College Grad Hiring Blitz Hits Philly

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Anybody who graduated college in the past seven years should be jealous of the class of 2015. Just a few years ago, college grads were freaking out about not being able to find jobs. This year, they should be planning on living life outside of mom and dad’s house because the job market is wide open — especially in Philly.

Consider these numbers: The National Association of Colleges and Employers says employers plan to hire 9.6 percent more new graduates this year and job openings are up 50 percent from a year ago. Meanwhile, CareerBuilder reports that 65 percent of employers plan to hire recent college grads this year, up from 57 percent last year. One third will offer higher pay than last year, and 1 in 4 will pay $50,000 or more.

“This is the best year we’ve had in 7 or 8 years,” said Paul Harrington, a professor director of the Center for Labor Markets and Policy at Drexel University. He said there are about 1.7 applicants for every job, which matches pre-recession levels. (During the height of the recession, it was a frightening 7-to-1.)

In Philly, the professional, technical and managerial sector is booming, and the market is very strong for IT and financial consultants, said Harrington. Since Philly is an “eds and meds” stronghold, Harrington calls health care jobs “a good long-term bet” especially in booming areas like imaging and occupational therapy.

At Temple University, the number of job postings on the school’s alumni job board is up 24 percent, said Megan Panaccio director of corporate relations for the Center for Student Professional Development. Plus, there was a 30 percent increase in employers recruiting on campus this year, for a total of 94 companies.

“I am seeing more companies be proactive in their recruitment,” said Panaccio. “There’s more overall confidence to hire people and companies have the budgets to do so. People could be moving on, replacing people who retired. Or maybe they’re putting more of an emphasis on building the bench of new hires.”

Another offshoot of the college grad hiring blitz is the decrease in what Harrington calls “malemployment” — the amount of college grads taking jobs that don’t require college degrees.

“College grads don’t want to be unemployed so they take a job as a retail clerk for example,” he said. “The number of kids doing this will go down because they will have a much better chance of getting a job in their field.”

 

BizFeed: Amtrak Lawsuits Face $200M Hurdle

A crime scene investigator looks inside a train car after a train wreck, Tuesday, May 12, 2015, in Philadelphia. An Amtrak train headed to New York City derailed and crashed in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Joseph Kaczmarek)

After Tuesday’s Amtrak crash, expect plenty of lawsuits, but law states that damages will be capped at $200 million. (AP Photo/Joseph Kaczmarek)

1. Lawsuits a Certainty After Amtrak Crash, But Damages Capped at $200M

The News: In the wake of the Amtrak train crash, expect a slew of personal injury lawsuits against the company — especially considering that the train reportedly went double the speed limit and that Amtrak’s CEO said the company takes “full responsibility.” The first lawsuit comes from Amtrak employee Bruce Phillips who says he suffered brain trauma, body injuries and emotional stress, according to NBC10.

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No, It’s Not Time to Abolish Fraternities

It was a bright spring day in New York City. And the doorman was just minding his own business, watching the traffic go by on Park Avenue. My mission was to steal his hat.

John was my accomplice. We had a plan. I hid around the corner of the building while John casually strode toward the doorman, purposely looking lost. John had a map in his hand. He stopped the doorman and asked for directions.  And when the doorman looked at the map with John … I sprang into action. I ran down the block and before he knew what was happening I snatched his hat off his head and galloped away. John took off in the other direction. 10 minutes later and 10 blocks away, John and I re-grouped to gleefully inspect our treasure.  We got the hat.

Yes, we were pledging a fraternity. And, like today’s fraternity and sorority members, we were college-aged idiots. Read more »

Should We Ban Fraternities? Or Just Watch Them Destroy Themselves?

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At this point, we probably shouldn’t bother pretending that we’re shocked by the news coming out of Penn State. (Which is unfortunate, as shock makes great fuel for Internet opinion pieces. Outrage, thankfully, is still on the table.)

It’s not as if fraternities have much of a reputation to uphold lately. Just two weeks ago, we got a peek behind the scenes of the Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity at the University of Oklahoma, which apparently has absurdly racist and violent sing-alongs when they think no one is looking. Now, police are investigating Penn State’s Kappa Delta Rho for allegedly operating two private Facebook accounts that included nude pictures of unconscious women.

And yet, there is a part of me that’s surprised, if not shocked. Read more »

Bill Would Offer College Help to Ex-Foster Kids

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Foster children who “age out” of the system without family ties and support would get state assistance to attend college, under a bill introduced this week in the Pennsylvania House.

Such young adults “already suffer unique disadvantages compared with other students,”said Rep. David Hickernell, a Republican who is the bill’s prime sponsor. “While the General Assembly cannot replace parents, it can certainly help eliminate or greatly reduce the financial barriers to higher education for these students.”

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Swarthmore No. 3 on List of Top 10 Colleges With the Hottest Guys

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Shutterstock.com

Nearby Swarthmore College has earned the No. 3 slot on College Magazine’s top 10 list of the colleges with the hottest guys. The online publication says it came up with its list of winners by researching schools’ four-year gradation rates, varsity and intramural sports programs, popular Greek life and gym facilities, so it’s not all about looks and braun. An explanation on how Swarthmore got the No. 3 distinction:

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The Real Epidemic on College Campuses: Academic Dishonesty

While mattress-toting Columbia University student Emma Sulkowicz will be attending the State of the Union address tomorrow as the guest of Senator Kirsten Gillibrand to protest the epidemic of sexual assault on college campuses that’s been pretty thoroughly debunked, there’s another college trend that seems to be flying beneath the nation’s radar. It may not have the cachet of the aforementioned rape crisis, and nobody’s holding hearings or talking about it, but it does appear to be real, according to the latest statistics released by Penn.

Sexual assaults are up at Penn — from three incidents in the 2009-’10 school year among the 10,000-plus undergraduate body to eight in 2012-’13 and seven in 2013-’14, as you can see from this handy chart printed in the school’s Daily Pennsylvanian newspaper. In other words, the number of sexual assaults about doubled, though the numbers were very low. But read down a little further on the chart to the section labeled “Academic Integrity.” That number went from 44 incidents in 2009-’10 to 96 in 2012-’13 and 127 in 2013-’14. That’s right: The number of cheaters nearly tripled in the same time frame.

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Obama’s Community College Plan Would Be a Total Disaster

President Obama | Photo Jeff Fusco; piggy bank | Shutterstock.com

President Obama, photo Jeff Fusco |  piggy bank, Shutterstock.com

Obama’s dream plan to offer free community college tuition to students across the nation could work. The key word here is “could.” It would require a vast majority of community college systems to re-focus and re-think how they are currently handling their student populations and, to be frank, the nation’s potential community college students would need to re-focus and re-think what a college degree ultimately delivers.

However, given the “business model” that many community colleges are currently using, the Obama plan would be a total disaster. We’d simply be pumping out more students with more degrees that essentially mean nothing.  Read more »

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