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North Dakota is Middle of the Pack in Need for Degrees

PHOTO: There are thousands of opportunities for college graduates searching for work in North Dakota, but a new report puts the state in the middle of the pack when it comes to online job postings that require a degree. Photo credit: Luke Jones/Flickr.
PHOTO: There are thousands of opportunities for college graduates searching for work in North Dakota, but a new report puts the state in the middle of the pack when it comes to online job postings that require a degree. Photo credit: Luke Jones/Flickr.
March 30, 2015

BISMARCK, N.D. – There are thousands of opportunities for college graduates searching for work in North Dakota, but a new report puts the state in the middle of the pack when it comes to online job postings that require a degree.

North Dakota is ranked 25th in the report by the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce, and the most employment opportunities are for college grads with degrees in science, technology, engineering and math.

Tony Carnevale, the report's lead author and the center’s director, says the national trend is a higher demand for college graduates.

"The texture of what employers are looking for is changing, in the sense that they're much more focused on specialization and degree specialization,” he stresses. “They care what you majored in in college, as much as they care whether or not you went."

The report assessed jobs requiring four-year college degrees, and concludes that overall, the sheer number of jobs posted shows that the economy has recovered.

Government-listed positions were not part of the report.

Carnevale notes another trend is in sales jobs, which traditionally have not required a four-year college degree. Now, two-thirds of sales jobs require a college degree.

"And a fair share of them – half, roughly – are selling medical or industrial technology and equipment,” he points out. “You're selling to experts, you've got to be one."

The best states for college graduate jobs are in Massachusetts, Delaware and Washington. The worst are South Carolina, Rhode Island and West Virginia.


John Michaelson, Public News Service - ND