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Nationwide Examine Finds Excessive Schoolers Keenly Conscious of Present In-Demand Jobs, Impacting Schooling Selections After Commencement

MINNEAPOLIS (Could 20, 2022)—At the moment’s excessive schoolers are keenly conscious of the affect the pandemic had on the job market and are evaluating their choices as they forge their path to a profession, in response to the newest Query The Quo Schooling Pulse survey. The latest nationwide research of 14-18-year-olds in the US, fielded in January, discovered three-quarters have heard about employee shortages, and greater than one-third usually tend to pursue an training or profession in an in-demand discipline.

“Essentially the most gorgeous discovering for me has been how insightful, intuitive and engaged this demographic is in relation to understanding the profession panorama, the affect of scholar debt and the choices out there to them within the present surroundings,” stated Jeremy Wheaton, president and CEO of ECMC Group. “At the moment’s college students have skilled the pandemic’s affect, they usually wish to forge their very own path—a path that’s shorter in length, extra inexpensive and connects on to a profession—particularly a profession in a discipline that wants staff.”

In keeping with this survey, two years into the COVID-19 pandemic, half of excessive schoolers are not contemplating four-year faculty and fewer than half imagine a four-year diploma will make them profitable. Greater than half are open to a path apart from four-year faculty, and due to the pandemic, one-third say they’re extra comfy with following a shorter pathway. Regardless of that, 85% really feel stress to pursue a four-year diploma.

As well as and regardless of lecture rooms largely returning to pre-pandemic experiences, lower than half really feel ready for his or her training after highschool.

The findings are from the newest iteration of ECMC Group’s Query The Quo Schooling Pulse survey, which has examined excessive schoolers’ attitudes about their future training and profession aspirations since earlier than the pandemic and all through. The 5 surveys of greater than 5,300 highschool college students ages 14-18, performed in partnership with VICE Media, befell between February 2020 and January 2022 and sought to uncover how teenagers are eager about and planning for his or her future training and careers amidst an ever-changing pandemic surroundings.

Teenagers imagine postsecondary training will not be a solution to discover a profession, however slightly to refine and pursue profession choices; count on employers to play a job of their ongoing training

Seventy-five % of excessive schoolers have a profession in thoughts and 74% imagine you will need to have their profession plans decided once they graduate from highschool. Additionally, 73% suppose a direct path to a profession is crucial in postsecondary training and 39% have taken lessons on profession exploration or have participated in a program to assist them decide future profession paths.

Teenagers additionally view postsecondary training as a lifelong endeavor and count on employers and the federal government to play a job. Eighty-six % imagine companies ought to help training by offering formal training and offering extra cash to repay scholar loans and 91% imagine the federal government ought to help training by offering extra cash to repay scholar loans and subsidizing/paying for training.

“Two years into the pandemic, and we’re seeing that the impacts on these college students seem like right here to remain,” Wheaton stated. “The stress they’re feeling comes from many instructions together with from society at giant, so it’s extra essential than ever that we create, present and spend money on high-quality training choices that meet their wants in addition to the wants of our financial system.”

Extra findings embody:

Highschool college students are approaching training and careers with in-demand fields in thoughts

  • 75% of teenagers have heard about workforce shortages
    • Frequent sources of this info embody social media (62%), mother and father/household (51%) and conventional information media (45%)
  • Teenagers are conscious of employee shortages in in-demand fields, a lot of which don’t require four-year levels: instructing, healthcare, human companies, hospitality, expert trades
  • 35% usually tend to pursue jobs within the present impacted, in-demand careers
  • 36% usually tend to pursue training centered on an impacted, in-demand profession

Gen Z stays open to pathways apart from four-year faculty

  • 51% of teenagers are contemplating attending a four-year faculty (20 share factors lower than in Could 2020)
  • 85% stated they really feel stress to pursue a four-year diploma, regardless of 52% saying they’re open to a special path
  • 63% stated they really feel stress from mother and father/guardians/household (a rise since September 2021)
  • 47% stated they really feel stress from society (a rise since September 2021)
  • 42% stated their post-high college training ought to final lower than 4 years, and 31% stated it ought to final two years or much less

