The bad news: The poor United States economy has bumped the unemployment rate for young adults under the age of 24 to a whopping 16.7 percent, according to a recent article in the Wall-Street Journal.

For 29 of the past 32 months, that unemployment figure has hovered above 17 percent.

Young adults are working at jobs in which they are overqualified, and saving money by living with their parents. Not exactly an ideal situation.

The good news: The 16.7 percent unemployment figure takes a significant hit with young adults who have a college degree. Great news for students enrolled in online degree programs.

That 16.7 unemployment rate dwindles to 7.7 percent for young adults with a college degree.

Your chances of landing a job more than double when you can flaunt that college degree. Thinking of going to school online because of the flexibility and convenience it offers? It's well worth the investment.

One of the most important steps after deciding to pursue your college degree is choosing a major. The Wall-Street Journal conducted a poll and asked if you had to choose a college major today, what would it be?

In a tough economy, there's good news for Computer Science and Engineering students: Science Tech/Engineering/Math dominate the choices of five majors with 57.6 percent of the poll's votes. The other four majors were Business (27.8 percent), Politics/Economics (8.4 percent), Humanities (4.5 percent) and Education (1.6 percent).

What would be your choice?

We know from an earlier blog entry that computer science jobs pay well, an added motivator for getting into the field.

Additionally, the two most popular choices on the WSJ poll, Computer Science and Business, are actually the two most popular online degrees at the moment.

So yes, the unemployment rate for young adults is an alarming percentage that can easily cause unwanted stress. But if you put yourself in the best position to succeed, you may avoid that 16.7 percent of young adults looking for work faster than you think.

Here's some suggestions:

  • Enroll in an online degree program and earn a college degree. Chances for unemployment drop from 16.7 percent to 7.7 percent.
  • Use as many avenues as possible to search for job opportunities, even social media channels.
  • If you're unsure on a career, consider a field with a secure future and an opportunity for financial growth.
  • Keep your resume up to date on a daily basis and avoid scary resume mistakes.
  • Make a lasting impression by wowing the employer on your next job interview.
  • And of course, have some fun along the way.

Subscribe to the Grantham University blog for updates on the Marine Corps birthday (Thursday) and Veterans Day (Friday) later this week.

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