How the Great Recession Impacted the Employment Prospects of Black College Graduates

department_of_educationA new report from the U.S. Department of Education examines the employment status of college graduates one year after they earned their bachelor’s degree. The data shows that in 2009, 12 percent of all African Americans who earned a bachelor’s degree in the 2007-08 academic year were unemployed. For Whites who had earned a bachelor’s degree in 2007-08, 8 percent were unemployed.

Of course, this was a time when the U.S. economy was in the doldrums. In 2001, only 5 percent of African Americans who had earned a bachelor’s degree in the 1999-2000 academic year were unemployed, compared to 4 percent of similar Whites. Thus, the major recession of 2008 appears to have had a much greater impact on the employment prospects for African American college graduates than for Whites with a college degree.

The report, New College Graduates at Work: Employment Among 1992–93, 1999–2000, and 2007–08 Bachelor’s Degree Recipients 1 Year After Graduation, may be downloaded by clicking here.


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