Freshmen flood NC college campuses despite bleak jobs forecast

Posted August 13, 2011 11:07 p.m. EDT
Updated August 14, 2011 7:45 a.m. EDT

— Incoming college freshmen flooded the Triangle's college campuses for "move-in weekend" on Saturday, but say they're worried that after a dreary week on Wall Street, they could become "Generation Jobless."

Despite a bleak outlook on jobs, many parents still say that a four-year degree, which can cost well over $100,000 at the state's public universities, is a worthy investment.

"There aren't any jobs; that's why we told him (to study) engineering and ROTC Air Force to make the best choices he can make," said Kathy Suleski, whose son Henry is an incoming freshman at North Carolina State University.

He's taking his mother's advice seriously.

"I was leaning toward engineering because I know their engineering program here is really good, but I'm going to see where the first year takes me and go from there," Henry Suleski said.

Unemployment rates for recent college graduates are at an all-time high, a statistic that has the Rosenbaums worried.

"Yes, I'd like a roof over my head and some food," said N.C. State freshman Lindsey Rosenbaum, who plans to major in history.

"When we were looking at what classes she was going to take, the focus right away was, 'Where is this going to get me long-term?'" her father, Dan Rosenbaum, said.

For upperclassmen who are nearing graduation, though, the economic forecast is all the more urgent.

"I'm (still) hopeful I'll get a job," said Lifford Pinto, a third-year graduate student in computer science.

But if the current jobs trend continues, Henry Suleski hopes he won't be back at his parent's house come graduation.

"I'm hoping to get a job because that's the last thing I want to do – move back in with my parents," he said.