The youth vote was critical in Barack Obama’s reelection.
More college-educated Millinials are jobless and living in poverty than any other 20th Century generation at that age.
It’s not all good news, though. The Pew found that the both the share of college-educated 25 – 32 year-olds unemployed and those living in poverty is greater than any other generation of the 20th century at the same age. And while salaries for college grads have grown by $7K over the last 40 years, median earnings for those 25 – 32 have been stagnant for decades, even as the cost of education has soared. Other data from the University of Waterloo actually shows Millennials underearning their parents at the same age.
As well, there are important limits to the Pew’s research to consider. Their data only includes Millenials who were employed full-time during the previous year, regardless of education level. In essence, they’re only surveying those Millennials for whom education has actually paid off as to their views on education. It’s easy to say that education is a worthwhile investment if your degree has actually benefited you in the form of gainful, career-oriented work. Absent from the discussion and from the Pew’s somewhat heartening news are the attitudes of the millions of recent college grads who are unemployed or underemployed, like the 15% of 2013 grads who fall into one of those camps, or the 36% working jobs that don’t require their degrees.