The Seniors’ Economic Expectation Research (SEER) Index, a study done on 749 graduating college seniors nationwide, shows that their economic expectations have dropped drastically since last year.
The study was compiled by Dr. Charles Wilf, Assistant Professor of Economics at Duquesne’s A.J. Palumbo School of Business Administration, along with two students of the business school.
Wilf expected numbers to drop due to the poor economy; however, he did not expect the difference in expectations between male and female to widen to the extent that it did.
Last year, 65 percent of participants provided a “good or very good” ranking for overall employment prospects in their careers. This year, “good or very good” expectations dropped 20 percent. A breakdown by gender shows that the “good or very good” ranking was given by 53 percent of the senior males, but only 37 percent of the females this year.
Last year, 51 percent of women anticipated earning $30,000 or less; this year, 57 percent believe they will earn $30,000 or less. 37 percent of males this year anticipate making $30,000 or less, increasing by only 2 percent since last year.
Wilf says a reason for the large gap between genders may be their choice of study. Males tend to major in fields such as business, engineering and computer science, whereas females are more likely to enter into education, social sciences, and liberal arts.