Our world has been turned upside down by a virus that is affecting all aspects of life: our freedom, our education, our relationships, and our jobs.

The global workforce is hit by a hurricane

Today, the job market and economy are barely recognizable, with millions of people losing their jobs either permanently or temporarily. An analysis conducted by the Institute of Women’s Policy Research shows us that women lost more jobs than men in almost all sectors of the job market. In this “most severe crisis since World War II,” the hospitality and leisure businesses, as well as their employees were hit particularly hard. In total, the coronavirus has affected 81% of the global workforce, which means 4 out of 5 people have been affected by the consequences the virus had on jobs.

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To be counted as unemployed, an individual must be effectively searching for an occupation.

We ought to likewise remember that some people who have lost their jobs are not currently looking for another one, and so are considered to have dropped out of the labor force.

The harsh reality remains that once the effects of the virus slow down, and slowly, businesses start to reopen, the rehiring of employees will occur at a slower rate.

Graduating without a plan

At the beginning of 2020, graduating seniors were preparing for the next exciting chapter in their lives, arranging their future jobs, preparing for an internship, etc. Now, all their plans have been hit by a hurricane.

Searching for a job right after college is already challenging. Now try doing that in the middle of a worldwide pandemic and economic meltdown. Jobs on and off campus, as well as internships, were taken away from the students’ hands. The internship opportunities that were going to add the final touch to their impressive resumes now remains only a dream.

This instability in the job market leaves the students in an unstable situation as well. The ones who already had a job or an internship figured out remain unsure whether they will still be able to go ahead with the plan or not. And the ones who were still searching have been forced to temporarily pause the hunt. Their dreams of becoming financially independent from their parents may have to be placed on hold for a while longer.

What’s the secret to finding a job during these times? It is advised for the graduating seniors to remain flexible. It will take a great deal of patience searching for a job; keeping your expectations high can only have you fall into a black hole full of hopelessness. This isn’t a time to be picky, grasping any opportunity that comes your way seems like the only suitable thing to do during a pandemic. It is expected for some degrees to be hit harder than others. Even without a world crisis going around, students majoring in humanities always have a harder time finding a job, with the presence of the virus, it has only gotten harder for them.

Is your academic degree your magic wand?

An academic degree doesn’t guarantee a job, but what it does guarantee is the possibility of one, especially during a time of a worldwide pandemic.

Even though the severe effects that the coronavirus had on the job market have affected all kinds of people from all types of background, unemployment is hitting workers without a college degree the hardest.

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It is no doubt that getting a master’s and a PhD has a greater value than just a bachelor’s degree. However, as much as the academic degree counts so does the professional work experience. Now more than ever, whichever job you’re applying to, you have to make sure your application stands out. Showing that alongside a degree, you pushed yourself to go beyond a person who only completed college can only affect you in a positive way.

A degree also represents the experiences you had during your time at university. Alongside teaching the subject, universities also help students develop skills that vary from critical thinking and creativity all the way to leadership and emotional intelligence. These skills mean just as much as your knowledge of the subject when searching for a job.

Post-coronavirus, those with a degree in higher education will hold an advantage. Now more than ever, an academic degree has become a necessity rather than an accessory.

Lara Aksu
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