College degrees and job experience

Is it true that employers won’t hire anyone that has a college degree backed up with no job experience?

I think it probably depends on the degree.

There are a lot of liberal arts majors out there making fries.

Life is short. Make fun of it.

Also depends on the job in question.

I recently hired a college graduate with limited on-the-job experience because:

a) She was willing to work for the pay we were offering.

b) She was intelligent enough to grasp the concept of the job.

c) The completion of a degree program in and of itself indicates some ability to persevere and apply intellect to problem solving.

I have a friend who has a degree in Electrical Engineering. He got a job fresh out of college working in the computer room of an insurance company, and soon after wound up in charge of it. Very little to do with the degree, but a lot to do with ability.

Now, if you’re asking how hard it is to find a job within your chosen field, well, that’s not quite as easy.

I know you understand what you heard me say, but what you don’t understand is what I said is not necessarily what I meant.

Is isn’t? :frowning: What do you mean by that?

As Melatonin said, that depends on the degree. And also on the particular field. I have no doubt there is no shortage of jobs for which a college graduate would technically be over-qualified, even with a Liberal Arts degree. :slight_smile: (But I sometimes doubt the fry cooks at my local Mickey D’s have graduated from anywhere.)

There are some fields where openings are readily available at entry level, where entry level requires a degree. But in some instances there may be a surfeit of candidates, making it harder to land a job that has any particular relevance to the degree just earned. This is part of what happened to the friend I described in my last post.

Which is, of course, entirely dependent on what degree one earns and what kind of job one is seeking - to say nothing of what area (geographical) in which one is looking.

A number of years ago I was in the position of interviewing job candidates for my employer, a (large) computer company. I interviewed and subsequently accepted quite a few people fresh out of college with no previous job experience. So yeah, it’s quite possible.

The way it worked was that somebody else made the decision of who to even fly in, based on a telephone pre-screening to weed out the ones who didn’t know a mutex from a hash algorithm. Most of the ones who I ended up seeing were fresh out of (pretty good) tech universities. My part of the process was to interview them for technical skills in the computer engineering field. The fresh-from-univ types we hired seemed to be a mix of about 70% bachelors and 30% masters degrees - I think I might have talked to one PhD along the line somewhere.

The interviewing happened about once/twice a month for a few years. I did it until a commandment came down from upper management that we (the interviewers) could only hire applicants of certain races. I refused to participate in the process after that point as that conflicted with my personal ethics.

peas on earth

If employers would not hire college grads with no “job experience,” a college degree would have the general effect of making a person unemployable. That’s clearly not the case, as a moment’s thought on your part would have made clear.

Unless you meant “related” job experience, in which case yes, that’s desirable but not necessary. Every employer wants to hire a 21-year-old with 10 years experience but it just does not work that way. Employers cannot afford to be that choosy these days, as the labor market is the tightest it has been in decades.

As others have pointed out, some degrees are more marketable than others. These tend to be high-demand fields in which the prospective employers are falling all over themselves to hire warm bodies.

College degree or no, if employers did not hire people without prior experience, nobody would have any.

I have an excellent college education with a great school. No one ever asked to see my diploma, though. ALso, I can’t figure that it ever got me a job. That was the idea for the time, early 80’s though. Get a diploma, get a job.

It’s hard to convince people to see past my deafness that I can do the job just as well as anyone else.

The higher the degree, the worse the “no experience” label gets. So get some short jobs between degrees, even if you want a graduate degree.

Remember also that you can’t generalize from a trend or a statistic to an individual. All kinds of things can happen that depend on things in addition to your credentials.

I’m about to begin my 20th year in a technical career that is wholly unrelated to my degree. At the time I graduated I’d never even once considered working in oil and gas. Three weeks later I was a geophysicist-in-training. There was an acute shortage in the market at the time and the company that hired me looked past my degree and saw that I had plenty of math, physics, chemistry etc… Of course, it was aa few years before they thought I knew what I was doing.

I have two friend who are Systems Administrators. Not support techs; they’re are the IT top dogs @ their firms. Neither one has a computer science related degree (ironically, one has a geophysics degree). The demand in that area grew so fast it outstripped supply and employers were forced to look beyond the surface.

I don’t have any numbers, so I’ll just add that manny of my friends are involved in careers that have very little to do with what the studied in school. And a few have shifted gears completely in mid-life. One of my dear friends decided at 39 to become an MD; she’s currently in her last year of med school - I think she’s going to get there.

That actually sort of makes sense. Sys admins are not expected to be able to, say, design the next generation of CPU, or architect a major new CAD application, so a comp-sci degree isn’t as applicable as one might think at first. And many people with comp-sci degrees would, I think, make only so-so sysadmins. Just MHO - at our company, I think probably most of the sysamins are not comp-sci people. They’re all good at their jobs though, and that’s what counts.

peas on earth

Makes sense, bantmof.

My point, though, was that neither of these people’s college education was directed at teaching them anything about system administration (the other one has a history degree - take heart liberal arts people!).

In my recent college-graduating-and-job-hunting experience, I’ve had interviewers ask me if I’ve ever had ANY job. Which I did: various odd summer-and-part-time jobs. Employers want people who are willing to accept responsibility - and having ANY job can demonstrate that.

But many employers also want related job experience. But (see above posts) it totally depends on the field you’re in. Internships, or volunteer work, can count as “job experience.”
I’ve even seen some “entry-level” jobs, though, that required some previous experience. I don’t know what that was all about - probably some highly technical field.

There are other jobs, of course, where they prefer that you DON’T have any related experience. They want to train you themselves - they don’t want any bad habits.

Totally depends on the field, the level of employment desired, and the specific job.

Sucks to your assmar.

You all are helping me a lot. Thanks to everyone. I had no idea that it’s possible to go 180 and have a career totally unrelated to what your degree is.

I forgot to mention this, the degree I’m trying to get is in computer science. Should I have no problem getting a job with this degree?

I wouldn’t sweat it. There’s a lot of demand now in this field. Of course, “comp-sci” degrees come in all manner of flavors from your 2-bit community colleges to your MIT’s and Caltechs, but given a reasonable quality university coupled with an acceptable acedemic record, you shouldn’t have anything to worry about. I think there is plenty of demand at the moment. It is a bit scary before you actually have said job in hand, but they are out there! :slight_smile:

peas on earth

I wrote, “acceptable acedemic record”…

… clearly something I lacked in the subject of spelling :slight_smile:

peas on earth

Ah, we all do that, bant…


Haven’t you guys ever been given the test question:
Q.) Two women candidates are all that remain for a job. The first woman has an excellent working background and tons of experience. The second woman has an excellent educational background. Perfect GPA, Bachelors, Masters and Doctorate degrees. Either woman would probably perform the job equally as well. Who does the Personell Manager hire?

A.) The one with the bigger tits, of course!