Updated: Wednesday, 19 Nov 2008, 12:22 PM CST
Published : Wednesday, 19 Nov 2008, 2:04 AM CST
Zoua Vue is a few weeks away from completing the dental assistant program at Northeast Wisconsin Technical College in Green Bay.
"Right now I work very part time because of school affairs, but then they're looking to put me full time," Vue said.
Though Vue's employment at a dentist's office seems secure, many of her classmates are working on resumes and looking for jobs.
"I do feel pretty fortunate that I have a job lined up already," she said.
NWTC is seeing a need for people trained in manufacturing, agribusiness and health care, among other fields.
"Certainly the phone calls are still coming, people are still posting positions," said Sandy Duckett, NWTC vice president of college advancement. "I think it's probably more difficult than it has been in the past, but we also provide career counseling as well as how to build a successful resume."
It may be more difficult to find a job because it appears employers will be hiring fewer college grads. According to a recent National Association of Colleges and Employers study, half the companies surveyed planned to hire fewer new college graduates in the future.
Kathy Heinzen, director of the career center at Lawrence University in Appleton, says the economic downturn is so recent, it's hard to know exactly how it will affect students finishing school next month.
"I think that we seem to be in a wait-and-see mode," Heinzen said. "Not all industries are experiencing the same effects, so there's a good bit of variety in terms of how people are experiencing the downturn in the economy."
"It feels pretty good to graduate," said Josh Huilar, who will graduate from St. Norbert College in De Pere next month. "That's always a good thing. As for the economic climate, it's kind of scary in a sense because of course there's a lot of news in the media about how major companies are cutting down on a lot of jobs and whatnot, so I guess that's a little bit of some reason to be concerned, especially graduating in this kind of economic climate."
The Lawrence University career center says it is noticing a slow and steady increase in the number of graduates who are enrolling in a service program such as the Peace Corps, after graduation.