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Better Job Outlook for CS Grads

But seniors advised to start job search early

BY GARY TUFEL

Job prospects are on a lot of minds these days, especially those of college seniors about to enter the workforce. What’s the outlook for new computer science and engineering grads in this fragile economy? Will they continue to be highly sought after by private industry, academia, and government?

Despite the rEducation & Trainingeduced job market outlook for college grads overall, CS grads will have somewhat better opportunities than most, due to the law of supply and demand. “We don’t have enough CS grads and employers can’t get enough of them. The supply is small this year and will remain small for a few more years,” said Phil Gardner, director of Michigan State University’s Collegiate Employment Research Institute and author of MSU’s 2008-2009 Recruiting Trends study.
According to the Recruiting Trends study, small, fast-growing companies will provide the best employment opportunities for college graduates. But since the hiring forecast is for slower growth, students better be ready now, Gardner advised. He said those who have focused career goals, started their job search early, and stacked up internships will have a decided advantage.

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How Useful Is an MBA?

Earning a business degree can open new doors

BY RACHELLE CRUM

A master's degree in business administration may be the most valuable asset for a computing professional eager to climb the corporate ladder, get back into the workforce faster or keep a startup chugging along.

Yes, the stately glow of the letters M-B-A on your resume will help your chances in the marketplace. In its 2009 Year-End Follow-Up Poll of Employers, the Graduate Management Admission Council noted that it expects a slight increase -- from 65 percent in 2009 to 69 percent in 2010 -- in the proportion of companies hiring new MBA graduates.

Then there are the countless success stories about how hobnobbing with accomplished fellow alumni is a resourceful method to get a foot in the door. In GMAC's 2009 Alumni Perspectives Survey, 21 percent of respondents said they secured a job through school alumni networks.

However, what's on the surface can only take you so far in your career -- until you have to actually open your mouth and solve some business problems on the job. It's then that the refined skills and knowledge acquired in business school can guide you toward better decisions and help you become a stronger leader.

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