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Where Are All the Millennials?

The number of #millennials entering the workforce has gotten lower every year, so what are they doing after #graduation?


“Selfish and entitled” is the label given to millennials by (some) baby boomers, so why would they want to join the workforce right after graduation? There has been a surge in other opportunities (or experiences) that millennials are taking advantage of instead of starting a 40-hour work week at a corporate job.


According to Newsweek:

“Contrary to their reputation for hopping from one position to another, millennials are capable of staying in a job—it’s just that most of them have not had that luxury due to repeated layoffs in recent years.”


Millennials have a reputation for #FOMO (fear of missing out), so instead of “working,” what are they doing?


Higher Education

Many are pursuing #Masters, or even #Doctorate degrees. The Huffington Post pointed out that with the decrease in the current job market, millennials are staying in school for longer periods of time, which can result in an “uptick” in salary when they do join the workforce.


According to a study by the Pew Research Center:

“Millennials with a master's degree are earning 23 percent more than their counterparts in 1984. Higher education institutions need to prepare students for a master's course and offer robust graduate programs in order to attract great students. For many millennial students, learning no longer ends with a bachelor's.”



A relatively booming economy has made traveling as a millennial much easier and cheaper than in previous years.


A study by Boston Consulting Group found that:

“Millennials in the U.S. value diversity, embrace a global perspective, and are open to new experiences.”


This generation has a desire for exploration and aren’t going to the typical sun and sand destinations; instead they’re heading off the beaten path. Hiking in South America or backpacking around Europe to stay in hostels are becoming extremely popular.


#Working Abroad

As traveling is on the rise, so are the opportunities for working abroad. It may have started as leisure travel, but millennials are finding more reasons to stay for work internationally.


The Atlantic surveyed students on travel plans; one student said:

“Teaching English in Korea was the highest-paying job I could find after graduating, but the flipside to a bad job market is that it gave me a chance to explore something I probably would have never done otherwise.”


The U.S. economy is recovering, but for new grads it’s still difficult to find full-time employment without experience. Combining travel and work seems to be a good alternative for many entering the work-force.


#Part-Time Work

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data shows there are now 6 million Americans who actively choose to work part-time. And their numbers are on the rise, up 12% since 2007.


As many millennials prepare for graduation, trying to figure out what they want to do or where to go is a heavy-weighing question. It seems scary, but part-time employment could be a solid answer. Plenty of companies are now offering part-time positions because statistics continue to highlight a 9 -5 job as a dying concept.


A Bloomberg article describes this perfectly by saying

“The perfect job isn’t one job at all. It’s a mix. They’re saying, ‘I’d rather compose my perfect work week as a cocktail instead of drinking it straight'.”


Whether you are pursuing a career as a professional traveler, or just aren’t sure where to go right out of college—there are many options for part-time #gigs all over. Search Jobs2Careers for ideas in your area!

Last Updated: August 4, 2017
About the author

Kelly Love Johnson

Kelly Love Johnson is Content Strategist for Jobs2Careers. She's also a shower singer, TV watcher, pop culture junkie, and habitual smirker. She's passionate about helping people find their dream jobs and closing the wage gap. Her book, Skirt! Rules for the Workplace: An Irreverent Guide to Advancing Your Career, was published by Rowman & Littlefield in 2008.