an employer seeing, which is why half of college seniors have already changed their profile privacy settings, and 42% have deleted old photos. You can work the web to your advantage, however, as 49% of those who had jobs lined up before donning their caps and gowns had created professional websites to house their resumes to catch employers’ eyes.
College comes with a built-in social scene, so graduating, moving and undergoing other life changes can mean friendships fall by the wayside. Research suggests that having friends can boost mental health — but it can be notoriously difficult to forge new friendships in your twenties. Falling into a new adulting routine can also make it tricky to find time to be social. Refinery29 suggests creating a new social network by volunteering for a cause you believe in, or signing up for a group exercise class. A recent University of Kansas survey that it takes about 40 to 60 hours of time spent together in the first few weeks of meeting for people to form a casual friendship. For friends to become good or best friends, it takes about 200 or more hours together — which adds up to more than an entire week. And though it may seem like a natural response to befriend coworkers, it turns out workplaces are seeing a decline in the amount of close friendships forming at the office.
© 2018 Dow Jones & Company, Inc. All Rights Reserved