But many don’t really feel prepared for the subsequent step

  • Solely 39% really feel that their highschool has ready them for postsecondary training
  • 46% need extra formalized studying all through their lifetime

Gen Z is connecting abilities—and never essentially levels—to jobs

  • 52% imagine they are often profitable with abilities they achieve from training attained in three years or much less
  • 58% say a skill-based training (e.g., commerce abilities, nursing, STEM, and so on.) is sensible in in the present day’s world
  • Practically one-third would favor to achieve abilities by way of a number of brief (one yr or much less) experiences over a lifetime vs. one lengthy training expertise (4 years or extra)
  • 81% stated studying the talents they have to be profitable is a crucial issue of their choice about training after highschool
  • Practically one-third would think about enrolling in profession and technical training if there was a assure that they might develop stronger abilities

Value continues to be a priority and an element within the decision-making course of

  • Greater than 63% stated the price of tuition and the quantity of scholar loans they would wish have been essential components in what they select to do after highschool
  • 59% fear about how they may pay for faculty (has remained regular for the previous two years)
  • 43% stated the price of faculty is a very powerful component of their training choice, outranking job placements, completion charges and faculty rankings

Profession and technical training (CTE) is turning into a extra seen possibility

  • A couple of-third imagine a CTE pathway can make them success
  • 54% of scholars are conscious of what profession and technical training is (13 percentage-point enhance since February 2020, constant since September 2021)
  • 33% stated they’d be extra more likely to pursue profession and technical training if there was a stronger assure of a job after commencement, and 28% stated they might if it was considered as helpful as a four-year diploma (constant since January 2021)

Socioeconomic variations in mindsets could exacerbate revenue inequality

  • 19-percentage-point distinction between college students from low-income households and people from high-income households who imagine training after highschool is critical (50% vs. 69%)
  • 34-percentage-point distinction between college students from low-income households and people from high-income households who’re contemplating four-year faculty (40% vs. 74%)
  • College students from low-income households usually have much less entry to profession exploration assets
  • Incomes potential is considerably extra essential to college students from high-income households in comparison with these from low-income households

“Teenagers proceed to inform us that real-world experiences in training will make them profession success,” stated Wheaton. “Nevertheless, regardless of their perspective on the roles they wish to enter, they clearly want extra details about what it takes to get there. Solely by working collectively throughout policymakers, companies, educators and learners can we illuminate all of the viable pathways that result in promising futures with upward profession trajectories.”

The surveys are a part of ECMC Group’s Query The Quo marketing campaign, which goals to empower college students to be taught in regards to the varied larger training choices out there and to take the profession path that’s proper for them.

Survey Methodology
ECMC Group, in partnership with VICE Media, performed 4 nationwide Query The Quo Schooling Pulse surveys. The primary survey of 1,177 highschool college students was performed Feb. 25-March 2, 2020; the second survey of 1,025 highschool college students was performed Could 14-20, 2020; the third survey of 1,001 highschool college students was performed Jan. 4-19, 2021; the fourth survey of 1,052 highschool college students was performed Sept. 20-Oct. 3, 2021; the fifth survey of 1,062 highschool college students was performed Jan. 23-Feb. 11, 2022.

About ECMC Group

ECMC Group is a nonprofit company centered on serving to college students succeed by creating, offering and investing in modern instructional alternatives. Headquartered in Minneapolis, ECMC Group and its household of firms are centered on advancing instructional alternatives by way of monetary instruments and companies; nonprofit profession training; and modern, impactful and mission-aligned funding for applications to assist college students obtain their tutorial {and professional} targets and to deal with the way forward for work. To be taught extra, go to

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