BY: Adam Gavriel

As the unemployment rate in the United States remains stagnant hovering around 8%, the demographic being hit the worst by this economy are young workers from 15-24. A report released on July 10thfrom CNN Money revealed that in the United States 14.8% of youths were neither employed nor in school or training programs. That number was even higher at 18.6% among OECD countries including Mexico, Japan, and much of Europe.

The same article predicts that among those countries (which include the United States) the unemployment rate will not dip below 7.7% by the end of the calendar year of 2013. This is somewhat of a discouraging reveal considering that the unemployment rate is currently 7.9% As the economy continues to stagnate and falter, there appears to be no greener pastures in sight according to sources.

“It is imperative that governments use every possible means at their disposal to help jobseekers, especially young people, by removing barriers to job creation and investing in their education and skills,” said OECD Secretary-General Angel Gurría, presenting the report in Paris.

Unfortunately what Mr. Gurría says is easier said than done. The price of secondary education in the United States continues to rise. Many college applicants simply cannot afford the top-end universities that they might have attended had the economy not be so horrific. Syosset Central School District on Long Island, which is notorious for having a very high graduation rate, as well as sending their students to higher education (99% almost every year) has seen the number of graduates attending Ivy League schools drop in recent years. In 2009, 62 graduates went on to Ivy League study programs. In 2010, that number dropped to only 40.

Of course you don’t have to attend an Ivy League program to be successful, or not be part of the 14.8% of unemployed youth, however when Ivy League potential students take the spots in “lesser” universities, other students will need to look elsewhere for secondary education. And this is not only happening at the college level, but the graduate level as well. Less and less college graduates are opting for graduate schools in the law and medical fields, contributing to the 14.8% number that we see today.

Currently a member of this demographic I’ve been lucky enough to remain employed from the age of 16-22 through various employment opportunities. I’ve been told many times that while you’re young is the best time to take risks. Many of my friends are looking into entrepreneurial adventures while others continue to search for full-time employment. However it’s while you’re young that you can afford to “waste time.” Without too many bills to pay, opportunity costs are at an all-time low for members of this demographic. I encourage my fellow 15-24 year olds to not be afraid to try something. I don’t think you’ll be the next Mark  Zuckerberg, but it can never hurt to try.

If you’re not much of a risk-taker, we encourage you here at Crossroads Consulting to start your search for full-time employment with us. We’ll be with you every step of the way from optimizing your resume to getting you ready for your interview. Although most of our nationwide job opportunitiesare for executive level positions, we have an expansive network of professionals and really recommend you get in contact with us whenever you can.

Remember at Crossroads Consulting, “We’re putting the ‘human’ back into ‘human resources.’”

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