Job Market Goes from Bad to Worse
Annual Survey of Journalism & Mass Communication Graduates
Graduates of the nation’s journalism and mass communication programs in the
spring of 2009 confronted a job market unlike any that graduates have encountered
in the nearly 25 years for which comparable data are available.
All indicators of the health of the market in 2009 and early 2010 showed declines
from a year earlier, which already had produced record low levels of employment.
Salaries remained unchanged for the fourth consecutive year, meaning that
graduates actually were receiving less money because of the effects of inflation.
Benefits packages also continued to get skimpier.
Responses from the graduates to the 2009 Annual Survey of Journalism & Mass
Communication Graduates reflected a real sense of frustration and desperation. One
student said that nothing he had done at the university prepared him “to deal with
this horrible economy.” His advice to 2010 students not yet graduated: “Stay in
school forever. It all goes down hill from here.”
Many of the graduates said that the jobs that were available required skills they
did not have or that they acquired on their own initiative.
“I had to fight to learn video storytelling as a print major,” one female bachelor’s
degree recipient said, “and I wouldn’t be prepared if I hadn’t forced my way into
The graduate survey produced one bit of good news: Graduates reporting on
their job searches in the late spring of 2010 were much more likely to have found a
full-time job than were graduates reporting at the end of 2009.