The Michigan Daily - Monday, December 1, 2003 - 7A
Computer science majorfails to yieldjobs
Continued from Page 1A
lapsed, the demand for computer-related profes-
sions declined. "So when they released those
workers it just flooded the market, and now it
has been difficult to pick them up (to hire
them)." By adding college graduates into the
already existing large pool of computer-related
unemployed workers, hiring has become even
more competitive, Gardner said.
Because of the already available pool of able
workers, the competitive nature of the tech
industry has made job hunting for computer
science major and LSA senior Brian Msal even
"I am definitely having trouble finding a job
related to computer science," he said.
Out of 15 different jobs he has applied for, he
has only gotten one interview. Not only does he
have to compete with unemployed workers who
already have experience in the tech industry, but
he also has to contend with his peers who are
also studying computer science.
To make matters worse, graduates majoring
in computer science may expect more competi-
tion due to a massive decline in tech jobs in
A study released last month by the American
Electronics Association indicated that last year,
540,000 high-tech jobs were lost in the United
States. That marks an 8-percent decrease from
2001. The software industry and high-tech
manufacturing sectors lost the most jobs,
decreasing their employment by 383,000.
The only sector to increase jobs was the
research and development testing industry,
which hired 7,000 new workers.
Some University alumni have already strug-
gled with the tough job market and have harsh
memories of it.
Wei Bai graduated with a computer science
degree in 2000 and left for Silicon Valley to
pursue a job in the tech industry. She said at
first that computer companies were begging
computer science graduates to join their busi-
nesses. "(But) the job market has been bad in
Silicon Valley in the past three years," she said.
"One of my friends, who also graduated in
2000, was begged by Trilogy to join their com-
pany. But, he was soon laid off after six months
when the downturn hit.
Unlike Msal or other University students,
Wei doesn't have to worry as much about com-
petition with friends in the same field, but more
about overseas competition.
"Many high-tech companies in the Silicon
Valley are moving jobs to India. My company
just moved their quality assurance department
"In talking to computer
science majors and
seniors, it is clear it is
still much more
challenging to find a job
this year than it was two
or three year ago.
- John Laird
Professor, computer science
to India. Many predict that the development
organization will be the next," Wei said.
Computer science and engineering Prof. John
Laird said last year's employment in computer-
related fields was the worst in his memory.
But he has talked to a few of the big comput-
er companies and they have indicated they plan
on hiring more workers than last year. Still, he
added, "In talking to computer science and
computer engineering seniors, it is clear it is
still much more challenging to find a job this
year than it was two to three years ago."
The job outlook for computer science gradu-
ates seems bleak, yet despite these figures and
personal experiences, the long-term outlook for
employment in computer professions is opti-
In a 2001 study, the U.S. Bureau of Labor
Statistics predicted that by the year 2010, com-
puter-related professions will have the highest
growth in employment. Moreover, eight of the
top 10 occupations with the highest growth by
the year 2010 will all be computer-related
The Bureau of Labor predicted that careers in
computer software engineering and applications
will double from 380,000 to 760,100.
The other top computer-related professions
will increase in employment by at least 60 per-
Gardner said the statistics provided by the
Bureau of Labor Statistics are correct. "In the
short term there are going to be losers, and the
computer professions are going to have a hard
time. It's going to take a couple of years to sort
them out, but in the long term it will work out
for them," he said.
Gardner hopes the current job trends do not
discourage anyone from pursuing their career,
"They are going to have to be patient, and
look in the usual places for jobs, and they are
going to have to be willing to take temporary
assignments. Hopefully, they won't have to
stray too far. This is just something that hap-
pens," he said.
Others are also seeing a more optimistic out-
look for this year. Though her first years search-
ing for a job have produced little results, Wei
also said things have started to get better in Sili-
con Valley. "I will say the job market is improv-
ing. I even received a recruiter's phone call
recently. I haven't had one in the past three
years," she said.
Even with the tough market, some University
graduates have made careers in the tech indus-
try. Neil McNeight, who graduated last spring,
was hired by Boeing to work as software engi-
neer for the International Space Station.
McNeight said he only received one job
offer. His advice to this year's seniors majoring
in computer science is simple - don't give up.
A monkey eats watermelon during a festival in Lopburi Province, north of
Bangkok, Thailand yesterday. The festival was started in 1989 by a local
businessman who believed that monkeys were a source of good luck.
Continued from Page 1A
chase a subscription. Just about every major
university is involved with the program," she
According to the Journal-in-Education
website, "Faculty members who refer 10 new
student subscribers in the current semester or
quarter will receive a complimentary one-
year subscription to The Journal, in both print
and online formats.
"Students indicate at the site which instruc-
tor referred them so we can credit individual
Economics Prof. Alan Deardorff, who has
used the Journal-in-Education program for 25
years, said many of his students likely did not
take advantage of their Wall Street Journal
"I would guess that the median student does not
read it at all," he said.
Business School Prof. Jefferson Williams said he
does not consistently incorporate the Journal into
his lesson plans.
"This fall I have used the Wall Street Journal
only infrequently," he said. "I have not
assigned any readings. I have made mention of
articles from time to time and have also com-
piled stock price and other market data to illus-
trate topics. Very seldom have I assigned more
than four articles during a term."
In a pile in front of the Viscount apartment
complex on Geddes Avenue were papers with
addresses for Norway Road, Austin Avenue,
Wilmot Avenue and Woodside Street. None of
the papers had the address of the Geddes resi-
"All these papers in front of the house are
from people who lived here two years ago.
We called to cancel them, but they wouldn't."
Jim Dinner said. Other students interviewed
were also receiving the previous residents'
the michigan c
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