For Black Kids in America, a Degree Is No Guarantee

Black, Degreed...and Unemployed

The Atlantic's Janell Ross reports that Black recent college grads have unemployment rates twice as high as others with the same education

by The Atlantic, May 28, 2014

For Black Kids in America, a Degree Is No Guarantee

For Black Kids in America, a Degree Is No Guarantee

Black recent college grads twice as likely to be unemployed as those with the same education. 

In 2013, the most recent period for which unemployment data are available by both race and educational attainment, 12.4 percent of Black college graduates between the ages of 22 and 27 were unemployed. For all college graduates in the same age range, the unemployment rate stood at just 5.6 percent. The figures point to an ugly truth: Black college graduates are more than twice as likely to be unemployed.

"We absolutely aren't trying to discourage people from going to college," said John Schmitt, a senior economist at the Washington-based Center for Economic and Policy Research who coauthored the study. "College degrees do have value. But what we are trying to show here is that this is not about individuals, or individual effort. There is simply overwhelming evidence that discrimination remains a major feature of the labor market."

Schmitt pointed to a series of studies that have in recent years found that when trained sets of Black and White testers with identical resumes are sent on interviews, White men with recent criminal histories are far more likely to receive calls back than Black men with no criminal record at all.

Read it at The Atlantic.



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