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Good news at last for college graduates: an improved job outlook

Hiring of the next crop of college graduates will increase about 7 percent over the 2010-11 academic year, according to a new survey. But competition for jobs will still be fierce.

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Hiring for college grads is poised to improve during the current academic year – a welcome piece of positive news for young Americans who have been among those most affected by a weak job market.

Hiring of new bachelor's degree holders will increase about 7 percent, compared with the 2010-11 academic year, according to a newly released survey of 4,200 job recruiters by the College Employment Research Institute.

"This year’s market ... shows a more consistent pattern of growth across industry sectors," concludes a summary from the institute, which is based at Michigan State University in East Lansing.

The report says that employer uncertainty "has lessened somewhat."

The new report says computer science majors are among those in strong demand, with not enough graduates to fill all positions. Grads with expertise in accounting, engineering, finance, and supply-chain management also enjoy strong prospects.

Demand from agriculture and food-processing employers is up strongly.

Other fields with improving opportunities include marketing, advertising, public relations, sales, nursing, clinical laboratory scientists, human resources, chemistry, statistics, and math.

"Even with this improved job outlook, the competition will be fierce," the report's summary cautions. Overall, "employer demand falls short of the supply of graduating students."

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