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September 04, 2002 - Image 8

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 2002-09-04

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8 - The Michigan Daily - Wednesday, September 4, 2002
More joblessness means
less chances for students

By Christopher Johnson
Daily Staff Reporter
Although most students at this time of year may primarily
concern themselves with adjusting to the demands of their
class schedule, a recent report suggests that those preparing
to search for a job should also focus their attention on their
intended career.
The U.S. Department of Labor released a report in August
indicating that the unemployment in the nation remains at
5.9 percent, the highest rate since the economic boom of the
The economic insecurity could present a challenge to stu-
dents who will soon face the job market.
Richard Curtin, director of the Survey of Consumers,
attributed the high unemployment rate to the reduced flow
of capital at the business level.
"Business has cut back on investment spending and labor
investment over the past year or so," he said.
Despite the lag in the economy, Curtin said an unem-
ployment rate of 5.9 percent is comparatively less than
the rates of 7 percent in 1990 or 11 percent in 1992.
Although students may have considerable difficulty in the
search for a career, several organizations within the Univer-
sity, like Career Planning and Placement, can guide them in
their hunt for a job.
"Students should get an early start, which means now,
in September," said Terri Lambarco, the associate direc-
tor of CP&P. "They shouldn't try to answer critical ques-
tions (about their career) in May."
Lambarco added that students who are concerned
about finding a job after graduation should take advan-
tage of on-campus interviews, job fairs and position
She also said that networking and professional asso-

"Students should get an early
start, which means now, in
September. They shouldn't try
to answer critical questions
(about their career) in May."
- Terri Lambarco
Associate Director of Career Planning and Placement
ciations are useful in finding a career.
Although many students may consider waiting out the
troubled economy in graduate school, Lambarco cau-
tioned against investing so much time and money in edu-
cation without a serious interest.
"Graduate school is something students should only
consider if they are committed to that study," she said.
The federal government will try to improve the stagnant
economy by enacting new legislation to support Americans
without jobs.
Sen. Ted Kennedy (D-Mass.) recently introduced the Eco-
nomic Security Act of 2002 to the Senate Committee of
Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions.
The bill would provide long-term insurance to workers who
have lost their jobs.
Mike Spaln, a spokesman for Kennedy, said that workers
would stimulate the economy by spending their government
pensions, creating new job opportunities for students.
"As the economy improves, so will the ability of college
students to find jobs," Spahn said.

Continued from Page 1
The documentary includes interviews
with more than 20 people, who say they
are homeless for a variety of reasons
including family situations, mental and
physical health problems, abuse and
personal lifestyle choice. Some people
in the video worked two jobs, while
some bought alcohol with panhandled
Some lived in shelters, some in
friends' and families' homes, and others
live in the woods or under bridges near
Ann Arbor.
"I kind of like living the simple life
anyways," said a man named David fea-
tured in the documentary. "Why do I
need to spend $300 a month for hat
storage?" he said, adding that two-thirds
of the reason he is homeless is personal
"A lot of people don't want to tell an
employer they're homeless," Little Bear
said. "I picked to be homeless because I
like it."
Others have different experiences.
"We'll stay in parking structures, some-
times with friends, sometimes with
family, or sometimes on a porch hud-
dled up under a couple of blankets,"
Rose said. "Sometimes we'll walk
around all night long. And it's not fun.
It's not fun not having a permanent
place to sleep, to eat, to go and take a
shower. ... I don't like this." Rose said
she lost custody of her children because
she was homeless. "In this county, espe-
cially if you're homeless and female,
your kids are gone," she said.
Some in the film expressed frustra-
tion toward the attitudes of students and
Ann Arbor residents. "You see all these
kids going around where their mom-
miesand daddies paid for them to go to
college and you wish you had that,"
Lyzz said.

The Washtenaw County Shelter
Organization houses 70 to 90 people
every night and provided services to
more than 1,000 people in 2001,
according to its website.
"I think that Washtenaw County has
lots of services to offer," said Henry
Smith, a former social worker for
Washtenaw County who heard about
the Aug. 18 showing from his friend. "I
visited the camps - this time of year it
has a nice appeal."
Some attendees at the Aug. 13
screening hoped the documentary
would motivate students to change.
"There's too many people who aren't
getting cared for," said Tony, who both
appeared in the documentary and
attended the screening. "There's a need
- every person should supply that
need, even if it means that they have to
wake up and seea homeless person."
For one homeless man, economic dif-
ficulty forced him to adopt a homeless
lifestyle. "Not only had I been stereo-
typed, I stereotyped myself," Sande
said, whose dream was to come to the
United States.
The filmmakers' friends said the
product was many months in the mak-
ing. "I first heard them talk about it last
October," said University alum Suhani
Bora. "I was impressed by their motiva-
Bora added that she thought it would
be good for freshmen. "It's good for
freshmen to see. ... It's a different side
of Ann Arbor."
Suhani's sister Nirali noted the film
might help build the sense of communi-
ty on campus. "It's something people
see and ignore.... It makes me want to
get to know the people I see more."
One attendee of the screening felt the
documentary struck an inappropriate
tone. "I was absolutely ... insulted by
the film," she said. "Encouraging peo-
ple to whine does not help them." She

said she currently had a place where she
paid rent and viewed the documentary
as demeaning.
Priscilla, a women featured in the
documentary who also attended the
showing, said she thought the intention
was to present the voices of the home-
less, rather than demean the position of
the homeless.
The filmmakers said their goal was
to create an accurate portrayal of the
individuals they interviewed. "A lot of
people were sad, but they're doing
alright," filmmaker Jon Mathias said.
Participants also discussed a pro-
posed city ordinance prohibiting pan-
handling on Main, Liberty, State, and
South University streets, and the new,
multi-million dollar homeless shelter
under construction on the west side of
Ann Arbor.
Ann Arbor Major John Hieftje said
he supported the proposed panhandling
ban and the construction of the new
"The goal is to end homelessness ...
not just give them a night in a bed,"
Hieftje said.
He added that federal and state poli-
cies have contributed to the homeless
population in Ann Arbor.
"We have a lot of agencies at county
and city level eager to help people in
need," Hieftje added.
A man named Tony who appeared in
the documentary and attended the
showing, disagreed with the proposed
"A lot of these businesses have a
problem with us panhandling, but they
won't help us out," Tony said.
When asked, filmmaker Wolfe said
he had mixed feelings about the new
shelter. "It's a difficult issue - I'm
kinda neutral," he said, adding that he
was concerned the shelter would only
benefit a specific group of people. "We
still need to have more."

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