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Infographic How students can solve the problem of Unemployment by Entrepreneurship | Case Study: Student Employment Gap in US

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As per a recent report, U.S. employers added 96,000 jobs in August, a figure that points to the economy’s persistent weakness and slowing prospects for the unemployed. As it may be seen, the unemployment rate declined in August, but not for a good reason as the US government doesn’t count people as unemployed if they’ve stopped looking for a job. [Article continues after Infographic]

With upcoming elections in November, here’s a milestone that’s difficult for Obama to brag about: There are 133.3 million Americans working at present, approx. 261,000 short of the number when he was inaugurated in January 2009. At this year’s pace of job creation, payrolls would return to that level in October, and the job totals would be released on Nov. 2, i.e. four days before the election.

Owing to the unemployment related issues, an increasing number of students have realized that a job cannot be attained only upon a degree from graduation. The students believed that the education system will provide a job after graduation if they work hard. Moreover, companies preferred to hire most of their own interns into full time positions. Unfortunately, such practices are becoming uncommon due to various reasons, including economic limitations and global competition.

Based on a study by Millennial Branding, of 225 employers using Experience Inc.’s data pool of over 100,000 US companies, uncovering the student employment gap, skill requirements, and sources of hire for the class of 2012, 91% of employers think that students should have between one and two internships before they graduate, yet 50% haven’t hired any interns in the past six months. Students that have the required internships haven’t received job offers from companies since 79% of employers have hired 30% or fewer interns into full-time positions. Furthermore, 87% of companies think that internships should last at least three months for students to gain enough experience when most internships last around two months long.This employment gap is one of the reasons why half of all recent grads are jobless or underemployed as reported by The Associated Press.

It would not be false to say that companies value entrepreneurship over internship experience as there is a lot more to learn from a business. A lot of internships are paid and students are made to do clerical work, whereas entrepreneurs get decent experience of various aspects of a business, including, but not limited to, sales, marketing, product developing, etc.

So, this could clearly be a possible solution to the growing problem of unemployment. Students who are not able to get internships should start their own business or a side project, both of which can act as an internship. Even if the business fails, it will be a learning experience and if the business is successful, the students don’t have to worry about the full-time job anymore.

As a landmark example, the story of Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook are known and cherished by everyone. He dropped out of college after creating Facebook: a social media super power used by people across the world. While still a student, Zuckerberg founded and coded, along with three other classmates, the social networking site that made him the one of the youngest billionaire. Another great example is the story of Michael Dell, who, while still in college as a pre-med student, started a business upgrading computers in his dorm. That small business turned into a larger one, working with the state of Texas to upgrade their computer systems, and eventually into a small office building after Dell dropped out of school to focus on the business. By 1992, Dell was the youngest CEO to ever have his company ranked in the Fortune 500.

While discussing college entrepreneurs, one cannot ignore Larry Page and Sergey Brin, founders of Google, who met while in college working on their PhDs in mathematics and computer science. While doing research for their dissertations, they became fascinated by search engines and data mining, eventually suspending their studies to focus on starting up a business. One run in a small garage, today the business is worth billions and is used by people worldwide.

Bill Gates founded Microsoft after dropping out of school, which dominates the home computer software market and has now expanded into video games, hardware and search engines.

Employers always prefer employees who are innovative and have a capability to think outside-the-box. Having an entrepreneurial experience conveys to the prospective employer that the employee is self-guided, self-motivated, a creative problem solver and unafraid of failure. In addition, if a student decides to start a technology based business, they can further add credibility and value to their profile byfiling patentsfor various technological features.

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Contributors: Prity Khastgir andRahul Dev

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