Degree inflation is coming for us

Via Unsplash.

Ariana Rodriguez | Contributing Writer

While browsing Indeed, you might’ve noticed job listings require advanced experience. A bachelor’s is now mandatory for entry-level jobs, causing current students and recent grads to struggle for career opportunities. This can all be explained thanks to degree inflation.

Since so many people are achieving degrees, the value of a degree goes down. It leads people with degrees to compete for jobs that previously never required one in the first place. It’s similar to how printing more money makes things worse. 

But when it comes to degrees, it interferes with our livelihoods. 

Degree inflation is frustrating, unfair and disrespectful towards all the students who work endless days and nights to provide a future for themselves and possibly even others. 

It shouldn’t be news that nobody is working towards fixing that issue.

Just like with financial inflation, it becomes our responsibility to manage this problem that shouldn’t exist in the first place. 

As seen below in the graph depicted by Forbes, a bachelor’s and above have lately become a requirement for many employers.

In addition, jobs requiring a Master’s degree paying less than $15 per hour have grown increasingly common on job search websites like Indeed or ZipRecruiter. However, this isn’t new. 

Degree inflation trends since the 1980s and during the Great Recession, when businesses had a labor excess to pick from. Like we’ve seen in the graph and many verified news outlets, this is an ongoing issue. It’s only a matter of time until the job market worsens.

This is why students must be aware and prepare themselves for these occurrences. 

I recommend networking and carefully deciding what major to pursue to combat this problem. It’s essential to choose a marketable degree, in demand for the job market and will guarantee a job. 

There are many students I know who major in business or STEM as a guaranteed way of making money since there isn’t much competition. I also recommend developing in-demand skills such as Word, Excel and achieving the emotional intelligence micro-credential. 

FIU even offers plenty of badges and micro-credentials that could put graduate students ahead, which is what I’m personally doing to combat this problem. 

The key is to put yourself ahead of the competition and remember that attending events, networking and achieving micro-credentials can take you closer to your goal.


The opinions presented within this page do not represent the views of the PantherNOW Editorial Board. These views are separate from editorials and reflect individual perspectives of contributing writers and/or members of the University community.

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