Grads’ job outlook bright

Recent or soon-to-be Chico State University graduates attending the Career Fair today (Sept. 28) at Bell Memorial Union are in luck: The job market for them is better than at any time in the past five years.

Employers are increasing entry level hiring, and grads are in the highest demand since 2001, according to, which tracks employment data regarding recent grads.

“9/11 took the wind out of hiring,” said Jamie Starmer, director of Chico State’s career center. “We saw the number of businesses at our career fair drop from 160 in 2001 to just about 50 in 2002.”

Job markets follow economic cycles, and the cycle is coming back around, he explained.

“It’s pretty easy, when the economy is good, there are more jobs, but when you have an economy like we had after 2001, people stop hiring,” Starmer said.

“Not only are we seeing an increase in job openings, but employers have to offer lucrative packages to draw top entry-level talent,” said Brian Krueger, president of

More than 100 businesses will cram their booths into the BMU Auditorium to recruit those attending this year’s career fair, Starmer said.

“At Chico State we’re seeing everyone from construction management and engineering to special education and nursing majors find jobs in business,” he said. “If students were to do nothing more than come to our on-campus recruiting program, they could get 10 to 15 interviews and succeed.”